A family rosary guide: Praying the joyful mysteries
(OSV News) — The rosary is one of the most popular prayers of all time. In the rosary, we meditate together with Mary on the mysteries of the life of Jesus and the beginnings of the Church. The joyful mysteries include five joyful events in the life of Jesus and Mary: the Annunciation, the Visitation, the Birth of Jesus, the Presentation in the Temple, and the Finding of Jesus in the Temple. Praying the joyful mysteries as a family, especially during the Marian month of May, can help us discover the real joy of living the Gospel in our everyday lives.
— Family meditations for the joyful mysteries
First mystery — The Annunciation (Lk 1:26-38)
God had a special job for Mary to do, and she said, “yes.” Rosary reflection: What is God asking our family to do right now, and how can we say “yes” to him?
Second mystery — The Visitation (Lk 1:39-45)
Mary went to visit her cousin, Elizabeth, and was encouraged by her. Rosary reflection: Who are we encouraged by in our extended family? How can we reconnect with them, or connect with them more often?
Third mystery — The Birth of Jesus (Lk 2:1-14)
Mary and Joseph welcomed Jesus into their home and family. Rosary reflection: How do we welcome Jesus into our home and our family life?
Fourth mystery — The Presentation in the Temple (Lk 2:22-38)
Mary and Joseph presented to God that which they loved the most — their new baby child. Rosary reflection: How do we trust God to bless all that is precious to us? Do we hold anything back from him, or do we offer everything to him, knowing that he is the source of all good things?
Fifth mystery — The Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple (Lk 2:41-52)
Mary and Joseph didn’t expect Jesus to be back at the temple in Jerusalem, but Jesus said he had to do his Father’s work. Rosary reflection: What different or unexpected things does our family sometimes do because we are followers of Christ?
— How to pray the rosary
1. Begin with the sign of the cross
2. Pray the Apostles’ Creed while holding the crucifix.
3. Pray an Our Father on the first bead above the crucifix.
4. Pray three Hail Marys on the next three beads.
5. On the next bead, pray the Glory Be, announce the first mystery, and then
pray an Our Father.
6. Pray 10 Hail Marys for the next 10 beads (called a decade).
7. Pray the Glory Be (optional: then pray the Fatima Decade Prayer).
8. For each following decade, announce the mystery, next say the Our Father, then pray 10 Hail Marys.
9. After the five decades are completed, pray the Hail, Holy Queen and the Closing Prayer.
Sign of the Cross
In the Name of the Father,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, (At the words that follow, up to and including “the Virgin Mary,” all bow) who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; he descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there he will come 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.
The Our Father (The Lord’s Prayer)
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.
The Hail Mary
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 our death.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Fatima Decade Prayer
O my Jesus, forgive us our sins; save us from the fires of hell; lead all souls into heaven, especially those most in need of thy mercy.
Hail, Holy Queen
Hail, holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope.
To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve; to thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary!
V. Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
O God, whose only begotten Son, by his life, death and Resurrection, has purchased for us the reward of eternal salvation, grant, we beseech thee, that while meditating upon these mysteries of the most holy rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate what they contain and obtain what they promise through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
Dr. Joseph White is a clinical psychologist and associate publisher for catechetical resources at OSV. A frequent guest on Catholic radio, White is the author of 12 books and numerous articles on catechesis, ministry, and other topics, including Listening for God in Everyday Life.