The Rosary's Prayers
Making The Sign of the Cross
In the name of
the Father [touch forehead], and of the Son [touch breast], and of the
Holy Ghost [touch left shoulder, then right shoulder]. Amen.
Latin Version: Signum Crucis
In nomine Patris [touch forehead] et Filii [touch breast] et Spiritus
Sancti [touch left shoulder, then right shoulder]. Amen.
I believe in
God, the Father almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth, and in in Jesus
Christ, His only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was
crucified, died and was buried. He descended into Hell. On the third
day He rose again. He ascended into Heaven, and is seated at the right
hand of God the Father Almighty. He will come again to judge the living
and the dead. + I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic
Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the
resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
Latin Version: Symbolum Apostolorum
Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem, Creatorem caeli et terrae. Et in
Iesum Christum, Filium eius unicum, Dominum nostrum, qui conceptus est
de Spiritu Sancto, natus ex Maria Virgine, passus sub Pontio Pilato,
crucifixus, mortuus, et sepultus, descendit ad inferos, tertia die
resurrexit a mortuis, ascendit ad caelos, sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris
omnipotentis, inde venturus est iudicare vivos et mortuos. +
Credo in Spiritum Sanctum, sanctam Ecclesiam Catholicam, sanctorum
communionem, remissionem peccatorum, carnis resurrectionem, vitam
Our Father, Who
art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be
done, On earth as it is in Heaven. + Give us this day, our daily bread,
And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against
us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
Latin Version: Pater Noster (Oratio
Pater noster, qui es in caelis, sanctificetur Nomen tuum. Adveniat
regnum tuum. Fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo et in terra. + Panem
nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie, et dimitte nobis debita nostra
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Et ne nos inducas in
tentationem, sed libera nos a malo. Amen.
Hail Mary, Full
of Grace, The Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and
blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. + Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of death. Amen.
Latin Version: Ave Maria (Salutatio
Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et
benedictus fructus ventris tui, Iesus. + Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora
pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc, et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
Glory be to the
Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. + As it was in the
beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Latin Version: Doxologia Minor
Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.+ Sicut erat in principio,
et nunc, et semper, et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
O My Jesus, +
forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell and lead all souls
to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy. Amen.
Latin Version: Oratio Fatimae
Oh mi Jesu, dimitte nobis debita nostra, libera nos ab igne inferni,
conduc in caelum omnes animas, praesertim illas quae maxime indigent
misericordia tua. Amen.
See these other
pages for other optional concluding prayers
Scripture and Readings to use in
Announcing and Pondering the Mysteries
Behold thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and shalt
bring forth a son; and thou shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be
great, and shall be called the Son of the most High; and the Lord God
shall give unto him the throne of David his father; and he shall reign
in the house of Jacob for ever.
Picture the scene of the Annunciation. God proposes the mystery of the
Incarnation which He will accomplish in the Virgin Mary--but not until
she has given her consent. The accomplishment of the mystery is held in
suspense awaiting the free acceptance of Mary. At this moment Mary
represents all of us in her own person; it is as if God is waiting for
the response of the humanity to which He longs to unite Himself. What a
solemn moment this is! For upon this moment depends the decision of the
most vital mystery of Christianity.
But see how Mary gives her answer. Full of faith and confidence in the
heavenly message and entirely submissive to the Divine Will, the Virgin
Mary replies in a spirit of complete and absolute abandonment: "Behold
the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to Thy word." This
"Fiat" is Mary's consent to the Divine Plan of Redemption. It is like
an echo of the "Fiat" of the creation of the world. But this is a new
world, a world infinitely superior, a world of grace, which God will
cause to arise in consequence of Mary's consent, for at that moment the
Divine Word, the second Person of the Blessed Trinity, becomes Man in
Mary: "And the Word was made Flesh and dwelt among us."
Visitation : Luke 1:42-45
And she cried out with a loud voice, and said:
Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And
whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For
behold as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in my ears, the
infant in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed art thou that hast
believed, because those things shall be accomplished that were spoken
to thee by the Lord.
See how the Holy Spirit greets the Virgin Mary through the mouth of
Elizabeth: "Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of
thy womb! And blessed art thou that hast believed, because those things
shall be accomplished that were spoken to thee by the Lord."
Blessed indeed, for by this faith in the word of God the Virgin Mary
became the Mother of Christ.
