Many mistake the Rosary as a worship of the Blessed Virgin Mary, but the focal point of the prayer is Jesus. One cannot subtract the 20 different mysteries of the Holy Rosary from the prayer of the Rosary. To do so would present an incomplete understanding and intention of the prayer.
For a complete list of the mysteries of the Holy Rosary, click here.
I have seen so many women (and men) totally moved by the contemplation of the mysteries of the Holy Rosary…mysteries that are centered on the love and mercy of Christ.
I love praying my Rosary. Right now, the beads I use were given to me by my dear friend. This set of Rosary beads are so dear to me, because they were touched to several of the public places Christ appeared in the Holy Land. Truth be told, it is one of the most basic and plain set of beads I’ve ever owned, but they are the most special to me because I have been blessed by the intention of the gift, and I treasure them from my friend.
I usually pray the Rosary on my way to work in the morning. I sometimes use the Android Rosary app. I love it because there is audio! Right from the beginning of the prayer, I am contemplating the mysteries of Christ. The Apostle’s Creed kicks it off…this is a statement of our faith…”I believe in ONE God.” “I believe in his only son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.” “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.”
In between the beginning and end of this initial prayer, the mystery of Christ’s redemptive suffering, death and resurrection is spoken. Who would do this for us? What does this reveal to us about God’s human nature? What does it say about His divine nature?
The Hail Mary itself is a prayer focused on loving Jesus, and turning to our Mother, asking her to pray to Jesus for us. It reminds us of our need for a Savior, and how that Savior came into the world as a human, participated in tradition of the day, obeyed His parents, learned a trade, and ultimately loved us enough to die for our sins.
This brings me to the mysteries. I would like to focus on the Luminous Mysteries. Does anyone know when these are prayed?? Does anyone know who introduced the Luminous Mysteries by discerning the wisdom of Holy Mother Church? Thursdays and Blessed Pope John Paul II.
The Luminous Mysteries take the pray-er through the public ministry of Christ. Starting with His baptism, and ending with the institution of the Eucharist, the Luminous Mysteries are a peek into Christ as both human and divine.
When I pray the Luminous Mysteries, I am uplifted! I hear the foundation of our Holy and Apostolic church. I see the wisdom of the Church fathers, starting with St. Peter, and ending with us – every time we receive the Eucharist in Mass. When I pray the Luminous Mysteries, I am reminded of the wisdom of the church, and of Blessed Pope John Paul II. His work was very visible, and his writings are prolific. I love learning more about him, who emulated Christ, and lead our Church with such grace, faith, and obedience. What an incredible example! Especially in this day and age, we need those examples: the example to be courageous in living the faith, knowledgeable, or seeking knowledge and wisdom.
3 Strategies to Incorporate the Holy Rosary into Your Prayer Life:
- If you work, pray the Holy Rosary on your way to work. Praying the Rosary before work does a few things: a) prepares you spiritually for your day; b) calms your nerves in traffic; and c) focuses you on the things that matter in the day.
- As you hear the needs of others throughout the day, turn to the mysteries of the Rosary. For example, there is a little boy who is the son of a fellow blogger who was involved in a farming accident and sustained burns over all of his body. I have no clue who this little boy is. His name is Fulton. I pray for him every day. When I pray for him, I contemplate the Sorrowful Mysteries and how Christ suffered. I know that little Fulton’s suffering can be offered to Christ. The suffering of his family, who is so focused on his healing, can be offered on behalf of the family to Christ.
- Rosary beads can also be used to pray the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy (see link here). This Chaplet is so uplifting, and reminds us of Christ’s beautiful mercy and love for us. The Chaplet pulls us deeper into the mystery of Christ.
We may not understand every thing on this side of Heaven related to the mysteries of Christ…AND THAT IS AS IT SHOULD BE! Our call, no matter our station in life, is to know, love and serve God. The Holy Rosary, in its full prayer with the contemplation of the mysteries, put us in the right direction to know, love, and serve God.
Peace of Christ to you and yours!
Copyright 2013 Mary Wallace
About the Author
Mary Wallace, PhD, is a devout Catholic wife, mother of 4 daughters, and college administrator. She is co-host of a Catholic radio show: Faith and Good Counsel, on Baton Rouge Catholic Community Radio. Mary is also a contributing writer at the Integrated Catholic Life. Follow Mary on Facebook.