What Mysteries on Which Days?

The Epiphany – not one of the mysteries of the Rosary. But this image is appropriate for two reasons: it is today’s liturgical feast, and the man on the far left (who was the donor of the image) is holding a rosary as he contemplate the scene. The painting is from the St. Columba Altarpiece by Rogier van der Weyden (c. 1455).

One of the confusing things about praying the Rosary is deciding which set of “mysteries” to pray on a given day. For those who learned about it from a young age it’s not usually a problem. For those who are converts to the faith or who, like me, picked up the Rosary at a later point in life, it is a bit of a… mystery.

The good news is that there is no right or wrong way: it is neither a matter of divine revelation or of Church law. But in any event, over the centuries Catholics have developed a common way of choosing which mystery to pray. Adopting this pattern can not only give greater structure to our prayer but also help us to feel more united with other Catholics throughout the world – and throughout the centuries – who have said the same prayers on the same days.

I am pleased, therefore, to provide a chart that lists what mysteries to pray on which days, according to the traditional configuration. You can download it by clicking on the icon below. It also takes into consideration the more recently-added Luminous Mysteries, which Blessed Pope John Paul II suggested could be added to the Rosary to enrich and renew it (though indicating that they are optional).

Click to download.

I hope that those who have made a resolution to pray more in the New Year will do so, at least in part, by praying the Rosary more regularly – if not daily.

Our Lady, Queen of the Holy Rosary, pray for us!

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