The Joyful Mysteries
First Joyful Mystery — The Annunciation Of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Meditation: Imagine the feelings of Mary as a beautiful, young, sinless teen. She has just encountered an archangel and has been told that she is to become the Mother of the Most High. She is the fulfillment of the prophecy in Genesis 3:15. This news is too much for her to grasp and she has to be reassured by the Archangel Gabriel. “The Holy Spirit will come upon you.” She is engaged to Joseph and is still a virgin. Will he believe her? Will anyone believe her? What are her feelings as she surrenders to the will of God? How did you feel, Mary?
Second Joyful Mystery — The Visitation to Her Cousin Elizabeth
Meditation: The heat is unbearable as Mary travels over the parched hills to her cousin Elizabeth. What is motivating her to make this exhausting journey during her pregnancy? Is it just because she is concerned about the age of her elderly cousin giving birth at her late age? What is she feeling as she proceeds on her journey into the hillside? Try to imagine it. How did you feel, Mary?
Third Joyful Mystery — The Birth of Our Lord Jesus Christ
Meditation: Bethlehem is so crowded with those coming to town for the census that there is no room anywhere. Joseph is anxious as the time of Mary’s delivery approaches. He must find a secluded place and the only place available is a damp, smelly cave where sheep and animals find shelter. Mary prostrates on the straw bed provided by Joseph’s loving hands and she gives birth to the King of Kings. Not a fitting place for one so exulted. How did you feel, Mary?
Fourth Joyful Mystery — The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple
Meditation: It is a joyful day when Mary and Joseph take Baby Jesus to the temple to present Him according to the Jewish Law. Holy Simeon, a prophet, takes Him into his hands and offers praise and thanksgiving. He has seen his salvation. Mary and Joseph are filled with joy, but not for long. He looks into the eyes of Mary and says, “This child is set for the rise and fall of many, but you, a sword of sorrow shall pierce your heart.” The pain begins. How did you feel, Mary?
Fifth Joyful Mystery — The Finding of Jesus in the Temple
Meditation: For three days they search endlessly for the child Jesus. Where can He be? Mary and Joseph are emotionally drained. Will they ever see Him again? Where can He be? They find Him in the temple, teaching the teachers. Mary says, “Why have You done this to us? Did You not know that Your father and I sought You in sorrow?” “Woman, why did you search for Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?,” Jesus replies. Mary ponders this within her heart. The pain and the stress pierce her heart. What does it mean? What is he trying to tell her? How did you feel, Mary?
The Luminous Mysteries
First Luminous Mystery — The Baptism of Our Lord
Meditation: Imagine you are present at the river Jordan listening to the preaching of John the Baptist. All eyes and ears are centered on the person of this unusual man, when suddenly Jesus appears in the midst of the crowd. Now all eyes are focused on Him as you hear John say those special words of greeting, “Behold the Lamb of God, behold Him who takes away the sins of the world.” What does it mean? You are further startled when Jesus steps into the water to be baptized by John and the sky opens and the voice of the Father says, “This is my beloved Son.” Concentrate on this scene and notice what you feel as you proceed to pray this decade. What do you feel?
Second Luminous Mystery — The Marriage Feast of Cana
Meditation: You are a guest at the wedding and it is very crowded with joyful people celebrating. The wine has run out and you watch and listen as the Blessed Mother speaks with her Son, “Son, they have no wine.” He seems to rebuke her by saying it is not His or her problem, but she goes to the headwaiter and speaks with him, “Do whatever He tells you.” These are the last recorded words of Mary in the Bible. They will be the last words that she says to you when you go to her for help too. Meditate on this mystery and be aware of what you feel as you watch His first miracle. What do you feel?
Third Luminous Mystery — The Proclamation of the Kingdom
Meditation: Imagine this to be your very first encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ. You hear His words and become aware of your sinfulness. “Repent. The Kingdom of God is at hand.” As you look into the eyes of Jesus, what do you feel as you meditate on this mystery and realize your need to change your life style and your values? What do you feel?
Fourth Luminous Mystery — The Transfiguration
Meditation: During this mystery, walk with Him up the mountain and pray with Him as He prays. Suddenly He is transfigured. His clothes are dazzling white and His face shines like the sun. Again the voice of the Father from heaven, “This is my beloved Son.” Try to imagine what you would feel if you were present for this manifestation. See the transfigured Christ before your eyes and hear the voice of the Father. What do you feel?
Fifth Luminous Mystery — The Institution of the Eucharist
Meditation: Now you are an honored guest at this last meal with Jesus. It is no ordinary meal. He takes bread and wine and says those awesome words: “This is My Body. This is My Blood.” What do you feel as He hands it to you to take? What do you feel as you eat and drink for the first time? Think about it deeply. What do you feel?