What finite creature has ever received honor such as this from the
Mary gives all the glory to the Lord for the marvelous things which are
accomplished in her. From the moment of the Incarnation the Virgin
Mother sings in her heart a canticle full of love and gratitude.
In the presence of her cousin Elizabeth she allows the most profound
sentiments of her heart to break forth in song; she intones the
"Magnificat" which, in the course of centuries, her children will
repeat with her to praise God for having chosen her among all women:
"My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
Because He has regarded the lowliness of His handmaid... Because He Who
is mighty has done great things for me And holy is His name."
Nativity: Luke 2:6-7
And it came to pass, that when they were there,
her days were accomplished, that she should be delivered. And she
brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him up in swaddling
clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them
in the inn.
The Virgin Mary sees in the Infant that she has given to the world, a
child in appearance like all other children, the very Son of God.
Mary's soul was filled with an immense faith which welled up in her and
surpassed the faith of all the just men of the Old Testament; this is
why she recognized her God in her own Son.
This faith manifests itself externally by an act of adoration. From her
very first glance at Jesus, the Virgin prostrated herself interiorly in
a spirit of adoration so profound that we can never fathom its depth.
In the heart of Mary are joined in perfect harmony a creature's
adoration of her God and a Mother's love for her only Son.
How inconceivably great the joy in the soul of Jesus must have been as
He experienced this boundless love of His Mother! Between these two
souls took place ceaseless exchanges of love which brought them into
ever closer unity. O wonderful exchange: to Mary Jesus gives the
greatest gifts and graces, and to Jesus Mary gives her fullest
cooperation: after the union of the Divine Persons in the Blessed
Trinity and the hypostatic union of the divine and human natures in the
Incarnation, no more glorious or more profound union can be conceived
than the union between Jesus and Mary.
Presentation: Luke 2:22-24
And after the days of her purification, according
to the law of Moses, were accomplished, they carried him to Jerusalem,
to present him to the Lord: As it is written in the law of the Lord:
Every male opening the womb shall be called holy to the Lord: And to
offer a sacrifice, according as it is written in the law of the Lord, a
pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons...
On the day of the Presentation God received infinitely more glory than
He had hitherto received in the temple from all the sacrifices and all
the holocausts of the Old Testament. On this day it is His own Son
Jesus Who is offered to Him, and Who offers to the Father the infinite
homage of adoration, thanksgiving, expiation and supplication.
This is indeed a gift worthy of God.
And it is from the hands of the Virgin, full of grace, that this
offering, so pleasing to God, is received. Mary's faith is perfect.
Filled with the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, she has a clear
understanding of the value of the offering which she is making to God
at this moment; by His inspirations the Holy Spirit brings her soul
into harmony with the interior dispositions of the heart of her Divine
Just as Mary had given her consent in the name of all humanity when the
angel announced to her the mystery of the Incarnation, so also on this
day Mary offers Jesus to the Father in the name of the whole human
race. For she knows that her Son is "the King of Glory, the new light
enkindled before the dawn, the Master of life and death."
Finding in the Temple: Luke 2:46-47
And it came to pass, that, after three days, they
found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing
them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished
at his wisdom and his answers.
"How is it that you sought Me? Did you not know that I must be about My
Father's business?" This is the answer that Jesus gave to His Mother
when, after three days' search she had the joy of finding Him in the
These are the first words coming from the lips of the Word Incarnate to
be recorded in the Gospel.
In these words Jesus sums up His whole person, His whole life, His
whole mission. They reveal His Divine Sonship; they testify to His
supernatural mission. Christ's whole life will only be a clarifying and
magnificent exposition of the meaning of these words.
St. Luke goes on to tell us that Mary "did not understand the word that
He spoke." But even if Mary did not grasp the full significance of
these words, she did not doubt that Jesus was the Son of God. This is
why she submitted in silence to that Divine Will which had demanded
such a sacrifice of her love.
"Mary kept these words of Jesus carefully in her heart." She kept them
in her heart, for there was the tabernacle in which she adored the
mystery concealed in the words of her Son, waiting until the full light
of understanding would be granted her.
