The Holy Rosary consists of three parts:

– The Joyful Part

– The Painful Part

– The Glorious Part

Each of these parts consists of five secrets.

The Joyful Part


1. The Annunciation (Lk 1:30-33)-the blessing of humility

30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
32  He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:
33  And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

2. The Visitation (Lk 1:50-53)-charity and compassion toward other people

50  And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.
51  He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
52  He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
53  He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.

3. The Nativity (Lk 2:10-12)-the gift of hope

10  And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12  And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

4. The Presentation (Lk 2:29-32)-purification of heart, mind and spirit

29  Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:
30  For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
31  Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
32  A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

5. The Finding of Jesus in the Temple (Lk 2:48-52)-the gift of wisdom

48  And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.
49  And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? 50  And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.
51  And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.
52  And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.

The Painful Part


1. The Agony in the Garden (Mt 26:38-39)-spirit of true repentance

38  Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.
39  And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

2. The Scourging at the Pillar (Jn 19:1)-freedom from earthly attachments and material concerns

1 Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.

3. The Crowning with Thorns (Mk 15:16-18)- the moral courage to do what is right despite personal pain and loss

16  And the soldiers led him away into the hall, called Praetorium; and they call together the whole band.
17  And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head,
18  And began to salute him, Hail, King of the Jews!

4. The Carrying of the Cross (Jn 19:17)-patience in difficult situations

17  And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:

5. The Crucifixion (Jn 19:28-30)-willingness to sacrifice in service of God’s will

28  After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.
29  Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.
30  When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.

The Glorious Part


1. The Resurrection (Mk 16:6-8)-an experience of physical healing and spiritual renewal

6  And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him.
7  But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.
8  And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid.

2. The Ascension (Acts 1:10-11)-a serenity that comes from transcending wordly concerns

10  And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
11  Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4)-the gift of inspiration

1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
3  And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
4  And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

4. The Assumption (Song of Songs 2:3-6)-the blessing of a peaceful death

3 As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.
4  He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.
5  Stay me with flagons, comfort me with apples: for I am sick of love.
6  His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me.

5. The Coronation of the Blessed Virgin (Lk 1:51-54)-an increase in devotion to Mary, Mother of God

51  He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
52  He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
53  He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.
54  He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;