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What Does Your Rosary Say About You?

July 10, 2012

I must admit.  I am a sacramental geek.  I love to read about, collect, and use all types of sacramentals.  Of course there are many types of sacrimentals that one might hold a personal devotion to.  I am a member of The Association of the Miraculous Medal, so I wear a miraculous medal daily. I have also been enrolled in the  Fivefold Scapular so this is also worn around my neck daily.  Again, around my neck I wear a St. Benedict Jubilee Medal that received a very long blessing in the extraordinary form  by a Benedictine Priest.  However today I’d like to focus on what may be the most common and customizable sacramental, the rosary.

Your rosary can say a lot about you.  The rosary can be customized by the type and color of bead, twine or chain, and finally the centerpiece and crucifix.  If you are like most Catholics you probably have several rosary’s that you have acquired throughout your life.  I can say that I don’t usually buy rosary’s, only have ones that I am given on special occasions.  I am missing two rosary’s from my lifetime collection, one my first communion rosary, and the other a rosary my mother got me from a trip to New Orleans.   All in all I have a small collection containing nine rosary’s that I have collected, mostly from special occasions, throughout my twenty-six years.

Oddly enough the rosary that I carry daily is one that I customized, the only rosary that I purchased for myself.  What does this say?  As I was praying the other day I realized that I use this rosary most often because it is customized to my personal devotional life.  It is a bundle of sacramental that I have personal devotion to.

My most often used rosary. Large black olive wood beads with Pardon Crucifix and Miraculous Medal Center. There is also a St. Benedict Jubilee Medal attached to the first decant.

I refer to this as my “powerhouse rosary” because of the combination of powerfully indulged sacramentals that have much power over evil.   As you can see in the picture, my rosary has a St. Benedict Jubilee medal attached.  The St. Benedict Medal is included because of my personal devotion which springs from the experience of attending a Benedictine run parish while in grad school (the time of my “conversion” from “not so good Catholic” to “attempting to be a good Catholic”).  The crucifix on the rosary is a Pardon Crucifix.  I included this sacramental because at the time I was harboring a lot of resentment for a woman whom I was involved with who could not accept my Catholic faith.  Finally the centerpiece of this rosary is a Miraculous Medal.  This medal was given to  St. Catherine Labouré by Our Lady, it is historically a highly indulged and powerful sacramental.

I own other rosary’s.  I particularly like one that my aunt (a sister of the School Sister of Notre Dame) gave me for confirmation with its natural colored wooden beads beautiful crucifix, and personal meaning.  I also occasionally use the rosary that I received upon completing my first degree in the Knights of Columbus.

Knights of Columbus Rosary with Bl. John Paul the Great style crucifix.

A small rosary using cord instead of chain. The rosary I used through grad school.

A St. Benedict rosary with St. Benedict Crucifix and St. Benedict Jubilee Medal centerpiece. I won this beautiful rosary in a raffle at the 2011 St. Louis Eucharist Congress.

Of course praying the rosary is about asking for Our Lady’s prayers, but it is still possible to work our personal devotions into this prayer.  I end the rosary with the short prayer involving the Pardon Crucifix “: “Our father who art in heaven, forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us” followed by kissing the crucifix, and the prayer to St. Michael.

So what is your style.  How does your rosary say who you are?  What way do you work your personal devotions into your rosary?

From → Everyday Faith

  1. You have some beautiful Rosaries. I have several, as well. Each of them is dear to me.

  2. I agree that a rosary can reflect personal styles and devotion. I carry a rosary with an image of Padre Pio because I know someone who was cured by his intervention and because I often visit the National Centre for Padre Pio in Barto, Pennsylvania. In addition to purchasing rosaries with special center medals, I believe it is also appropriate to add significant medals to a rosary. For example, I visited the World Meeting of Families in 2015 and added a medal commemorating that event to my rosary.
    I wrote about rosary styles in my book, The Rosary Collector’s Guide.

  3. Hi,

    Could you tell me how I may get hold of the same rosary beads as you have got (large black olive wood beads with pardon crucifix, miraculous medals centerpiece, and St Benedict medal)? I am interested in something like this myself. Is there an online shop I can get this and is it expensive? I live in the UK but I imagine it is sold in the US?

    Many thanks,

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