The Sorrowful Mysteries
First Sorrowful Mystery — The Agony in the Garden
Meditation: The moonlight casts a shadow of Jesus on the ground as He kneels beside the old olive tree. His face is taut and blood trickles down His cheeks and neck. There is an eerie silence only disturbed by the snoring of three disciples, which comes from the area of an adjacent bush. They struggled to keep watch but were unable to stay awake. Jesus comes to them and asks, “Can you not watch one hour with Me?” He returns to His former place by the olive tree and continues His prayer and asks to be delivered. “Not My Will but Yours be done.” The guards arrive and watch as Judas betrays Him with a kiss. He is arrested and taken away to be condemned. How did it feel, Jesus?
Second Sorrowful Mystery — The Scourging at the Pillar
Meditation: Pontius Pilate hands Jesus over to the brutal hands of the Roman soldiers who tie Him to a post to be scourged with thongs of leather to which have been attached pieces of sharp metal. Whoosh! Whoosh! Whoosh! The whip tears into His sacred flesh and leaves bloody gashes where the metal hit; 39 lashes from this whip of three thongs. He is a bloody mess and there is not a single piece of flesh left unmarked. How did it feel, Jesus?
Third Sorrowful Mystery — The Crowning with Thorns
Meditation: The sadism of the soldiers is intensified as they weave a crown of sharp, needle-like thorns to place upon His head in mockery of His kingship. They blasphemously genuflect before Him. “Hail King of the Jews.” This is the first of many such mockeries that He will receive. How many others will do the same in His presence when genuflecting merely out of habit rather than devotion? How did it feel, Jesus?
Fourth Sorrowful Mystery — The Carrying of the Cross
Meditation: The heavy beam of wood is placed upon His lacerated shoulder and thus begins His painful walk to Calvary. His face is covered with blood and His body is a hideous mess. Blood fills His eyes as He struggles to see. The mocking crowd jeers as He passes by, only interrupted by the weeping of several women. He falls under the weight of the wood and His face hits the hard surface of the ground. As He looks up His eyes meet the eyes of His sorrowful Mother. How did it feel, Jesus?
Fifth Sorrowful Mystery — The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus
Meditation: Jesus is stretched out on the cross and large nails pierce His hands and feet. He is hoisted up. The pain is excruciating. He thirsts. He can’t breathe. The crowd mocks, but He forgives. He gives His Mother to the Church. He suffers and then He dies. They pierce His heart with a sword, but He no longer feels.
The Glorious Mysteries
First Glorious Mystery — The Resurrection of Jesus from the Tomb
Meditation: On that first Easter Sunday, the tomb is empty. The cloths that bound Him lay there undisturbed. The women run to the disciples with the news. He appears to them, but Thomas is not there. He doesn’t believe without proof. Jesus shows His hands and side as proof of His resurrection. Thomas adores Him. “My Lord and My God.” Each of them, except for John, will eventually die a painful death because of this belief. Meditate on this mystery and try to feel what they felt. How did the early Christians feel?
Second Glorious Mystery — The Ascension of Our Lord into Heaven
Meditation: Jesus is about to leave them to go back to His Father. They wish to know when He is coming back. “It is not for you to know this. That day only the Father knows.” They are to wait for the coming of the Holy Spirit. He ascends into heaven. He has gone. How did the early Christians feel?
Third Glorious Mystery — The Coming of the Holy Spirit upon Them
Meditation: The apostles gather in the upper room with Mary the Mother of Jesus. Together they make the first novena in preparation for the birth of the Church. Suddenly there is a mighty wind and tongues of fire appear above them. They are filled with the Holy Spirit. Courageously they leave the upper room and preach with power. Hundreds are baptized and the Church is born. How did the early Christians feel?
Fourth Glorious Mystery — Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into Heaven
Meditation: It is a sad day for the early Christians when the Blessed Mother is taken from them, but what a happy day in heaven! Mary enters into heaven and is reunited with her Son. Mary is no longer physically present to the early Christians, but her spiritual presence is very powerful now. Now she can intercede for all and be a Mediatrix of grace in heaven. How did the early Christians feel?
Fifth Glorious Mystery — The Coronation of Our Lady in Heaven
Meditation: What a glorious mystery this is! Think of the happiest day of your life; nothing compared to the happiness you will have. Think of the greatest sights you have ever seen; nothing compared to the sights you will see. Think of the greatest sounds you have ever heard; nothing compared to what you will hear. Think of the greatest love that you have ever felt; nothing compared to what you will feel. It is into this heaven that Mary has now entered for her coronation as Queen. She is the woman in Scripture, with the sun and the moon under her feet and a crown of 12 stars upon her head (Rev. 12). She now reigns forever with her Son, the King of Kings. The early Christians look forward to the day when they can join them. How did the early Christians feel? Are you as excited about it as they were?