On another forum the question was raised, and if it’s being asked there then it is probably of interest elsewhere: What does it take for a rosary to “count”? If you want to be able to honestly claim you prayed the rosary, what is the minimum that must be done?
My answer . . .
There are some very limited situations where it matters whether your rosary “counts”:
- If it is the penance assigned to you in Confession. If so, follow the instructions in a booklet or similar resource on how to pray the rosary; presumably the priest who assigned the penance has such a thing on hand or else confirmed in advance you knew how to pray the penance.
- You are committed to praying the rosary daily because of your affiliation with a religious order or apostolate, such as being an auxiliary member of the Legion of Mary. If so, follow the instructions set forth by the organization to which you belong.
- You’ve pledged to say a rosary on someone’s behalf, and you were quite specific it would be a rosary, not just prayers in general. If so, go with booklet instructions as above.
Otherwise: Doesn’t matter. It’s you and God spending time together loving one another. Think of it as going on a date . . . you wouldn’t spend your time wondering whether the date “counted”. I hope?
Over in the discussion group, a reader kindly reminds us that if you wish to receive a plenary indulgence for praying the rosary, there are instructions on that. Which you’ll want to keep straight.
Two nice links to go with the update:
- Catholic Answers walks you through the Rosary (back in the days when we only had three sets of mysteries).
- St. John Paul II walks you through the Rosary (more recently).