Are you wondering whether you should start praying the Rosary? Let me convince you that you should. Here are the top 10 reasons to pray the rosary:
10 Reasons to Pray the Rosary
1. It’s a Meditation on the Life of Christ
Contrary to what many think, the Rosary is a Christo-centric prayer. Meaning, the Rosary is a prayer all about Jesus Christ.
Though it involves many prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary, seeking her intercession as the Mother of God and the Mother of the Church, the Rosary is less about the repetition of “Hail Mary’s” and more about the meditation that accompanies those “Hail Mary’s”.
What do I mean?
Well, on the surface, the Rosary appears to be just an order of prayers one prays with their lips. But the reality is that these prayers prayed with the lips are ultimately intended to draw one into meditation on the life of Jesus.
If you don’t believe me, consider that each decade of the Rosary involves a particular mystery of Christ’s life that the person is invited to meditate on.
2. It’s a Biblical Prayer
Though the Rosary, as a total set of prayers, isn’t explicitly detailed in the Bible, the prayers themselves, such as the “Our Father” and the “Hail Mary” contain biblical verses themselves.
Regarding the “Hail Mary,” the first part of it is taken directly from the Bible, combining the greeting of the Archangel Gabriel to our Lady at the Annunciation (Luke 1:28) and St. Elizabeth’s greeting to our Lady at the Visitation (Luke 1:42).
Whereas the second part (“Holy Mary, Mother of God…”) is a petition for our Lady’s intercession and isn’t explicitly from the Bible but reflects her role as recognized in Catholic tradition.
In addition, as I mentioned above, the Rosary is ultimately a prayer of meditation on the life of Jesus Christ in the Gospels.
Therefore, whenever we pray the Rosary, we are coming into contact with the mysteries of Sacred Scripture. In fact, the Rosary was originally intended to be an aid to those who were illiterate and unable to read the Gospels for themselves.
3. It Has Been Recommended By Many Saints
It is difficult to find a saint in modern times that didn’t have a deep devotion to the Holy Rosary. Nearly all of the heavy-hitting saints had a devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary through the Rosary.
Here are a few powerful quotes from those saints:
“Some people are so foolish that they think they can go through life without the help of the Blessed Mother. Love the Madonna and pray the rosary, for her Rosary is the weapon against the evils of the world today. All graces given by God pass through the Blessed Mother.” — St. Padre Pio
“Say the Holy Rosary. Blessed be that monotony of Hail Mary’s which purifies the monotony of your sins!” — St. Josemaria Escriva
“The Rosary is a long chain that links heaven and earth. One end of it is in our hands and the other end is in the hands of the Holy Virgin…The Rosary prayer rises like incense to the feet of the Almighty. Mary responds at once like a beneficial dew, bringing new life to human hearts.” — St. Therese of Lisieux
4. It has Been Promoted By Many Popes
The Rosary, in its more primitive form, was officially approved by the Catholic Church in the 15th century under the papacy of Pope Sixtus IV.
In the 16th century the Rosary became structured around 15 specific mysteries by Pope St. Pius V, who also instituted the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary on October 7, 1571.
Pope St. John Paul II later added the other 5 mysteries of the Rosary (Luminous Mysteries) in 2002 when he wrote his Apostolic Letter Rosarium Viginis Mariae.
Between 1571 and 2002, the Popes never ceased to promote the recitation of the Holy Rosary.
Here are some of those encouraging words from the holy pontiffs:
“With the Rosary, we allow ourselves to be guided by Mary, model of faith, in meditating on the mysteries of Christ, and day after day we are helped to assimilate the Gospel, so that it shapes all our lives.” — Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
“The Rosary is the most beautiful and the most rich in graces of all prayers; it is the prayer that touches most the Heart of the Mother of God…and if you wish peace to reign in your homes, recite the family Rosary.” — Pope Saint Pius X
“Give me an army saying the Rosary and I will conquer the world.” — Blessed Pope Pius IX
“The Rosary is a powerful weapon to put the demons to flight and to keep oneself from sin . . . if you desire peace in your hearts, in your homes, and in your country, assemble each evening to recite the Rosary. Let not even one day pass without saying it, no matter how burdened you may be with many cares and labors.” — Pope Pius XI
“The Rosary is the most excellent form of prayer and the most efficacious means of attaining eternal life. It is the remedy for all our evils, the root of all our blessings. There is no more excellent way of praying.” — Pope Leo XIII
5. Our Lady Has Asked Us To
The Blessed Virgin Mary has been known to appear many times throughout the world (especially in modern times), and in these apparitions she often reiterates the same message: pray the rosary.
Here are five different times Our Lady, in these apparitions, has asked us to pray the Holy Rosary:
Our Lady of Fatima (Portugal, 1917)
“Say the Rosary every day to bring peace to the world and the end of the war.”
