Roses of Prayer for The Queen of Heaven
by Rev. Daniel A. Lord, S.J.
||First Joyful Mystery - The Annunciation
Adam and Eve sinned in Paradise, they lost their right
to happiness. But God promised
His only Son to regain this happiness for them. Out
of all the world, God chose Mary to be the Mother
of His Son. One day the Angel Gabriel from heaven
appeared to her. "Hail, full of grace!" he
cried. And he told her that she was to be the Mother
of the Most High. Mary answered, "Behold the
handmaid of the Lord!" At that moment the Second
Person of the Blessed Trinity, God’s Son, entered
the world. This is called the Incarnation.
Mystery - The Visitation
The Angel Gabriel told Mary that
her cousin Elizabeth, though an old lady, was to
have a little son. This
son was St. John the Baptist. So immediately Mary
hurried over the hills to take care of her cousin.
When Elizabeth saw her, she cried, "Blessed
art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of
thy womb." Mary answered by singing the Magnificat.
Mary stayed with her cousin until John the Baptist
was born. She was Elizabeth’s little nurse
and maid servant. When John was born and Elizabeth
was strong again, Mary returned to her own home to
wait for the birth of her own dear Son, Jesus.
||Third Joyful Mystery
- The Nativity
proud Roman Emperor ordered all his citizens to pay
their taxes in their home
cities. So Joseph,
the husband of Mary, and Mary traveled to Bethlehem.
Bethlehem was so full of visitors they could not
find a place to sleep. So they went out to a little
stable in a hill. And there Jesus, the Savior of
the world, was born. A glorious star shone in the
heavens. Angels sang, "Glory to God in the highest
and on earth peace to men of good will!" Shepherds
came to adore the newborn King. Wise Men from the
east brought Him lovely gifts. Mary was deeply happy.
She lifted Him high for the world to see. This was
the first Christmas.
Fourth Joyful Mystery - The Presentation
All men and women are the children of God. The
holy Jews carried each first born son to the Temple
and offered him to God. Then in his place, they
gave God a lamb or, if they were poor, a pair of
pure white doves. So Mary carried her Son to the
Temple. She offered Him to God. Then, because she
was poor, she offered in His place two white doves.
But a great prophet called Simeon saw the Baby
and knew this was the Savior of the world. He cried
aloud in his joy. And a wise old lady named Anna
blessed Him and His dear Mother. Then Mary carried
her Son home again. She was His beloved nurse and
teacher and protector.
||Fifth Joyful Mystery
- The Finding in the Temple
Jewish Temple was God’s house on earth.
When Jesus was twelve years old, Joseph and Mary
took Him to Jerusalem where the Temple stood. Jesus
loved His Father’s house. So when Mary and
Joseph returned to Nazareth, their home town, He
stayed behind. He knew that God wished Him to stay
longer in His Father’s house. Soon Mary and
Joseph found that Jesus was lost. They hurried back
to the Temple. For three days and nights they looked
everywhere for Him. Finally, they found Him seated
among the doctors and priests. He was asking them
wise questions and teaching them about the Savior.
He did this because this was "His Father’s
business." Then quietly He returned to Nazareth
with Joseph and Mary and for the rest of His youth,
He was perfectly obedient to them.
|| First Sorrowful Mystery - The Agony in the Garden
who commits a sin is a criminal against the good God.
So he should be
punished. But Jesus,
our Saviour, came to take the sinner’s place.
He asked God to punish Him instead of us who really
are the guilty ones. This suffering of Christ we
call His Passion. On Holy Thursday after He gave
us the Blessed Sacrament, He went into a lonely
garden called Gethsemane. He looked ahead and saw
all He was going to suffer. He saw all our sins,
ugly, filthy, evil. And the thought of His Passion
and our sins made Him sweat blood. This blood poured
down upon the ground in His agony. Then Judas came
with the soldiers. Like a traitor he kissed Jesus.
The soldiers led Him away to death.
