How to Pray: 7 Sorrows Rosary

The Rosary of the Seven Sorrows dates back to the Middle Ages, but it gained new popularity following the Marian apparitions in Kibeho, Rwanda in the 1980s. During Mary’s apparitions to Marie-Claire Mukangango, she assigned the young woman a mission to reintroduce this special Rosary to the world. Marie-Claire was killed in the genocide of over a million people in Rwanda.

See below for how to pray both the full version, and a shortened version.

Full Version

Begin: In the name of The Father, and The Son, and The Holy Spirit. Amen.

Pray: My God, I offer You this Rosary for Your glory, so I can honor your Holy Mother, the Blessed Virgin, so I can share and meditate upon her suffering. I humbly beg you to give me true repentance for all my sins. Give me wisdom and humility, so that I may receive all the indulgences contained in this prayer.

O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended You, and I detest all my sins because I dread the loss of Heaven and the pains of hell; but most of all because they offend You, my God, You Who are all good and deserving of all my love.  I firmly resolve, with the help of Your grace, to confess my sins, to do penance, and to amend my life. Amen.

Pray: 3 Hail Mary’s

Pray: Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus. 

The First Sword of Sorrow: The Prophecy of Simeon

And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted (and you yourself a sword will pierce) so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Lk 2:34-35).

Pray: Beloved Mother Mary, whose Heart suffered beyond bearing because of us, teach us to suffer with you and with love, and to accept all the suffering God deems it necessary to send our way. Let us suffer, and may our suffering be known to God only, like yours and that of Jesus. Do not let us show our suffering to the world, so it will matter more and be used to atone for the sins of the world. You, Mother, who suffered with the Savior of the world, we offer you our suffering, and the suffering of the world, because we are your children. Join those sorrows to your own and to those of the Lord Jesus Christ, then offer them to God the Father. You are a Mother greater than all.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Second Sword of Sorrow: The Flight Into Egypt

When they had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt (Matt 2:13-14).

Pray: Beloved Mother, who has suffered so much, give to us your courageous heart. Please pray for us to have strength so that we can be brave like you and accept with love the suffering God sends our way. Help us to also accept all the suffering we inflict upon ourselves and the suffering inflicted upon us by others. Heavenly Mother, you, in union with Jesus, purify our suffering so that we may give glory to God and save our souls.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Third Sword of Sorrow: The Loss of Jesus in the Temple

After they had completed its days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Thinking that he was in the caravan, they journeyed for a day and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances, but not finding him, they returned to Jerusalem to look for him (Luke 2:43-45).

Pray: Beloved Mother, teach us to accept all our sufferings because of our sins and to atone for the sins of the whole world.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Fourth Sword of Sorrow: Mary Meets Jesus on His Way to Calvary

A large crowd of people followed Jesus, including many women who mourned and lamented him. Jesus turned to them and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep instead for yourselves and for your children, for indeed, the days are coming when people will say, ‘Blessed are the barren, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed’ (Lk 23:27-29).

Pray: Beloved Mother, so stricken with grief, help us to bear our own suffering with courage and love so that we may relieve your Sorrowful Heart and that of Jesus. In doing so, may we give glory to God Who gave you and Jesus to humanity. As you suffered, teach us to suffer silently and patiently. Grant unto us the grace of loving God in everything. O Mother of Sorrows, most afflicted of all mothers, have mercy on the sinners of the whole world.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Fifth Sword of Sorrow: Mary Stands at the Foot of the Cross

Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home (John 19:25-27).

Pray: Beloved Mother, Queen of the Martyrs, give us the courage you had in all your sufferings so that we may unite our sufferings with yours and give glory to God. Help us follow all His commandments and those of the Church so that Our Lord’s sacrifice will not be in vain, and all sinners in the world will be saved.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Sixth Sword of Sorrow: Jesus is Taken Down From the Cross

So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and then of the other one who was crucified with Jesus. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs, but one soldier thrust his lance into his side, and immediately blood and water flowed out (Jn 19:32-34).