Agony in the
Garden: Matthew 26:36-39
Then Jesus came with them into a country place
which is called Gethsemani; and he said to his disciples: Sit you here,
till I go yonder and pray. And taking with him Peter and the two sons
of Zebedee, he began to grow sorrowful and to be sad. Then he saith to
them: My soul is sorrowful even unto death: stay you here, and watch
with me. And going a little further, he fell upon his face, praying,
and saying: My Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from
me. Nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
It is for the love of His Father above all else that Jesus willed to
undergo His Passion.
Behold Jesus Christ in His agony. For three long hours weariness,
grief, fear and anguish sweep in upon His soul like a torrent; the
pressure of this interior agony is so immense that blood bursts forth
from His sacred veins. What an abyss of suffering is reached in this
agony! And what does Jesus say to His Father? "Father, if it be
possible, let this chalice pass from Me." Can it be that Jesus no
longer accepts the Will of His Father? Oh! certainly He does. But this
prayer is the cry of the sensitive emotions of poor human nature,
crushed by ignominy and suffering. Now is Jesus truly a "Man of
Sorrows." Our Savior feels the terrible weight of His agony bearing
down upon His shoulders. He wants us to realize this; that is why He
utters such a prayer.
But listen to what He immediately adds: "Nevertheless, Father, not My
will but Thine be done." Here is the triumph of love. Because He loves
His Father, He places the Will of His Father above everything else and
accepts every possible suffering in order to redeem us.
Scourging at the Pillar: Matthew 27:25-26
And the whole people answering, said: His blood be
upon us and our children. Then he released to them Barabbas, and having
scourged Jesus, delivered him unto them to be crucified.
Christ substituted Himself voluntarily for us as a sacrificial victim
without blemish in order to pay our debt, and, by the expiation and the
satisfaction which He made for us, to restore the Divine life to us.
This was the mission which Christ came to fulfill, the course which He
had to run. "God has placed upon Him"--a man like unto ourselves, of
the race of Adam, but entirely just and innocent and without sin--"the
iniquity of us all."
Since Christ has become, so to speak, a sharer in our nature and taken
upon Himself the debt of our sin, He has merited for us a share in His
justice and holiness. In the forceful words of St. Paul, God, "by
sending His Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin-offering, has
condemned sin in the flesh." And with an impact still more stunning,
the Apostle writes: "For our sakes He (God) made Him (Christ) to be sin
who knew nothing of sin." How startling this expression is: "made Him
to be sin"! The Apostle does not say "sinner," but--what is still more
Let us never forget that "we have been redeemed at great price by the
precious blood of Christ as of a lamb without blemish and without
Crowning with Thorns: Matthew 27:28-29
And stripping him, they put a scarlet cloak about
him. And platting a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a
reed in his right hand. And bowing the knee before him, they mocked
him, saying: Hail, king of the Jews.
Christ Jesus becomes an object of derision and insults at the hands of
the temple servants. Behold Him, the all-powerful God, struck by sharp
blows; His adorable face, the joy of the saints, is covered with
spittle; a crown of thorns is forced down upon His head; a purple robe
is placed upon His shoulders as a mock of derision; a reed is thrust
into His hand; the servants genuflect insolently before Him in mockery.
What an abyss of ignominy! What humiliation and disgrace for One before
Whom the angels tremble!
The cowardly Roman governor imagines that the hatred of the Jews will
be satisfied by the sight of Christ in this pitiful state. He shows Him
to the crowd: "Ecce Homo--Behold the Man!"
Let us contemplate our Divine Master at this moment, plunged into the
abyss of suffering and ignominy, and let us realize that the Father
also presents Him to us and says to us: "Behold My Son, the splendor of
My glory--but bruised for the sins of My people."
Carrying the Cross: John 19:12-18
And from henceforth Pilate sought to release him.
But the Jews cried out, saying: If thou release this man, thou art not
Caesar's friend. For whosoever maketh himself a king, speaketh against
Caesar. Now when Pilate had heard these words, he brought Jesus forth,
and sat down in the judgment seat, in the place that is called
Lithostrotos, and in Hebrew Gabbatha. And it was the parasceve of the
pasch, about the sixth hour, and he saith to the Jews: Behold your
king. But they cried out: Away with him; away with him; crucify him.
Pilate saith to them: Shall I crucify your king? The chief priests
answered: We have no king but Caesar. Then therefore he delivered him
to them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him forth. And
bearing his own cross, he went forth to that place which is called
Calvary, but in Hebrew Golgotha. Where they crucified him, and with him
two others, one on each side, and Jesus in the midst.