Mystery - The Scourging
Pilate, the Roman Governor, knew that Jesus was
not guilty. But all the people cried out for His
death. And because Jesus had taken our place, God,
His Father, was willing to let His Son die. Pilate
ordered Him to be whipped. The soldiers fastened
Him to a stone column. Then with heavy whips, they
beat His back. Jesus suffered terribly from this
scourging. But He did not cry out. For He knew who
many people commit sins with their bodies. We sometimes
call these the sins of the flesh. So He wanted to
suffer for their sad sins. He wanted us to be strong
against this kind of ugly sin.
Mystery - The Crowning with Thorns
was the King of Kings, the King of the Jews. But the
Roman soldiers thought
this was funny. "Still,
let’s pretend that He is," one of them
cried. "For a joke let’s make Him a crown." So
they picked up a branch of cruel thorns, and made
it into a crown. They pushed it into the head of
our Savior. It hurt Him terribly. The blood ran down
into His eyes. The thorns tore His skin and reached
toward His brain. Then the soldiers put a reed in
His hand. They threw a dirty red cloak over His shoulders.
They laughed at Him and cried, "Hail to the
King!" Jesus suffered all this because of our
sins of thought and pride.
Mystery - The Carrying of the Cross
Pilate heard the people cry out, "Crucify Him!" So
Pilate ordered Him to be nailed on a cross. But first
He had to carry His own cross up to the top of Calvary.
The cross was very heavy. The soldiers put it on
His shoulder and it rubbed against His torn flesh.
They dragged Him through the city and up the hill
to die. The people laughed at Him and threw rocks
and mud. When He fell, the soldiers kicked Him to
His feet. Once along the way, He met Mary, His Mother.
But she could do nothing to help her dear Son. Veronica
ran out of the crowd and wiped His face with her
veil. Some good women wept for Him. And Simon was
forced to help Him carry the cross.
Mystery - The Crucifixion
For three hours our dear Lord
hung on the cross. He was taking on Himself the
punishment for our sins.
He prayed to His Father in heaven, "Father,
forgive them." He forgave the terrible sinner
who became the Good Thief. He gave us His own dear
Mother. He cried out because He was thirsty for our
love. At length, He knew that God had forgiven our
sins. Once more, we had the right to enter heaven.
So He dropped His head and died. "Greater love
than this no man hath than to lay down his life for
||First Glorious Mystery - The Resurrection
Christ died on Good Friday. He was buried in the
Holy Sepulchre. For three days He lay dead. Soldiers
guarded the tomb. The Roman Governor, Pilate, placed
on the heavy door the seal of Rome. Then Sunday
morning dawned. Beautiful light appeared in the
sky. The soldiers saw light pouring from the grave
where Jesus lay. The great, heavy stone rolled
away of itself. And Jesus, glorious, strong, beautiful,
and alive, came forth from the tomb. He visited
His dear Mother and thanked her. He showed Himself
to Mary Magdalen who was weeping for Him. He appeared
to His Apostles. He proved to us that we shall
live forever. This was the first Easter.
Glorious Mystery - The Ascension
For forth days Jesus remained on earth after His
Resurrection. He established His Church and gave
it wonderful powers. He talked to His friends, telling
them about heaven, and about the work they must do
first for God and souls. Then one Thursday, He took
them all up on Mount Olivet. He gave them His last
instructions and said goodbye. Slowly by His own
power, He began to rise from the earth. He stretched
out His hands to bless them. He smiled down for the
last time upon His Mother. At last a cloud covered
Him, and He entered the joys of heaven. An angel
then came to the Apostles and told them to go back
and begin to work for souls. Some day they too would
enter heaven and be happy forever.
Mystery - The Descent of the Holy Ghost
had promised the Apostles, "I will send
you the Holy Spirit. He will be your Comforter." After
Jesus left them, the Apostles were afraid. So they
hid themselves in the little apartment of Mary. They
prayed and waited for nine days. This was the first
Novena. Then on Pentacost, over their heads, the
Apostles saw parted tongues of fire. A tongue settled
on each of their heads. The Holy Spirit had come.
