How to Pray the Rosary

To pray The Holy Rosary is easy and simple. In the begging it may seem complicated, but after you pray the rosary a few times, it will get easier, and at some point praying The Holy Rosary will become like second nature. Anyone can pray the Rosary, and any type of rosary beads can be used. To pray the Holy Rosary you need to learn six prayers, and to know the twenty Rosary Mysteries to meditate on each Rosary Mystery as you pray. Below are step by step instructions how to pray The Rosary. This is the most common way the rosary is prayed in North America, but there are other variations around the world as well.  


1. While keeping the cross make the sign of the Cross and say:

In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Then recite The Apostle's 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; the third day He arose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from thence He shall 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.

 2. Say Our Father (on the First Large beads, also known as Our Father beads or pater beads)

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.

3. Say Three Hail Marys (on the small beads, also known as Hail Mary Beads or Ave beads)

 Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou among 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. Amen.

4. Say the Glory be to the Father (before the next large bead)

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.

5. Announce the First Mystery, then say the Our Father (on the next large bead)

In what order to pray the Rosary Mysteries is your choice.  Pope John Paul II proposed the following schedule:

Monday – Joyful Mysteries
Tuesday – Sorrowful Mysteries
Wednesday – Glorious Mysteries
Thursday – Luminous Mysteries
Friday – Sorrowful Mysteries
Saturday – Joyful Mysteries
Sunday – Glorious Mysteries
Sundays of Christmas season – Joyful Mysteries
Sundays of Lent – Sorrowful Mysteries

6. Say ten Hail Marys, while meditating on the Mystery (on each small bead)

 7. Say the Glory be to the Father

8. Fatima Prayer, (optional after the Glory Be, at the conclusion of each decade, you may recite the Fatima Prayer)

 O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those who are in most need of Thy mercy.

9. Announce the Second Mystery, then say the Our Father, and repeat 6, 7, and 8 (8 is optional).

Announce the next Mystery, say the Our Father, Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery, Say the Glory Be to the Father, and Optional Say the Fatima Prayer.

10. When the fift mystery is completed, the Rosary is conluced with the 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 vale 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!

(Verse) Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God.
(Response) That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray. O GOD, whose only begotten Son, by His life, death, and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of eternal life, grant, we beseech Thee, that 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.

11. Make the Sign of the Cross.

More About The Rosary Prayers

Mysteries of The Rosaries