Let us meditate upon Jesus Christ on the way to Calvary laden with His
cross. He falls under the weight of this burden. To expiate sin, He
wills to experience in His own flesh the oppression of sin. Fearing
that Jesus will not reach the place of crucifixion alive, the Jews
force Simon of Cyrene to help Christ to carry His cross, and Jesus
accepts this assistance.
In this Simon represents all of us. As members of the Mystical Body of
Christ, we should all help Jesus to carry His Cross. This is the one
sure sign that we belong to Christ--if we carry our cross with Him.
But while Jesus carried His cross, He merited for us the strength to
bear our trials with generosity. He has placed in His cross a sweetness
which makes ours bearable, for when we carry our cross it is really His
that we receive. For Christ unites with His own the sufferings,
sorrows, pains and burdens which we accept with love from His hand, and
by this union He gives them an inestimable value, and they become a
source of great merit for us.
It is above all His love for His Father which impels Christ to accept
the sufferings of His Passion, but it is also the love which He bears
Crucifixion & Death: Luke 23:45-46
And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the
temple was rent in the midst. And Jesus crying out with a loud voice,
said: Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit. And saying this, he
gave up the ghost.
At the Last Supper, when the hour had come to complete His oblation of
self, what did Christ say to His Apostles who were gathered around Him?
"Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for
his friends." And this is the love, surpassing all loves, which Jesus
shows us; for, as St. Paul says, "It is for us all that He is delivered
up." What greater proof of love could He have given us? None.
Hence the Apostle declares without ceasing that "because He loved us,
Christ delivered Himself up for us," and "because of the love He bears
for me, He gave Himself up for me."
"Delivered," "given"--to what extent? Even to the death on the cross!
What enhances this love immeasurably is the sovereign liberty with
which Christ delivered Himself up: "He offered Himself because He
willed it." These words tell us how spontaneously Jesus accepted His
Passion. This freedom with which Jesus delivered Himself up to death
for us is one of the aspects of His sacrifice which touch our human
hearts most profoundly.
of Our Lord: Matthew 28:5-6
And the angel answering, said to the women: Fear
not you; for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not
here, for he is risen, as he said. Come, and see the place where the
Lord was laid.
On the day of His Resurrection Jesus Christ left in the tomb the shroud
which is the symbol of our infirmities, our weaknesses, our
imperfections. Christ comes from the tomb triumphant--completely free
of earthly limitation; He is animated with a life that is intense and
perfect, and which vibrates in every fibre of His being. In Him
everything that is mortal has been absorbed by His glorified life.
Here is the first element of the sanctity represented in the risen
Christ: the elimination of everything that is corruptible, everything
that is earthly and created; freedom from all defects, all infirmities,
all capacity for suffering.
But there is also another element of sanctity: union with God, self-
oblation and consecration to God. Only in heaven shall we be able to
understand how completely Jesus lived for His Father during these
blessed days. The life of the risen Christ became an infinite source of
glory for His Father. Not a single effect of His sufferings was left in
Him, for now everything in Him shone with brilliance and beauty and
possessed strength and life; every atom of His being sang an unceasing
canticle of praise. His holy humanity offered itself in a new manner to
the glory of the Father.
Ascension into Heaven: Luke 24:50-51
And he led them out as far as Bethania: and
lifting up his hands, he blessed them. And it came to pass, whilst he
blessed them, he departed from them, and was carried up to heaven.
Our Lord said to His Apostles before He departed from them: "If you
loved Me, you would indeed rejoice that I am going to the Father." To
us also Christ repeats these words. If we love Him, we shall rejoice in
His glorification; we shall rejoice with Him that, after completing His
course on earth, He ascends to the right hand of His Father, there to
be exalted above all the heavens in infinite glory.
But Jesus goes only to precede us; He does not separate Himself from
us, nor does He separate us from Himself. If He enters into His
glorious kingdom, it is to prepare a place for us there. He promises to
return one day to take us with Him so that, as He says, where He is we
also may be. True, we are already there in the glory and happiness of
Christ, by our title as His heirs; but we shall one day be there in
reality. Has not Christ asked this of His Father? "Father, I will that
where I am, they also whom Thou hast given Me may be with Me."
