Why do Catholics pray the Rosary? There are so many reasons and benefits of the Rosary. It is a tradition that dates back centuries.
The beauty of the Rosary is that it is all based on scripture. The Rosary is universal, just like the Church. It is taking place all over the world, in different languages, at every minute of the day.
As a child, I have memories of praying the Rosary at home and at my grandfather’s home, but I mostly remember praying the Rosary after a loved one had passed away. I didn’t grow up praying the Rosary regularly, and it was even less as a young adult. Sure, I continued to pray the Rosary after the death of a loved one, memorials or on retreat. It was not until I was ordained as a deacon that I began to pray the Rosary more frequently.
One of my duties as a deacon is to lead a Rosary after a parishioner has passed away. My very first experience with this happened right before my ordination. It was simple enough — I figured I would show up with my Rosary beads and my booklet on how to pray the Rosary, so I would not make any mistakes in front of the family members. I was surprised at how fast the crowd prayed their part of the Rosary. It made me think, why do we rush our prayers? Is there a benefit to finishing in record time? I reflected on the Rosary for quite some time. Each Rosary that I led brought me deeper and deeper to understanding the Rosary.
We all have a tradition that we practice the Rosary. For some of us, we pray it in the car. For others, we pray it first thing in the morning. For others, we pray it before we go to bed. The time of day does not matter. Some of us pray it in English, others in their native language. I, personally, like to pray it bilingually, in English and Spanish, so that I can express it equally with those that I am praying it with. My parents prefer to pray it in Spanish, while my wife and children prefer to pray it in English.
I was taught to pray the Rosary by pronouncing each mystery and reflecting upon each mystery as I prayed each decade. The more that I tried to understand the Rosary, so I could better explain it to others, I found my way to the scriptural Rosary. Our traditional Rosary is beautiful, but I find the scriptural Rosary to be so much richer. Not only do I reflect on the mysteries of the Rosary – Glorious, Joyful, Luminous and Sorrowful but I am able to reflect on specific Bible verses that correspond before each our Father and Hail Mary. I have prayed more scriptural Rosaries in the past two years than I have prayed traditional Rosaries my whole life before.
The hidden secret of the Rosary is that we can all pray it. We know the Our Father and Hail Mary and even if we don’t, they will be pretty easy to remember once we pray the Rosary once. The prayers that may be a little challenging to remember are the Act of Contrition and the Hail Holy Queen. If you have not prayed the Rosary before, or you haven’t prayed it in a while, I encourage you to do so. Spend some time with our Holy Mother, so she can bring you closer to her Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ.