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A white rosary.

The Rosary or Psalter of the Blessed Virgin Mary is a Marian pious practice which consists in contemplating on the Mysteries of Jesus Christ[1] and which encourages the reading of Sacred Scriptures.[2] In the Middle Ages it substituted for the praying of the Psalms - hence the Rosary being called the Psalter (Psalms) of the Blessed Virgin Mary.[3] The Third Glorious Mystery of the Rosary is particularly useful for meditating on the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost,[4] and the Joyous and Sorrowful Mysteries - which are meditations on the Incarnation and on the Redemption, respectively - can help orient prayer toward Christ during Eucharistic adoration.[5]


The rite of blessing of the rosary beads, followed by the blessing of those who meditate on the life of Christ, signifies the Catholic Church's esteem for the Rosary. This blessing can be made publically on a pilgrimage to a Marian shrine, a Marian feast day (such as the Feast of the Rosary), or at the end of October,[6] which is the month dedicated to the Rosary.[7] Below are the two official formulas for the rite of blessing of the rosary beads.[8]


The priest, wearing a stole, says:

V. Adiutórium nostrum in nómine Dómini.
R. Qui fecit cælum et terram.
V. Dóminus vobísum.
R. Et cum spíritu tuo.

V. Orémus. Omnípotens et miséricors Deus, qui proper exímiam caritátem tuam qua dilexísti nos, Fílium tuum unigénitum, Dóminum nostrum Iesum Christum de cælis in terram descéndere, et de beatíssimæ Vírginis Maríæ Dóminæ nostræ útero sacratíssimo, Angelo nuntiánte, carnem suscípere, crucémque ac mortem subíre, et tértia die glorióse a mórtuis resúrgere voluísti, ut nos eríperes de potestátem diáboli: obsecrámus imménsam cleméntiam tuam ut hæc signa (vel hoc signum) Rosárii in honórem et laudem eiúsdem Genetrícis Fílii tui ab Ecclésia tua fidéli dicáta (vel dicátum) bene- + dícas et sanctí- + fices, eísque (vel eíque) tantam infúndas virtútem Spíritus + Sancti, ut quicúmque horum quódlibet (vel hoc) secum portáverit, atque in domo sua revénter tenúerit, et in eis (vel eo) ad te, secúndum huius sanctæ Societátis institúta, divina contemplándo mystéria, devóte oráverit, salúbri et perseveránti devotióne abúndet, sitque consors et párticeps ómnium gratiárum, privilegiórum et indulgentiárum, quæ eídem Societáti per Sanctam Sedem Apostólicam concéssa fuérunt, ab omni hoste visíbli et invisíbili semper et ubíque in hoc sculo liberétur, et in éxitu suo ab ipsa beatíssima Vírgine María Dei Genetríce tibi plenus bonis opéribus præsentári mereátur. Per eúndem Dóminum nostrum Iesum Christum Fílium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitáte eiúsdem Spíritus Sancti Deus, per ómnia saecula sæculórum.

R. Amen.

Then those blessed are sprinkled with holy water.


V. Ad laudem et glóriam Deíparæ Vírginis Maríæ, in memóriam mysteriórum vitæ, mortis et resurrectiónis eiúsdem Dómini nostri Iesu Christi, bene- + dicátur et sancti- + ficétur hæc sacratíssimi Rosárii coróna: in nómine Patris + et Fílii, et Spíritus Sancti.

R. Amen.

If several Rosaries are blessed, than the plural is used. Use of the stole and holy water is optional.


There are fifty-seven ways of praying the Rosary. Some of these forms include their own rosary beads. These rosaries include:[9][10][11]


The Church teaches that the Rosary does not discredit other prayers and it is not necessary to be recited by the faithful.[12]

The Church recommends reflection on the appropriate verses of the Scriptures and Catechism of the Catholic Church for each Mystery.[13]


  1. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy The Rosary, or Psalter of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is one of the most excellent prayers to the Mother of God...The Rosary is essentially a contemplative prayer,...
  2. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy Certain forms of popular piety, such as the Via Crucis and the Rosary, encourage the use of Sacred Scripture, which can easily be related to particular prayers or gestures that have been learned by heart, especially those biblical passages recounting the life of Christ which are easily remembered.
  3. Directory on Popular Piety and the the late middle ages, the rosary tended to substitute for the psalter;...
  4. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy The third glorious mystery of the Rosary invites the faithful to meditate on the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
  5. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy Given the close relationship between Christ and Our Lady, the rosary can always be of assistance in giving prayer a Christological orientation, since it contains meditation of the Incarnation and the Redemption.
  6. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy The Blessing for Rosary Beads indicates the Church's esteem for the Rosary. This rite emphasises the community nature of the Rosary. In the rite, the blessing of rosary beads is followed by the blessing of those who meditate on the mysteries of the life, death and resurrection of Our Lord so as to "establish a perfect harmony between prayer and life". As indicated in the Benedictionale, Rosary beads can be blessed publicly, on occasions such as a pilgrimage to a Marian shrine, a feast of Our Lady, especially that of the Holy Rosary, and at the end of the month of October.
  7. Special Devotions for Months The Holy Rosary (feast of the Holy Rosary, first Sunday in October).
  8. Rosary Blessings and Indulgences
  9. A Treasury of Chaplet Devotions
  10. The Missionary Rosary
  11. The Year of the Rosary
  12. Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy "In recommending the value and beauty of the Rosary to the faithful, care should be taken to avoid discrediting other forms of prayer, or of overlooking the existence of a diversity of other Marian chaplets which have also been approved by the Church". It is also important to avoid inculcating a sense of guilt in those who do not habitually recite the Rosary: "The Rosary is an excellent prayer, in regard to which, however, the faithful should feel free to recite it, in virtue of its inherent beauty".
    • Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy The faithful should be made conscious of the preeminence of the Liturgy over any other possible form of legitimate Christian prayer. While sacramental actions are necessary to life in Christ, the various forms of popular piety are properly optional. Such is clearly proven by the Church's precept which obliges attendance at Sunday Mass. No such obligation, however, has obtained with regard to pious exercises, notwithstanding their worthiness or their widespread diffusion. Such, however, may be assumed as obligations by a community or by individual members of the faithful.
  13. The Mysteries of the Rosary As an aid to the meditative and contemplative journey of the Rosary, two texts are given for each 'mystery': one from Sacred Scripture, the other from the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
    • Rosarium Virginis Mariae Rediscover the Rosary in the light of Scripture, in harmony with the Liturgy, and in the context of your daily lives.