Some form of rosary has been around since the 12th century. Praying the rosary in the early church was different than today. There were 150 beads or knots in a rope that they used to pray on. The monks prayed 150 Psalms a day. Since many of the laity and even lay monastic could not read, they substituted 150 repetitions of the Our Father for the Psalms.
The basic structure of the rosary as we know it today stems from the 14th century.
In 1569, Pope Pius V officially established the devotion to the rosary in the Catholic Church. From the 16th to the early 20th century, the structure of the rosary remained essentially unchanged. There were 15 mysteries, one for each of the 15 decades. In the 20th century the addition of the Fatima Prayer to the end of each decade became popular. There were no other changes until 2002 when Pope St. John Paul II instituted five new Luminous Mysteries.
St. Louis De Montfort states (in The Secret of the Rosary, p. 65):
The Rosary recited with meditation on the mysteries brings about the following marvelous results:
1. It gradually gives us a perfect knowledge of Jesus Christ;
2. It purifies our souls, washing away sin;
3. It gives us victory over all our enemies;
4. It makes it easy for us to practice virtue;
5. It sets us on fire with love of Our Blessed Lord;
6. It enriches us with graces and merits;
7. It supplies us with what is needed to pay all our debts to God and to our fellow men, and finally, it obtains all kinds of graces for us from Almighty God.
The rosary, when prayed, takes only 15 to 20 minutes out of your day. At Fatima, Our Lady requested that we pray one rosary of five decades every day.
We will be starting up the Tuesday Rosary Club again on June 9. It will be at Our Lady of the Lake Church after 8 am Mass (around 8:45am) and streamed online from the parish website. Please join us for some blessings.