How To: Pray the Chaplet of the 7 Sorrows of Mary

During my Mom & I’s recent completion of “33 Days to Morning Glory” and Our Marian Consecration, we prayed the Rosary of the 7 Sorrows for the first time. We were touched by the beauty of this powerful Marian devotion which has existed since Middle Ages, promoted by the Servite Order, and made better known by Our Lady of Kibeho during her apparitions in Rwanda. This devotion has been approved by the Catholic Church.

Father Leszek Czelusniak, MIC, interviewed Nathalie, one of the visionaries of Kibeho and asked her to summarize the messages of Mary. Here was Nathalie’s response:

“The Holy Virgin insisted on the need for prayer. She said that the world is bad. It is necessary to pray, to pray, to pray a lot for this world that is bad, to pray for sinners, to pray for their conversion. She insisted a lot on the need for conversion: Convert to God! Convert to God! Convert to God! While saying that people don’t respect God’s commands, that people have a hard heart, she also asked us to meditate on the mysteries of the Rosary and to recite it every day. She also taught us the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows. She asked us to pray it every Tuesday and Friday. She asked us to obey the Church, to love God in truth, and to love our neighbor in humility and simplicity. She spoke of the need for mortification, a spirit of penitence and sacrifice. She also spoke of the need for suffering, to bear our sufferings every day. She said that no one enters heaven without suffering. She also told us that acts of charity for the poor make us beautiful flowers that God likes. She wanted a chapel to be constructed here in Kibeho, so everyone would remember her visit and pray for the Church and religious. Holy Mary spoke to us in Kinyarwanda [the language of Rwanda] with her very soft voice.”

The variation of the Chaplet of the 7 Sorrows of Mary below is from the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception & is included in “33 Days to Morning Glory” by Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC. https://www.marian.org/mary/prayers/sorrows.php

For another variation on the Chaplet of the Seven Sorrows of Mary by Our Lady of Kibeho: overview & pictorial representation of the 7 Sorrows Rosary by Our Lady of Kibeho: https://www.immaculee.com/pages/7-sorrows-rosary-prayer

THE CHAPLET OF THE SEVEN SORROWS OF MARY– 7 Decade Chaplet

Though I use a regular 5 decade rosary that I modify, here are links to the Seven Sorrows Chaplet for purchase from EWTN Religious Catalogue & Leaflet Missal.

THE Chaplet OF THE SEVEN SORROWS OF MARY

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

Act of Contrition (Optional): 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.

1) THE FIRST SORROW- THE PROPHECY (LUKE 2:25-35)

The Prophecy of holy Simeon, who told Our Sorrowful Mother of the bitter passion and death of Jesus:

“Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Messiah of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: “Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in sight of all the peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel.” The child’s father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; 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.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

2. THE SECOND SORROW- THE FLIGHT (MATTHEW 2:13-15)

Our Sorrowful Mother is forces to Flee into Egypt to save her beloved Son from the death decreed by Herod:

“Now 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. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

3. THE THIRD SORROW- THE LOSS (LUKE 2:43-51)

Our Sorrowful Mother is separated from Jesus for three days when he remains in Jerusalem for three days without her knowing it:

“And when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, but supposing him to be in the company they went a day’s journey, and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintances; and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions; and all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. And when they saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been looking for you anxiously.” 49 And he said to them, “How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” And they did not understand the saying which he spoke to them.  And he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

4. THE FOURTH SORROW- The Meeting (LUKE 23:27-30)

Our Sorrowful Mother meets Jesus on the road to Calvary and sees him fall under the cruel weight of the cross:

“And there followed him a great multitude of the people, and of women who bewailed and lamented him. But Jesus turning to them said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.  For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never gave suck!’  Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us’; and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’  For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

5. THE FIFTH SORROW- Jesus Dies (JOHN 19:25-30)

Our Sorrowful Mother watches Jesus die on the Cross:

“So the soldiers did this. But standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Mag′dalene. When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, 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 to his own home. After this Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfil the scripture), “I thirst.” A bowl full of vinegar stood there; so they put a sponge full of the vinegar on hyssop and held it to his mouth.  When Jesus had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished”; and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

6. THE SIXTH Sorrow- Mary receives jesus (JOHN 19:31-37)

Our Sorrowful Mother receives the dead body of Jesus in her arms:

“Since it was the day of Preparation, in order to prevent the bodies from remaining on the cross on the sabbath (for that sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him;  but when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water.  He who saw it has borne witness—his testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth—that you also may believe.  For these things took place that the scripture might be fulfilled, “Not a bone of him shall be broken.” And again another scripture says, “They shall look on him whom they have pierced.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

7. The Seventh Sorrow- The Burial (mark 15:40-47)

Our Sorrowful Mother sees Jesus placed in the sacred tomb:

“And when evening had come, since it was the day of Preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath,  Joseph of Arimathe′a, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus.  And Pilate wondered if he were already dead; and summoning the centurion, he asked him whether he was already dead. And when he learned from the centurion that he was dead, he granted the body to Joseph.  And he bought a linen shroud, and taking him down, wrapped him in the linen shroud, and laid him in a tomb which had been hewn out of the rock; and he rolled a stone against the door of the tomb. Mary Mag′dalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid.”

(Pray 1 Our Father and 7 Hail Mary’s)

Concluding Prayer (x3)

Hail Mary Full of Grace, The Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death.

[Three Hail Mary’s are said in honor of the Tears if Our Sorrowful Mother]

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

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