The Rosary is one of the most well-known, beautiful, and practiced devotions in the Catholic Church. Below are the opening prayers to begin the Rosary. There’s also a printable prayer card that can be useful to learn the Rosary beginning prayers, feel free to print and distribute. If you are new to praying the Rosary we also have a complete Rosary guide and illustrative guide.
The Beginning Prayers of the Rosary
Before starting the Rosary, it can be helpful to name a personal intention for which you’d like to pray a Rosary for. This can help you to focus and participate in the Rosary, though not necessary.
Opening Guide to the Holy Rosary
Opening Rosary Prayer 1: The Sign of the Cross.
Begin the Holy Rosary with the Sign of the Cross.
Sign of the Cross In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, amen.
Opening Rosary Prayer 2: The Apostles’ Creed
Holding on to the crucifix or beginning of the Rosary, pray the Apostles’ Creed.
The Apostles’ Creed I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; He descended into hell; on the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
Opening Rosary Prayer 3: The Our Father
On the first bead, pray an Our Father. It’s custom to pray this bead for the intentions of the Holy Father, the Pope.
Our Father Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
Opening Rosary Prayer 4: Hail Mary
On each of the next three beads, pray a Hail Mary. It is custom to pray each of these Hail Mary’s for Faith, Hope, and Love.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
Opening Rosary Prayer 5: The Glory Be
On the next bead, pray a Glory Be.
Glory Be Glory be to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
On your next large bead, you begin the decades of the Rosary. See a full guide and PDF on how to pray the Rosary.
Other Tips on Beginning a Rosary Prayer
- Take a moment to get in the right mindset before you begin to pray the Rosary. Taking a few minutes to breath slowly, to make your intention, and to get into a prayerful state can make your Rosary much more fruitful.
- Set up your space. Light a candle or put on some Gregorian Chant to set up your environment to help you focus.
- Use a guide to the Mysteries of the Rosary.
- Focus on the words. Saint Josemaria Escriva asks us to pray the Rosary slowly and simply. He encourages us to pronounce each Our Father and Hail Mary clearly and intentionally. In doing so, we will better express our love for Mary and Jesus. Remember, the Our Father was handed down to us from directly from Jesus and almost all of the Hail Mary is taken directly from Scripture. These words were not lightly chosen, they are significant and powerful.