At once, they went out and began to tell everyone
about Jesus. They spoke so strongly that thousands
believed and were baptized. This was the birthday
of the Catholic Church.
Mystery - The Assumption
For a long time, Jesus left His
Mother on earth. He wanted her to take care of
His Apostles, and be
the Mother of the new Church. Then one day He quietly
sent for her, and with a smile she died. The Apostles
came from all over the earth to be at her deathbed.
They carried her body to her grave and laid it gently
in the ground. Saint Thomas came late, after the
burial. When the Apostles took him to the grave,
they found it empty and open. Where Mary’s
body had rested, beautiful lilies were growing. Jesus
had sent His angels to bring the body of His Mother
to heaven. It was too pure to rest in the earth.
It had served Him so well that it must at once enjoy
the happiness of heaven.
||Fifth Glorious Mystery - The Coronation
Mary had served Jesus all her
life. She had loved and served God with her whole
heart and soul. She
had never committed the slightest sin. So in heaven
she was to have her reward. Body and soul, Mary
entered heaven. Her Son, Jesus, met her and took
her in His grateful arms. The heavenly Father said, "This
is My dear devoted daughter." The Divine Son
said, "This is My dear faithful Mother." The
Holy Spirit said, "This is my sweet, pure
bride." And the saints and angels all cried, "This
is our Queen!" So Jesus, the King of Kings,
seated her on her throne. On her head He placed
a glorious crown of stars. But Mary looked down
to see her children on earth. For now she could
help her sons and daughters to reach heaven. Mary
is the Queen of Heaven. But she is our loving Mother
who protects us with her power.
for the Queen
Mary is the lovely
Mother of the world. She is the beautiful Queen of
Heaven. Now the sweetest gift that people give to a
mother and a queen is a bouquet of flowers. Mary, since
that first Christmas, has been wonderfully good to
all her children. So we love to give her roses. Since
she is in heaven, it is hard to give her roses from
our gardens. Yet we do this when we decorate her shrines.
Always we can give her our Holy Rosary, a beautiful bouquet
of prayers. So we lay the Holy Rosary in the arms of our
Queen and Mother.
all the great saints, Saint Dominic deeply loved
Mary. He dedicated his splendid priests, the Dominicans,
to her. Dominic taught men to love the name of Jesus.
He longed to make them know and love the sweet Mother
of Jesus. He wanted them to pray to her, to think of
her, to recall the wonderful life of Jesus and Mary.
Mary loved her son, Dominic. So she gave him a string
of beads like a necklace. She taught him how to use
it. She asked him to give it to the world. And from
that day on, men and women have used the Holy Rosary when
they pray to God’s Mother.
the Holy Rosary
when we pray to Mary, we talk to her. Sometimes,
pray to Mary, we just think about her and her Son.
When we use the Holy Rosary, we talk to her and think
about her and Jesus at the same time. For our vocal
we use the Apostles Creed, the Our Father, the
Hail Mary, the Glory Be to the Father. For our mental
prayers, we think about the great events in the
and her divine Son called Mysteries. So when we
use the Holy Rosary, we talk to the Blessed Trinity, to
Father in Heaven, and to Mary herself. And all
the while we keep think about the great events that
the life of Jesus and Mary on earth.
The Greatest String of Beads
we call the Holy Rosary our "beads." Almost
every Catholic carries these beads in his pocket
or in her
Little children love to say them with their parents.
When Catholics die, usually their beads are twined
through their fingers and they are buried with
them. Great saints have called their beads a ladder
up to heaven. But simple, uneducated people loved
them too. Today, good Catholics say them when they
in street cars, while they wait for friends, at
night in their rooms, driving their autos, wherever
have a minute to think of Jesus and talk to Mary.
Way the Holy Rosary is Said
Most beads are
only one-third the full Holy Rosary. The beads start with
a crucifix. On this, we recite the Apostles Creed.
Then on all the large beads we say the Our Father.