Our Lady of Akita (Japan, 1973-1981)
“The only arms which will remain for you will be the Rosary and the Sign left by My Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. With the Rosary, pray for the Pope, the bishops and priests.”
Our Lady of Cuapa (Nicaragua, 1980)
“I have shown you the Glory of Our Lord and you people will acquire this if you are obedient to Our Lord, to the Lord’s Word; if you persevere in praying the Holy Rosary and put into practice the Lord’s Word.”
Our Lady of Kibeho (Rwanda, 1981)
“Repent, repent, repent! When I tell you this, I speak also to all the others. Men of our times have emptied each thing of its true meaning… Meditate about the Passion of Jesus, and on the deep Sorrows of His Mother. Recite the Rosary every day, and also the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows of Mary, to obtain the favor of repentance.”
Our Lady of the Rosary (Argentina, 1983-1990)
“Prayer, my daughter, prayer; how many mouths still remain closed, without saying at least a prayer that draws them nearer to the Lord. The Holy Rosary is the weapon to which the enemy fears the most; it is also the refuge of those who look for lightening their grief and it is the door to enter to My Heart. Glory to the Lord for the Light that He gives to the world.”
6. The 15 Promises of Our Lady
There are many spiritual benefits to praying the Holy Rosary. However, there is a long-standing tradition that Our Lady revealed to St. Dominic 15 promises to those who prayed the Rosary daily. You can find all 15 promises of the Rosary here.
7. It Deepens Our Relationship With Jesus
As I mentioned above, though the Rosary is a prayer of the Blessed Virgin Mary, it is ultimately all about Jesus. The end goal of praying the Rosary is to draw us more intimately into communion with Christ.
All prayer and devotion in the Christian Life is meant to deepen our relationship with Jesus. And the Rosary is no different. In fact, the Rosary has been shown to be one of the most powerful means of doing so.
For reasons only fully known to God, the Lord has ordained that all His children come to Him through His Mother.
St. Augustine makes this point beautifully: “The world being unworthy to receive the son of God directly from the hands of the Father, he gave his son to Mary for the world to receive him from her.”
Therefore, let us turn to our Lady through the Holy Rosary and allow her to bring us to our Lord.
8. Through It We Demonstrate Our Love For Our Lady
As a Communion of Saints, the Christian Life is not only about a relationship with Jesus. It is also about the relationships between the members of His Body, the Church.
Therefore, both through interaction with other members of the Body of Christ here on earth, and through prayer with the Saints in Heaven or for the souls in Purgatory, we are able to cultivate a relationship with other members of the Church.
Among all the Saints, the most important relationship we have is to the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is because she is not only the Mother of Christ, but she is our Mother.
While hanging on the cross, our Lord gave her to us (“Behold your mother”) , and we are expected to love her just as He loves her.
Therefore, what better way to love our Lady than to pray her Holy Rosary?
9. It’s An Effective Weapon Against Evil
As many saints, popes, and even exorcists have attested, the Holy Rosary is a great weapon against evil. Not only does it help us to conquer sin and vice, it also causes the devil himself to tremble.
Sacred Scripture describes the sword of the spirit to be the Word of God, and the prayers of the Rosary are filled with the Word of God… therefore, the Holy Rosary makes for a great spiritual weapon.
If you’re struggling with a particular sin or vice, and can’t seem to overcome it, try praying the Rosary everyday with the intention to overcome it.
In doing so, one of two things is likely to occur: Either you will overcome the sin or you will give up the Rosary.
10. It Brings Order and Peace Into Our Lives
The Holy Rosary is a profound means of obtaining peace and order in our lives.
Practically speaking, developing a habit of praying the Rosary requires discipline. It also requires making regular time for a quiet space in our lives to pray.
Spiritually speaking, our Lord has ordained that all graces given to us by Him pass through the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is also the spouse of the Holy Spirit, and therefore, capable of gaining for us the peace that only comes from the Holy Spirit (one of the Holy Spirit’s fruits).
How to Develop the Habit of Praying the Rosary Daily
Here are a few easy steps to begin praying the Rosary daily:
1. Pick a time that you will pray the Rosary (Make it the same time every day)
2. Start with 1 decade of the Rosary per day. After the first week, pray 2 decades per day. After the second week, pray 3 decades per day. And so forth…
3. If you fail to pray your Rosary one day, don’t be discouraged. Just do it again tomorrow as if you never missed it.
Before You Go…
Praying the Rosary is a definitely a key part of our spiritual lives, but not apart from our participation in Holy Mass.
If you’ve been struggling to remain focus or deepen your devotion to the Lord in the Eucharist you’ll want to check out these 5 Prayers Before Mass and Communion that will help you to approach Mass and Holy Communion well.