A young family praying the rosary together. The family may be big or small…….babies, little kids, or big kids! “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20). Our Lord is there and Mary too during the Family Rosary. It will solidify your family if done frequently.
DAD, LEAD YOUR FAMILY IN THE ROSARY OFTEN IF NOT DAILY
The first motivation of Blessed Fr. Michael McGivney in founding the fraternal organization, the Knights of Columbus was the spiritual and material welfare of the members’ families especially in cases where they would lose their fathers to a fatal accident on the job and the state would take over the care of indigent children. Their life insurance program has been a great help over the years.
Today the Knights of Columbus still promotes strong families and thus is encouraging its members to make their homes domestic churches where Christ is the center of the family. There’s no set formula, but there are basic principles. Each family is unique; yet there are different ways to make your home a domestic church…….each family in its own way.
Carl Anderson, the previous Supreme Knight stated: “OUR MISSION IS TO BUILD THE DOMESTIC CHURCH AND STRENGTHEN PARISH LIFE (see http://www.kofc.org/en/columbia/supreme_knight/fromthesk_20150112.html and https://www.kofc.org/en/who-we-are/our-faith/domestic-church.html. Their “Building the Domestic Church” kiosk with a variety of booklets can be very helpful to build your domestic church. It’s in the vestibule of many churches. See https://www.kofc.org/en/what-we-do/faith-in-action-programs/faith/building-domestic-church-kiosk.html.
One tremendous help toward making your home a domestic church is gathering your family together to pray the rosary as often as possible, ideally on a daily basis, perhaps right after supper or at bedtime.
There are families in our small parish (St. Louis Church Gallipolis, Ohio) who do……..Tim & Chrissy Stapleton, DJ & Kara Stapleton, Scott & Bernadette Lewis, and perhaps others. Noteworthy is that these three families are the grandchildren of James and Harriet Davison who prayed the Rosary with their twelve children……what a beautiful legacy they left for all of us to follow! See www.familyrosary.org. In addition our parish family prays the Rosary before all the Masses on the first Saturday and first Sunday of each month as well as before the four times a year Fifth Sunday Knights of Columbus Mass in regalia.
The family rosary with six kids and Grandma too. Notice in the background the image of Our Lady of Fatima appearing to the three shepherd children, asking for repentance, offering our crosses for the conversion of sinners, and praying the rosary daily for peace.
October is the Month of the Holy Rosary; October 7 is the Feast of “Our Lady of the Rosary” and this coming October 13 is the anniversary of the great “Miracle of the Sun” at Fatima in 1917. Let us use this month to at least give the family rosary a try. Although it’s easier to start when the kids are very small, any family can do it. Once the kids are accustomed to the daily Rosary, it becomes a daily routine and disruptions will be minimal. Every knight should have the Knights of Columbus rosary which is given to every newly inducted knight upon receiving the First Degree. Any knight may obtain a replacement by going to
Praying the Rosary is simple; yet deep and Biblical……enhancing virtue, a source of grace and strength. It’s not simply repetitive prayer. That’s really like rhythmic background music for the essence of the Rosary…….meditation on key events in the life of Christ and His mother who had such an intimate part in His mission of salvation for us all if we only follow the Lord. See Deacon Keith Fournier explain it at
In the first photo above, each child is holding a rosary, which is shown here to keep track of the prayers. If you don’t have one, ask your pastor or obtain a free rosary at www.maryqueenusa.org, which also explains how to say the rosary with the prayers spelled out. The crucifix symbolizes the “Apostles Creed”. It is followed by an “Our Father” prayer for the intentions of the Holy Father, three Hail Mary prayers for the increase of faith, hope, & Charity, and a “Glory Be” prayer.
The Joyful Mysteries (Usually Monday & Saturday): 1. The Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38); 2. The Visitation (Luke 1:39-56); 3. The Nativity (Luke 2:1-20); 4. The Presentation of the Christ Child in the Temple (Luke 2:21-40); 5. The Finding of the Christ Child in the Temple (Luke 2:41-52).
The Luminous Mysteries (Usually Thursday) : 1. The Baptism of Christ By John the Baptist (Matthew 3:1-17); 2. The Wedding at Cana (John 2:1-11); 3. The Proclamation of the Kingdom (Mark 1:14-15); 4. The Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-13); 5. The Institution of the Eucharist (Luke 22:14-20).
The Sorrowful Mysteries (Usually Tuesday & Friday): 1. The Agony in the Garden (Luke 22:39-53); 2. The Scourging at the Pilar (Mark 15:1-15); 3. The Crowning of Thorns (Mark 15:16-20); 4. The Carrying of the Cross (Luke 23:26-28); 5. The Crucifixion (John 17-42).
