History of the Rosary
Many popular devotions such as the Rosary evolved from a particular practice of religious life. Nuns and priests were considered holy because they spent so much time praying. Except for some members of society’s privileged classes, most people had neither the time nor the literacy to pray in the same way. Ordinary family people were busy finding food and shelter for the family. While monks and nuns were able to recite the whole of the Psalter (150 Psalms) by praying the Divine Office (which is also known as the Prayer of the Church) in their normal daily routine, the laity were not. Ordinary people were able to reflect this prayer by praying one hundred and fifty Our Fathers. These Our Fathers were then replaced by one hundred and fifty Hail Mary’s. The Rosary was a mini Psalm book and therefore “Our Lady’s Psalter” was an early name given to the Rosary. As the Hail Mary’s were said, people would sometimes used a cord with counters on it to keep an accurate count. Eventually these became more structured until the familiar Rosary Beads evolved. The name Rosary means a crown of roses.
How to Pray the Rosary
Making your own Rosary
For details of how to pray the Rosary including the prayers used explore – Praying the Rosary
THE ROSARY SOME FACTS
- The Rosary is both one of the oldest and most popular prayers in the Catholic tradition.
- A meditative prayer it is entered into by repeating a cycle of prayers.
- It can be prayed alone or with others
- The intention of praying the Rosary is to enter into the events (mysteries) of Jesus’ life.
- Praying the Hail Mary repeatedly help the prayer to quietly reflect on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.