Pray: We thank you, Beloved Mother, for your courage as you stood beneath your dying Child to comfort Him on the Cross. As our Savior drew His last breath, you became a wonderful Mother to all of us; you became the Blessed Mother of the world. We know that you love us more than our own earthly parents do. We implore you to be our advocate before the Throne of Mercy and Grace so that we can truly become your children. We thank you for Jesus, our Savior and Redeemer, and we thank Jesus for giving you to us. Please pray for us, Mother.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

The Seventh Sword of Sorrow: The Burial of Jesus

Now in the place where he had been crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had yet been buried. So they laid Jesus there because of the Jewish preparation day; for the tomb was close by (John 19:41-42).

Pray: Most Beloved Mother, whose beauty surpasses that of all mothers, Mother of Mercy, Mother of Jesus, and Mother to us all, we are your children and we place all our trust in you. Teach us to see God in all things and all situations, even our sufferings. Help us to understand the importance of suffering, and also to know the purpose of our suffering as God had intended it.

You yourself were conceived and born without sin, were preserved from sin, yet you suffered more than anybody else. You accepted suffering and pain with love and with unsurpassed courage. You stood by your Son from the time He was arrested until He died. You suffered along with Him, felt His every pain and torment. You accomplished the Will of God the Father; and according to His will, you have become our Mother. 

We beg you, dear Mother, to teach us to do as Jesus did. Teach us to accept our cross courageously. We trust you, most Merciful Mother, so teach us to sacrifice for all the sinners in the world. Help us to follow in your Son’s footsteps, and even to be willing to lay down our lives for others.

Pray: 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s


Most Merciful Mother, remind us always about the Sorrows of your Son, Jesus.

Closing Prayer: Queen of Martyrs, your heart suffered so much. I beg you, by the merits of the tears you shed in these terrible and sorrowful times, to obtain for me and all the sinners of the world the grace of complete sincerity and repentance. Amen.

Mary, who was conceived without sin and who suffered for us, pray for us. (Pray 3x)

In the name of The Father, and The Son, and The Holy Spirit. Amen.

Short Version

Begin: In the name of The Father, and The Son, and The Holy Spirit. Amen.

O God, come to my assistance.

O Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

1 Hail Mary 

The First Sword of Sorrow: The Prophecy of Simeon

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the affliction of thy tender heart at the prophecy of the holy and aged Simeon. Dear Mother, by thy heart so afflicted, obtain for me the virtue of humility and the gift of the holy fear of God.

1 Hail Mary

The Second Sword of Sorrow: The Flight Into Egypt

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the anguish of thy most affectionate heart during the flight into Egypt and thy sojourn there. Dear Mother, by thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of generosity, especially toward the poor, and the gift of piety.

1 Hail Mary

The Third Sword of Sorrow: The Loss of Jesus in the Temple

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in those anxieties which tried thy troubled heart at the loss of thy dear Jesus. Dear Mother, by thy heart so full of anguish, obtain for me the virtue of chastity and the gift of knowledge.

1 Hail Mary

The Fourth Sword of Sorrow: Mary Meets Jesus on His Way to Calvary

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful in the consternation of thy heart at meeting Jesus as he carried His Cross. Dear Mother, by thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of patience and the gift of fortitude.

1 Hail Mary

The Fifth Sword of Sorrow: Mary Stands at the Foot of the Cross

I grieve for thee O Mary, most sorrowful, in the martyrdom which thy generous heart endured in standing near Jesus in His agony. Dear Mother, by thy afflicted heart, obtain for me the virtue of temperance and the gift of counsel.

1 Hail Mary

The Sixth Sword of Sorrow: Jesus is Taken Down From the Cross

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the wounding of thy compassionate heart, when the side of Jesus was struck by the lance and His Heart was pierced before His body was removed from the Cross. Dear Mother, by thy heart thus transfixed, obtain for me the virtue of fraternal charity and the gift of understanding.

1 Hail Mary

The Seventh Sword of Sorrow: The Burial of Jesus

I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, for the pangs that wrenched thy most loving heart at the burial of Jesus. Dear Mother, by thy heart sunk in the bitterness of desolation, obtain for me the virtue of diligence and the gift of wisdom.

1 Hail Mary

Pray for us, O Virgin most sorrowful, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray: Let intercession be made for us, we beseech Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the hour of our death, before the throne of Thy mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary, Thy Mother, whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow in the hour of Thy bitter Passion. Through Thee, Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, world without end. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The 7 Sorrows Rosary will be part of Hallow’s #Pray40 Lent community challenge, and then will remain on the app as a daily. We look forward to praying with you!