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The Rosary as Blessing

By: Tina Mayeux on May 11th, 2024

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The Rosary as Blessing

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“All good giving and every perfect gift is from above.” (James 1:17) 

We receive countless gifts from God in our lives, from food, clothing, and shelter, to the graces He gives us each day. When we are counting our blessings, do we remember to return blessing and adoration to God?  

The prayer of blessing and adoration is one of the five forms of prayer designated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (blessing, petition, intercession, thanksgiving, and praise) — the form in which we worship God or invoke His grace.   

“Blessing expresses the basic movement of Christian prayer: it is an encounter between God and man. In blessing, God's gift and man's acceptance of it are united in dialogue with each other.” (CCC 2626)  

The Catechism describes the prayer of blessing as an “encounter” between God and man. What is an encounter? The dictionary definition of the word is a meeting or experience with another person. As in a visit with a good friend, an encounter is an exchange, a back-and-forth between two people. In the Rosary, we engage in an encounter with Christ and our Blessed Mother, especially through the prayerful recitation of the Our Father and the Hail Mary. As our fingers move over the Rosary beads and our lips recite the words of these prayers, we listen and respond to Jesus and Our Lady. 


Secret of the Rosary


The supreme encounter between God and man is the Incarnation, which is a marriage between divinity and humanity. Mary’s womb was beautifully referred to as “a bridal chamber” in the early Church. Father Frank Sofie states, “Since the Incarnation is THE encounter with God and man in a preeminent manner, then the Rosary, insofar as it brings us into this mystery through meditation, participates in the prayer of blessing, into this encounter. 

The Rosary is made up not only of vocal, but also mental prayer, which brings us into this mystery, according to St. Louis de Montfort in The Secret of the Rosary. St. Teresa of Avila, the great Carmelite reformer, and Doctor of the Church, wrote extensively on mental prayer, famously defining it as “Nothing else but an intimate sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with Him who we know loves us.” She also said that in prayer the important thing is “Not to think much but to love much.”

In St. Teresa’s commentary on the Our Father, she reminds us to think about the “encounter” with Christ when praying the Lord’s Prayer. When we pray the Rosary, we are placing ourselves in an encounter with Jesus through meditating on the events of His life and the life of His Blessed Mother. We listen and respond to Him in this “intimate sharing between friends” and express our love for Him while allowing Him to love us. It is not a mindless recitation of a series of prayers. It is, rather, a deeply contemplative prayer, with its goal being worship, or “blessing,” and union with God. 


2024 May_Rosary Blessing (Instagram Post)

The Catechism also states that the prayer of blessing is our response to the blessing God bestows:  

The prayer of blessing is man's response to God's gifts: because God blesses, the human heart can in return bless the One who is the source of every blessing.” (CCC 2626)  


Ponder in Your Heart


Our prayerful and heartfelt recitation of the Holy Rosary can be a reciprocal offering to Jesus and Mary for the gifts and blessings they bestow upon us. Fr. Sofie says, “In the Rosary we contemplate the definitive blessing of God made man, and through the Rosary we return this blessing by pondering in our hearts.”  

St. Luke’s Gospel describes Our Lady’s response to the events taking place surrounding her Son Jesus: “And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). Like Mary, we keep the mysteries of the Rosary in our hearts and reflect upon them. We ponder the mysteries so that we can offer blessing and adoration to God and be transformed and made into the image of Christ who became one with us.  

About Tina Mayeux

Tina Mayeux is a wife, mother of three daughters, and lifetime Southerner. When she is not busy with her family, she writes in hopes of helping to share the joy of the gospel and Jesus Christ with others. She has contributed to Catholic Digest, Patheos, and The Real Deal of Parenting, and blogs on Substack. Follow her on Instagram @wayofthewildflowers.