How to Pray the Rosary Beginner’s Guide

The rosary is divided into five groups of ten beads called decades. As we pray the rosary we meditate on the events of Our Lord’s life and Passion, which are called Mysteries. The repetition of the prayers assists in this prayerful meditation. The rosary, in essence, is a compendium of the Gospel and leads us, through the intercession of Our Lady, to contemplate Jesus Christ.

1a. Begin by praying the Sign of the Cross.

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

1b. On the crucifix pray 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. The third day He rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty. He shall come again 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.

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 1

2. One Our Father.

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.

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 2

3. Pray three Hail Marys for an increase in the virtues of faith, hope, and love, and follow with a Glory Be.

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.

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 3

4. Announce the first mystery then say the Our Father.

(Ex: “The first Joyful Mystery is the Annunciation.”)

It is suggested you focus on the mysteries according to the day of the week you are praying.

  • Joyful – Monday and Saturday
  • Glorious – Wednesday and Sunday
  • Sorrowful – Tuesday and Friday
  • Luminous – Thursday

[Read details on the mysteries of the rosary]

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 4

5a. Say ten Hail Mary’s for each of the 10 beads in the decade.

5b. After, pray one Glory Be.

5c. Conclude the decade with the Fatima Prayer.

O MY JESUS, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell; lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy. Amen.

[Read about the prayers of Fatima here.]

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 5

6. Announce the Second Mystery then say the Our Father.

Repeat Step 5 for the next decade of beads and continue with the Third, Fourth, and Fifth Mysteries in the same manner.

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 6

7. Lastly, pray the Hail Holy Queen and the concluding prayer.

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! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, 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 rewards of eternal life; grant, we beseech Thee, that by 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.

How to Pray the Rosary, Step 7

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