The Glorious Mysteries (Usually Sunday & Wednesday): 1. The Resurrection (John 19:38-21:25); 2. The Ascension (Matthew 28:16-20); 3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4-5; 2:1-41); 4. The Assumption of Mary into Heaven (Revelation 11:19; 12:1); 5. The Coronation of Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth (Revelation 12:1).
Meditating on the Mysteries. The parents can tell the story of each mystery at story time or simply read them the relevant selection from a children’s Bible. During the recitation of the Rosary the father can introduce each mystery with a brief story, meditation, or lesson to be learned. Once the children know the Bible stories and are older, they can meditate on their own.
Tell the kids to play back in their minds the story behind each mystery and to try to think about its meaning as to why it is important. Ask the children to imagine that they are there when each event or mystery occurred.
EWTN has Rosary with images of each mystery four times a day at 7:30 am, 11:30 am, 3:30 pm, and 9:30 pm Eastern Time. Available are booklets, pamphlets, and DVDs of the Rosary for each set of mysteries with images (go to afc.org or call 1-800-FORMARY). At http://paulrsebastianphd.blogspot.com (this site) there is an article on each set of mysteries at Blog Numbers 50, 73, 78, and 84. The Appendix below has links to written meditations and video recited rosaries with meditations.
Options. Some families have the kids take turns announcing and leading the prayers of each mystery. Mischief and boredom can be a problem at times. Parents should try to make it as interesting as possible with some variety. The Rosary should not last more than 20 minutes.
When the weather is good, the family can take a Rosary Walk. In this way they get some exercise at the same time. When on an outing, the family can pray the Rosary in the car. The Rosary can be after supper and if everybody behaves, they can be rewarded with cake and/or ice cream.
Be careful in using excessive force or letting the Rosary drag out. Then the kids might resent the Rosary and even hate it. Brother knight Bruce Davison made it optional for his older kids. “More often than not, when a kid skips the Rosary and goes to his/her room, s/he feels guilty and joins the family later or the next day.”
The group www.americaneedsfatima.org has put out tips on saying the Family Rosary at https://americaneedsfatima.org/blog/family-tip-praying-the-family-rosary.
In the 1940s, 50s, and 60s the Venerable Fr. Patrick Peyton (1909-1992) (see www.fatherpeyton.org for his life story) promoted the Family Rosary with rallies (Family Crusades) all over the world, including 1.5 million in Rio de Janiero. Often he would fill up stadiums.
Fr. Peyton before 1.5 million people in Rio
The Rosary Priest recruited numerous movie stars of the silver screen to volunteer to act and participate in his Family Theater on 460 radio stations, videos, and special television programs over a period of 22 years. You can see reruns of Family Theater radio episodes on Sunday evenings at 11:30 pm at https://www.ewtn.com/radio/listen-live and its affiliated diocesan radio stations such as St. Gabriel Radio in Columbus, Ohio at 820 AM and 88.3 FM. The best writers and musicians also volunteered. Among the most prominent stars are Bing Crosby, Loretta Young, Jimmy Stewart, Jack Benny, Lucille Ball, Don Ameche, Rosalind Russel, Ann Blyth, Ethel Barrymore, Kirk Douglas, Frank Sinatra, James Dean, and Bob Hope. Fr. Peyton with two big Hollywood stars of the day…….Jack Benny and Lucille Ball. He even put on a "Fiesta of the Stars" for Family Theater. Many Hollywood stars came and Fr. Peyton ended the fiesta with a Rosary. Crash the party at www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPHUj9F4UFg&ab_channel=FamilyTheaterProductions.
He constantly repeated the themes, “The Family that prays together stays together”; “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of”; “A world at prayer is a world at peace”. You can see more of Fr. Peyton, his life, rallies, homilies, etc. on the internet and www.youtube.com.
One of Fr. Peyton’s Rosary Rallies
· Pray the enacted Joyful Mysteries with Fr. Peyton at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkE8fuk1rHs&ab_channel=FamilyRosary.
· Pray the enacted Luminous Mysteries with the Rosary Priest at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgeZdrDu84U&ab_channel=FamilyRosary.
· Pray the enacted Sorrowful Mysteries with him at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngqZ0Vwn-Eg&ab_channel=FamilyRosary.
· Pray the enacted glorious mysteries with the future saint at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2SnQhWhcJc&ab_channel=FamilyRosary.
See the video of one of his rosary rallies at www.hcfm.org, his story and message at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3uC-smrLdA&ab_channel=ShalomWorld, and a conversation with St. Mother Teresa regarding the Rosary on the Family Theater at
Fr. Peyton and two Hollywood Movie Stars Bobby Driscoll and Rita Johnson on the air waves doing a live Family Theater radio program in the 1940s on the Mutual Radio Network beamed all over the United States. In the 1960s he expanded into television.
