The Rosary ( Latin : rosarium , in the sense of "crown of roses" or "garland of roses", usually in the form of the Dominican Rosary , is a form of prayer used especially in the Catholic Church named for the string of prayer beads used to count the component prayers. When used of the form of prayer, the word is usually capitalized ("the Rosary"), as is customary for other names of prayers, such as "the Lord's Prayer ", "the Hail Mary ", "the Magnificat ". When referring to the beads, it is normally written with a lower-case initial ("a rosary").
The prayers that essentially compose the Rosary are arranged in sets of ten Hail Marys with each set preceded by one Lord's Prayer and followed by one Glory Be . During recitation of each set, known as a decade, thought is given to one of the Mysteries of the Rosary , which recall events in the lives of Jesus and Mary . Normally, five decades are recited in a session. Other prayers are sometimes added after each decade (in particular, the Fátima Prayer ) and before (in particular, the Apostles' Creed ), and after (in particular, the Hail, Holy Queen ) the five decades taken as a whole. The rosary as a material object is an aid towards saying these prayers in the proper sequence.
A standard fifteen Mysteries of the Rosary, based on the long-standing custom, was established by Pope Pius V in the 16th century, grouping the mysteries in three sets: the Joyful Mysteries, the Sorrowful Mysteries, and the Glorious Mysteries. In 2002 Pope John Paul II suggested a new optional set of five, called the Luminous Mysteries, bringing the total number of mysteries to twenty.
For over four centuries, the rosary has been promoted by several popes as part of the veneration of Mary in Roman Catholicism . The rosary also represents the Roman Catholic emphasis on "participation in the life of Mary, whose focus was Christ", and the Mariological theme "to Christ through Mary", taught by Saint Louis de Montfort .
FIFTEEN PROMISES OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN TO CHRISTIANS WHO FAITHFULLY PRAY THE ROSARY
Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.
I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary.
The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.
It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of people from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means.
The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying themselves to the consideration of its Sacred Mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise them in His justice, they shall not perish by an unprovided death; if they be just, they shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.
Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the Sacraments of the Church.
Those who are faithful to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light of God and the plentitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the Saints in Paradise.
I shall deliver from purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.
All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities.
I have obtained from my Divine Son that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors the entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death.
All who recite the Rosary are my children, and brothers and sisters of my only Son, Jesus Christ.
Devotion to my Rosary is a great sign of predestination.
St. Louis de Montfort
"If you say the Rosary faithfully until death, I assure you that in spite of the gravity of your sins, you shall receive a never-fading crown of glory. Even if you are on the brink of damnation, even if you have one foot in Hell, even if you have sold your soul to the devil as sorcerers do who practice black magic, and even if you are a heretic as obstinate as a devil, sooner or later you will be converted and will amend your life and save your soul, if and mark well what I say -- if you say the Holy Rosary devoutly every day until death for the purpose of knowing the truth and obtaining contrition and pardon of your sins."
Words of Our Lady of Fatima on the Holy Rosary
Pray the Rosary every day, in order to obtain peace for the world, and the end of the war. ...May 13, 1917
I wish you to come here on the 13th of next month, to pray the Rosary each day. ...June 13, 1917
I want you to come here on the 13th of next month, and to continue praying the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, in order to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war, because only She can help you. ...July 13, 1917
I want you to continue praying the Rosary every day. ...August 19, 1917
Continue to say the Rosary to obtain the end of the war. ...September 13, 1917
I am Our Lady of the Rosary. Continue to say the Rosary every day. ...October 13, 1917
You at least try to console Me and announce in My name that I promise to assist at the moment of death, with all the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the First Saturday of five consecutive months shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite ftve decades of the Rosary, and keep Me Company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making Reparation to Me.
... December 10, 1925 to Sister Lucy at Pontevedra
Pope Pius XII
"There is no surer means of calling down God's blessing upon the family than the daily recitation of the Rosary."
Bishop Hugh Boyle
"Those who say the Rosary frequently and fervently will gradually grow in grace and holiness and will enjoy the special protection of Our Lady and the abiding friendship of God."