How to Pray the Rosary

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It is Mary Mother of Jesus who taught us How to pray the Rosary. It was her way of bringing us closer to Jesus by meditating on the life of Jesus.

This webpage will show you the basic prayers of the rosary and how to follow the rosary beads.

However, the question How to pray the Rosary could mean deeper for some of you. You might want to know the mysteries behind the rosary or why do we pray those different mysteries at different times of the year or different times of the week etc.

If you are after more information, click on Rosary Prayer.

The Rosary Prayers are easily described through the graphic of the rosary given below.

how to pray the rosary

How to Pray the Rosary is explained below in Steps 1-3

Step 1

First bless yourself with the sign of the cross, and holding onto the cross of the rosary, you say the Apostle's Creed.

On the next large bead – you say the Our Father followed by three Hail Marys on the three small beads. Then the Glory Be followed by the Fatima Prayer.

You then start the decades of the Rosary. Usually there are five decades in a Rosary or the little rosaries have one decade on which you can repeat the prayers five times.

Step 2

Before each decade read the relevant mystery which gives you a story about Jesus’ life to meditate upon while you say the prayers of that particular decade.

Start with the Our Father on the large bead, and then pray ten Hail Marys on the ten small beads. Conclude with the Glory Be. Then you recite the Fatima Prayer.

Repeat Step 2 on the next rosary decades until you have prayed all five decades.

Step 3

Once you reach the end of the fifth decade, you conclude with the Hail Holy Queen prayer and the Prayer after the Rosary.

Additions and alternate prayers:

Some of us might choose to say an intercessory prayer before each decade. i.e. you may offer the first decade for Peace in your country, or for priests and missionaries or for a sick family member etc.

Some might reflect upon parts of the mystery before each Hail Mary. This is called the Gospel -Meditated Rosary.

Words of the Rosary Prayers

You may also click on the prayer links, if you want to know more about the prayer itself).


The Apostle's Creed or the 'I Believe'

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Click on prayer to learn more or Go back to Steps 1-3

The Lord's Prayer or the 'Our Father'

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Click on prayer to learn more or Go back to Steps 1-3

The Hail Mary Prayer

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Click on Hail Mary Prayer to learn more or Go back to Steps 1-3

The Glory Be

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Click on prayer to learn more or Go back to Steps 1-3

The Fatima Prayer

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Go back to Steps 1-3

The Hail Holy Queen Prayer

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Click on Hail Holy Queen Prayer to learn more or Go back to Steps 1-3

Prayer after the Rosary

rosary prayer, how to pray the rosary

Go back to Steps 1-3

Other Links related to the Rosary

  • What are the Mysteries of the Rosary?
  • What is the importance of praying the Rosary?
  • What is the Divine Mercy Chaplet?
  • What is the Sacred Heart Rosary?
  • How to pray the Family Rosary with Children?
  • How to pray rosary as a community or with friends?

For other prayers, return to the page How to Pray.

Return from How to Pray the Rosary to Catholic Prayers.

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