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How the Rosary Got its Name

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Did you ever wonder how the Rosary got its name?  Rosary.s has its origins in Latin which has the meanings   garland of roses, the rose and often the Rose is the flower that commonly is thought of when one things of the Blessed Mother.  If you asked both Catholics and non-Catholics, what they think of when they think of the Catholic Church although the Crucifix or the Eucharist should be first to mind it is always with little exception the Rosary.   Most people have seen people praying the Rosary. Some put the Rosary around the mirror in their car. And some are older nuns with large ones hanging from their waist.  And as a child I remember the little plastic pink and blues ones they gave us at school. But the rosary has made a comeback in recent years.

During the 19660s after Vatican II the rosary seem to have fallen out of favor.  Its prominence was as it is today. Many stopped saying it as did Marian devotions, but Pope John Paul II was so committed to the Blessed Mother. Reciting the Rosary has come back in favor in the recent years. He so loved the Rosary he even went as far as to add 5 new mysteries in honor of his 25th year as Pope.

The rosary is devotional prayer in honor of the Virgin Mary. It has a series of prayers which are said sequentially.  First are the introductory prayers: one Apostles. Creed, which is a statement of faith.   Our Father (the Pater Noster or the Lord.s Prayer) which was given to us by Our Lord as part of the Sermon on the Mount,  and the  Hail Mary which is a two part pray which is what the Angel Gabriel announced to Mary, letting her know she was with child and the second part an intercessory prayer asking for Our Holy Mothers help.  And lastly there is one Glory Be, It.s commonly said that St. Dominic, the founder of the Order of Preachers known now as Dominicans, helped add the Rosary but there are certain parts of the rosary predated Dominic while others came into being only after his after his death.

Centuries before St.  Dominic, monks had begun to recite all 150 psalms on a regular basis. The town.s people would hear this and although they could not read, they would mimic the chant and used the Our Father reciting 150 of them in lieu of the 150 psalms.  Eventually the Hail Mary was added to the prayers recited. The intercessory part was added in later centuries  and the rosary moved closer to taking its present form.

Of late the Rosary has become used in both Catholics and non-Catholics, as they learn more about the rosary and makes more frequent use of it. The Protestants are adding more and more devotion to the rosary and starting to use the prayer as well.  This form of meditations reminds us of the wonderful essences of the Mother of God as well as her precious son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

This article was published on Friday 07 March, 2008.



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  • Back to main topic: About The Rosary
    The Rosary and Penance
    Twenty Reasons to Pray the Rosary
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