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When you look at the Rosary of the Catholic Church you will see that there are 50 small beads amongst a total of 5 larger beads. These are each used in order to pray God and to ask for blessings.
Within these beads, the 5 large beads signify the time to say the Lord’s Prayer, but also the time to say a mystery meditation. Within the five large beads of the rosary, there are the Joyful Mysteries, the Sorrowful Mysteries, the Glorious Mysteries, and the Luminous Mysteries.
In each of these different groupings, there are also a total of 5 different Mysteries as well.
For those who have prayed the Rosary but never truly understood the Mysteries, or for those who have never prayed the Rosary in the past, it is a good reason to take a closer look at what we have here.
Understanding the Joyful Mysteries will allow you to pray even more effectively on the Rosary.
What Are the Joyful Mysteries ?
Let’s take a look at just what the Joyful Mysteries are, shall we ? We’ve already said that there are 5 Mysteries in each of the categories and there are 5 different groupings of Mysteries.
But when we focus on just the Joyful Mysteries we can see the events of the Bible that bring us joy and that will lift us up.
These are the things that we are grateful for always, and yet, these prayers are not made every day of the week. For those who pray to the rosary each day, the Joyful Mysteries are intended to be prayed only on Monday and Saturday.
This allows for each of the other Mysteries to be recited throughout the week as well.
The 5 Joyful Mysteries are as follows:
- The Annunciation. Fruit of the Mystery: Humility
- The Visitation. Fruit of the Mystery: Love of Neighbor
- The Nativity. Fruit of the Mystery: Poverty
- The Presentation of Jesus at the Temple. Fruit of the Mystery: Obedience
- The Finding of Jesus in the Temple. Fruit of the Mystery: Piety
Through each of these mysteries, there is a sense of learning and growing with Jesus and through the experience of each event, there is a fruit or a skill that is learned and understood by those who listen.
By reciting these Joyful Mysteries as we recite the Rosary we are reminded of the good that Jesus and God have brought us and the times in which they continued to provide for us even when we were not worthy.
We are reminded of the beauty of Jesus and his love for us at any cost necessary.
How to Pray the Rosary ?
When you pray the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary you will actually start with the sign of the cross, a prayer, and the Apostles’ Creed.
"I believe in God,
the Father Almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,
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.
From here you will move to the first large bead, which represents the pope and the needs of the church, where you will pray 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.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
forever and ever.
This is followed by a recitation of Hail Mary on each of the next three small beads, representing the three theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity.
Full of Grace,
The Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women,
and blessed is the fruit
of thy womb, Jesus.
Mother of God,
pray for us sinners now,
and at the hour of our death.
You will now reach the second large bead on which you will say the Glory Be.
"Glory be to the Father,
and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning,
and ever shall be,
world without end.
When you reach the next large bead you are at the first decade and you will start with the first of the Joyful Mysteries. Over the first of the large beads, you will state the first Mystery and follow it with the Lord’s Prayer.
For each of the next 10 small beads, you will recite one Hail Mary and follow this up with the Glory Be just before reaching the next large bead. When you reach the next large bead this is the start of the second decade and you will start with the second of the Joyful Mysteries.
You will follow this with the Lord’s Prayer and then 10 Hail Mary’s over the next 10 small beads, followed by the Glory Be before you reach the third large bead. You will repeat this process all the way around your Rosary until you complete the 5 Joyful Mysteries.
Once you have completed all 5 of the decades and all 5 of the Joyful Mysteries you will recite the Salve Regina, The Loreto Litany and perform the sign of the cross. This closes the reciting of the Rosary.
In some variations of the Rosary, you may also recite the Gloria Patri or the Fatima Prayer. You may also add recitations of the Hail Holy Queen or the Miraculous Medal Prayer. There are others that are common in different parts of the world as well, including the Eucharistic Prayer and the Blessed Sacrament.
Other intentions are also allowed to be added before closing out the Rosary with the sign of the cross. The most important thing is to keep the tone reflective of the importance of this time and the solemnity of Jesus and all that he has done.
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Which Rosary Should I Pray ?
For each of the days of the week, you recite the Rosary, but you will recite different Mysteries depending on the day of the week.
As mentioned, the Joyful Mysteries are destined for Monday and Saturday, unless you are performing the Rosary with the Luminous Mysteries (the fifth of the set and the most recently added).
In this case, you will recite the Joyful Mysteries only on Monday and the Luminous Mysteries on Saturday. This divides out each of the Mysteries throughout the week.
Why Rosary is Important ?
Praying the Rosary is a very solemn process, but it is one where we can still take joy because we are able to remember the good that we have in our lives thanks to God and thanks to Jesus for his sacrifice.
On the days when the Joyful Mysteries are recited, we are reminded of these things, and on the days when we recite each of the other Mysteries, we are likewise reminded of the sacrifices and the glory that has been given to us.