St. Pope John Paul II (1920-2005) had a Rosary with him at all times and prayed the Rosary every day, taking advantage of car rides or pauses between meetings. Imagine the depth of his meditations with his extensive and deep knowledge of Theology and Scripture! Pope Leo XIII (1810-1903) wrote twelve different encyclicals on the Rosary. St. Pope John Paul II wrote the Apostolic Letter, “ROSARIUM VIRGINIS MARIAE on the Most Holy Rosary” and declared October 2002 to October 2003 as the Year of the Rosary. You can read it by going to https://rosaryea.org/apostolic-letter-from-pope-john-paul-ii. St. Padre Pio called the rosary his weapon against evil.
One saint and a future saint. St. Pope John Paul embraces the Venerable Fr Patrick Peyton in the 1980s. "How beautiful is the family that recites the Rosary every evening." — Pope John Paul II
Many other popes have promoted the Rosary:
"Among all the devotions approved by the Church, none has been so favored by so many miracles as the Rosary devotion." — Pope Pius IX
"Give me an army saying the Rosary and I will conquer the world." — Pope Pius IX
"The Rosary is the most beautiful and the most rich in graces of all prayers; it is the prayer that touches most the Heart of the Mother of God…and if you wish peace to reign in your homes, recite the family Rosary." — Pope Saint Pius X
"Let not even one day pass without saying it, no matter how burdened you may be with many cares and labors." — Pope Pius XI
"If you desire peace in your hearts, in your homes, and in your country, assemble each evening to recite the Rosary." — Pope Pius XI
"There is no surer means of calling down God's blessings upon the family... than the daily recitation of the Rosary." — Pope Pius XII
"Dear young people, I invite you to value this traditional Marian prayer which helps us to understand better the central moments of salvation realized by Christ." — Pope Benedict XVI
During this month of the Holy Rosary, give the Family Rosary a try in your home. The rest of the year you could make it a daily routine or simply keep it to October, Advent, Lent, and/or May, the month of Mary. In any event make the Rosary a frequent family activity and the probability of your kids being faithful life-long Catholics will greatly increase as they pass on the faith to the next generation……your grandchildren.
Praying the Rosary (Videos)
Joyful Mysteries (Mondays & Saturdays)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUz0uebgqqQ - Holy Land Rosary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkE8fuk1rHs – The Joyful Mysteries with Fr. Patrick Peyton.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4W8BP5yG0kM&list=PLZgMJFNAj-FRMWbQAuuVgBJq7NYW9c06- Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary with Fr. Groeshel.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NLmmwhb9Xg – The Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary – Scriptural.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvAtvR9NtQk - “The Flame of Love Rosary”: The Joyful Mysteries
Sorrowful Mysteries (Tuesdays & Fridays)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3Z3Sfp_0bA –Holy Land Rosary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngqZ0Vwn-Eg – the Sorrowful Mysteries with Fr. Patrick Peyton.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOjruAoZ0ec – the Sorrowful Mysteries with Fr. Groeshel
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWvF61yaPwk - Our Lady of Fatima Meditative Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary
Luminous Mysteries (in full) (Thursdays)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRuPXtyq-r8 - The Rosary Luminous Mysteries: With Music
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6e3fkgLT30c - Luminous Mysteries - Fr. Kevin Scallon & Dana Rosemary Scallon
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8KtJ7pEHseY – LUMINOUS MYSTERIES (Thursday)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXcr7YYL12o – Virtual Luminous Mysteries
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0PV53kLPbc – Holy Land Rosary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgeZdrDu84U – the Luminous Mysteries with Fr. Patrick Peyton.
https://gloria.tv/post/gQ1vjW6N8QcZ1ekAohZEv6rML - The Luminous Mysteries with Fr. Groeshel
Glorious Mysteries (Sundays & Wednesdays)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=75x1ulliptU – Holy Land Rosary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_doGOMH2RMo– Glorious Mysteries with Fr. Patrick Peyton.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2SnQhWhcJc – Glorious Mysteries with Fr. Patrick Peyton (Newer Version)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TwhOXN2KtEg&list=PLWiasCXS3ZntVGKEj_YAulxY5mQ16_d5A – Glorious Mysteries Fr. Groeshel
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OouX72ADvSA – Glorious Mysteries
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l3pSrH_xEs – Glorious Mysteries
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZOnVtpjhds - Mother Teresa Prays the Rosary for life in Knock Shrine - Glorious
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYVdCWoAvEc – The Rosary led by St. Pope John Paul II.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMB1zxZBRnA – Another Rosary led by St. Pope John Paul II.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1ccTslpo0I - 8:16 A Conversation between Father Patrick Peyton, C.S.C., and Saint Mother Teresa, M.C.
www.familyrosary.org – Fr. Patrick Peyton’s Family Rosary Crusade
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RCW36MwGl_c - 21:12 The Miracle Hidden in Your Rosary
Written Rosary Meditations and Articles