At the beginning of the Holy Rosary there is one of these
large beads. Following it are three small beads. On
each bead we say the Hail Mary. The beads are connected
with a chain. When we come to the big space that follows
each group of Hail Marys we say the Glory Be to the
Father. The beads are grouped in decades called Mysteries;
one Our Father, ten Hail Marys, and one Glory Be. On
a small set of beads, there are five decades. On a
complete Holy Rosary, there are fifteen decades.
like to say important things over and over again.
Our mother loves to hear us say repeatedly, "Mother,
I love you!" When a hero passes, the crowds
keep shouting, "Hooray! Hooray!" So
in the Holy Rosary we repeat the beautiful Hail Mary.
loves to think we greet her over and over again.
But while we do this, we keep thinking about
her and her Son. We pick a scene from her life
the life of our Lord. We think of that while
we say one
decade. So with our voices we praise and love
God and Mary. And all the time, we keep thinking
the things that made her happy, the cruel Passion
of Our Lord that made her sad, the glorious events
that made her Queen of Heaven.
of the Week
when we start the Holy Rosary, we ask ourselves what
day of the week it
is. If it is Monday or Thursday, we say, "For
the five decades of my beads, I will think of the things
that filled Mary’s heart with joy." These
are the Joyful Mysteries. If it is Tuesday or Friday,
we say, "Today I will think of the things that
made the heart of our Mother sad." These are the
Sorrowful Mysteries. If it is Wednesday or Saturday,
we say, "This day I will think only of those things
which made Mary deeply happy." These are the
Glorious Mysteries. If it is Sunday in Advent and
up to Lent,
we think of the Joyful Mysteries. During Lent on
Sunday we think of the Sorrowful Mysteries. The
rest of the
year on Sundays we think of the Glorious Mysteries.
Indulgences of the Holy Rosary
When you get a
new Holy Rosary, you should have it blessed (if a priest
is available). The Popes have loved the Holy Rosary very
much. So they gave priests power to bless the Holy Rosary,
and when they do, each bead carries with it an Indulgence.
This Indulgence is the remission of the temporal punishment
we must suffer for our sins either on earth or in Purgatory.
There are various kinds of Holy Rosary blessings and each
has a different kind of Indulgence. One blessing is
called the Dominican, for the great Saint Dominic who
received the Holy Rosary from Mary. Another is called the
Apostolic. This is the blessing of the Pope. Another
is called the Crosier, which makes us think of the
cross on the Holy Rosary .
Sure Sign of Predestination
Pius X said: "If
you want peace in your heart, in your home, in your
country, assemble together every night and say the
Holy Rosary . Many complain that it is tiring repetition – that
they cannot meditate on the mysteries. Our Blessed
Mother gave this advice to St. Dominic: "This
is why, before doing anything else, priests should
try to kindle a love of prayer in people’s hearts
and especially a love of my Holy Rosary . If only they would
all start saying it and persevere, God, in His mercy,
could hardly refuse to give them His grace. So I want
you to preach My Holy Rosary !" St. Louis de Montfort
said: "I beg of you to beware of thinking of the
Holy Rosary as something of little importance – as
do ignorant people and even several great but proud
scholars. Far from being insignificant, the Holy
is a priceless treasure which is inspired by God." He
also tells us: "For never will anyone who says
his Holy Rosary every day become a formal heretic or be
led astray by the devil." St. Dominic prayed
to Our Lady that she would force the devils, who possessed
a man, to reveal the truth about devotion to her. The
devils were forced by Our Lady to reveal: "Now
that we are forced to speak we must also tell you this:
Nobody who perseveres in saying the Holy Rosary will be
damned, because she obtains for her servants the grace
of true contrition for their sins and by means of this
they obtain God’s forgiveness and mercy." St.
Teresa of Avila tells us how priceless a treasure it
is by showing the value and merits of a single HAIL
MARY. Shortly after her death, she appeared to one
of the sisters of her community and told her that she
was willing to return to a life of suffering until
the end of time to merit the degree of glory which
God rewards one devoutly recited Hail Mary. What
a wonderful consolation to know that we can be
assured of salvation by giving just fifteen minutes
to praying the Holy Rosary .
- True Catholic
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