Let us then say to Christ Jesus: "Draw us into Your triumphal march, O
glorious and all-powerful Conqueror! Make us live in heaven by faith
and hope and love. Help us to detach ourselves from the fleeting things
of earth in order that we may seek the true and lasting goods of
The Pentecost: Acts 2:3-4
And there appeared to them parted tongues as it
were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them: And they were all
filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers
tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak.
The Holy Spirit appeared under the form of tongues of fire in order to
fill the Apostles with truth and to prepare them to bear witness to
Jesus. He also come to fill their hearts with love.
He is the Person of Love in the life of God. He is also like a breath,
an aspiration of infinite Love, from which we draw the breath of life.
On the day of Pentecost the Divine Spirit communicated such an
abundance of life to the whole Church that to symbolize it "there came
a sound from heaven, as of a violent wind coming, and it filled the
whole house where they (the Apostles) were sitting."
But it is also for us that the Holy Spirit has come, for the group in
the Cenacle represented the whole Church. The Holy Spirit came to
remain with the Church forever. This is the promise of Jesus Himself.
He dwells in the Church permanently and unfailingly, performing in it
without ceasing, His action of life-giving and sanctification. He
establishes the Church infallibly in the truth. It is He Who makes the
Church blossom forth with a marvelous supernatural fruitfulness, for He
brings to life and full fruition in Virgins, Martyrs, Confessors, those
heroic virtues which are one of the marks of true sanctity.
Assumption of Mary: Hebrews 11:5
By faith Henoch was translated, that he should not
see death; and he was not found, because God had translated him: for
before his translation he had testimony that he pleased God.
If Christ Jesus wishes us to love all the members of His Mystical Body,
should we not love above all others her who gave Him the very nature by
which He became our Head, the same nature which He uses to communicate
His grace to us? We cannot doubt but that the love which we show to his
Mother is extremely pleasing to Christ.
We shall manifest our love by extolling the sublime privileges which
Jesus has bestowed on His Mother, among which the Assumption is one of
the most glorious. If we wish to please our Lord very much, we shall
admire the wonderful gifts with which He has lovingly adorned the soul
of His Mother. He wishes that we should sing the praises of the Virgin,
who was chosen among all women to give the Savior to the world.
"Yes, we shall sing your praises, for you alone have delighted the
heart of your God. May you be blessed, for you have believed the word
of God, and in you the eternal promises have been fulfilled."
Coronation of Mary: Apocalypse 11:19-12:1
And the temple of God was opened in heaven: and
the ark of his testament was seen in his temple, and there were
lightnings, and voices, and an earthquake, and great hail. And a great
sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon
under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars...
What is the purpose of all the mysteries of Christ? To be the pattern
of our supernatural life, the means of our sanctification, the source
of all our holiness. To create an eternal and glorious society of
brethren who will be like unto Him. For this reason Christ, the new
Adam, has associated with Himself Mary, as the new Eve. But she is,
much more than Eve, "the Mother of all the living," the Mother of those
who live in the grace of her Son.
And since here below Mary was associated so intimately with all the
mysteries of our salvation, at her Assumption into heaven Jesus crowned
her not only with glory but also with power; He has placed His Mother
on His right hand and has given her the power, in virtue of her unique
title of Mother of God, to distribute the treasures of eternal life.
Let us then, full of confidence, pray with the Church: "Show yourself a
Mother: Mother of Jesus, by your complete faith in Him, our Mother, by
your mercy towards us; ask Christ, Who was born of you, to give us
life; and Who willed to be your Son, to receive our prayers through
1 In October 2002, His
Holiness, Pope John Paul II, in his Apostolic Letter, Rosarium
Virginis Mariae, recommended "adding" 5 more Mysteries to the
Rosary to be prayed on Thursdays -- the "Luminous Mysteries" which
focus on Jesus' public life. These Mysteries are:
The Baptism in the Jordan
The Marriage Feast at Cana
The Proclamation of the Kingdom
The Institution of the Eucharist
This novelty does not change the Rosary itself and is merely presented
as an option for Christians. This option, however, is one that totally
disrupts the relationship between the Rosary and the Breviary's Psalms.
Traditional Catholics stick with the classic tried-and-true Rosary, at
least for public Rosaries. To read why, see this page.