The Rosary is the best form of prayer that we can offer Our Lord and His Blessed Mother. Each Hail Mary that leaves our lips, if prayed well, is like sweet honey that pleases Jesus and Mary. For each time we utter the Hail Mary, we are not only praising her but giving glory to God by honoring His perfect creation. And just like a mother is pleased when her child calls up and compliments her, so too is Mary pleased with us, her children in Christ.
Mary gave the Rosary to St. Dominic and Blessed Alan de la Roche and urged them to proclaim the Rosary and spread devotion to it. Since then, Mary has appeared in apparitions begging and pleading with us to pray the Rosary daily. At Fatima, this was one of her biggest requests and one of her most urgent.
Daily recitation of the Rosary is one of the sweetest accomplishments we can have in our spiritual life. It requires us to have patience, focus, mental and physical will. While we pray the Rosary, we meditate on the life of Our Lord as well as Mary’s role. We give honor and glory to Our Mother, which gives honor and glory to Our Lord.
In his book, the Secret of the Rosary, St. Louis de Montfort says that for adults, a full Rosary is the recitation of all 15 decades, comprised of the Joyful, Sorrowful, and Glorious mysteries. Children are allowed to meditate on five decades of the Rosary, particularly that days’ mysteries. Since many of us have been told for some time that the Rosary is only five decades, we may not be spiritually ready to move on to all 15. But I think that if we have been praying five decades of the Rosary daily for some time, we should try to move our way up to reciting all 15.
For those of us who haven’t prayed the daily five decades of the Rosary, it would be an excellent spiritual habit to begin doing so. It takes some time to get used to, but the promises given to those who do recite the Rosary daily are well worth the time and energy.
It is also important to pray the Rosary well and to pray it attentively. However, I firmly believe that even if we pray the Rosary unwell, that is distracted, or rushed, or passively, it is far better than not praying the Rosary at all, assuming that this does not become a habit and does not become the norm. There are many audio versions of the Rosary that you can listen to that can aid you in staying focused or keep you on track.
As Lent is fast approaching, it might be beneficial to begin praying the Rosary if you haven’t already or have slipped away from this practice. For those who have been praying the Rosary daily, it might be good to try to say all 15 decades. The Rosary is a powerful tool against evil, and as we look at society, culture, and even within the Church, there is much evil spreading today.
Pray the Rosary daily! Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!