Correct Way to Hold Catholic Rosary Beads

Rosary beads, which are similar to prayer beads in non-Christian religions, are a string of beads attached to a crucifix and used in prayers, also called rosaries and meditation. In the Catholic religion, there is a correct way to hold each bead on the rosary while you are praying or meditating.

Hold the crucifix of the rosary beads in either hand. Touch your forehead in the name of the Father, touch your heart in the name of the Son and touch your left shoulder in the name of the Holy Spirit. Arrange the rosary beads to the left of the crucifix and over your fingers. Be certain the crucifix is facing upright. Allow the rest of the beads to follow in between your fingers in a circular shape.

Proceed down to the first bead and hold it in either hand. Say the "Our Father" while holding the bead.

Proceed down to the next three beads. Hold all three beads in either hand and say the "Hail Mary." Move your hand or fingers to the third bead only after you have finished the "Hail Mary." Say the "Glory Be" while holding the third bead.

Proceed to the next bead and announce the "First Mystery" or the "Our Father." Proceed clockwise around the rosary and say the "Hail Mary" again on the next ten beads.

Continue to the next bead, announce the "Mystery" and say the "Our Father." Repeat all of the above steps until you have went completely around the rosary. End with a prayer.


Rosary beads are often associated with the traditional Roman Catholic practice, but rosaries are also used in several religions such as Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam.

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