Q: I have a six-year-old daughter in kindergarten who received a rosary today. Is there an
easy way to start teaching her how to pray the rosary? She currently knows the Our Father and the Hail Mary.
What a marvelous task to initiate the youngest to the mysteries of our
faith. I can see two important aspects to be conveyed over time. Start out
with using the beads. The child needs to touch, count and know what the
different beads mean. This should take some time at the end of which the
child would have acquired a loving and respectful familiarity with the
beads. Sometime along this apprenticeship you should introduce the real
meaning of the rosary by telling your daughter the story of our salvation
as expressed in the fifteen mysteries, as a simple story, without insisting on
individual mysteries. The best way to do this, is to "tell" the story so
that the child can vividly imagine one event. You can subsequently make it
an ongoing story, there you would each time dwell at some length on the
various episodes covered by the most important mysteries. During this time
the child would hold the beads, and even count them. Little by little you
then introduce the idea of praying for somebody, and relate this to the
mysteries. I hope this helps to develop a "plan of action."
In the event that more children are together, first tell the story (just
one scene, one mystery), then the children repeat it by acting it out.
When the "act" is over, pray just one decade. The child will then easily
associate the story and the meaning of the prayer decade recitation.
Allowing this to stretch out over several weeks, always in a reverent and
pleasant atmosphere, the child will remember the mystery of faith as a treasure never to be forgotten.
Rev. Johann G. Roten, S.M., Director
Academic Program, Library & Gallery, Research & Publication
Further information see:
Rosary Information Index
The Rosary Since Vatican II
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