World Mission Rosary

In February of 1951, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen (national director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith from 1950 to 1966), in a radio address (The Catholic Hour), inaugurated a World Mission Rosary. “We must pray, and not for ourselves, but for the world. To this end, I have designed the World Mission Rosary. Each of the five decades is of a different color to represent the continents.”

Praying this Rosary, Archbishop Sheen said, would “aid the Holy Father and His Society for the Propagation of the Faith by supplying Him with practical support, as well as prayers, for the poor mission territories of the world.”

What do the colors signify?

Each decade of that World Mission Rosary calls to mind an area where the Church continues her evangelizing mission: GREEN for the forests and grasslands of AFRICA; BLUE for the ocean surrounding the ISLANDS OF THE PACIFIC; WHITE symbolizing EUROPE, the seat of the Holy Father, shepherd of the world; RED calling to mind the fire of faith that brought missionaries to the AMERICAS, and YELLOW, the morning light of the East, for ASIA.

“The Rosary is a prayer that always accompanies me; it is also the prayer of the ordinary people and the saints…it is a prayer from my heart.” –Our Holy Father, Pope Francis

For further resources:  

Our Missionary Childhood Association has created a brochure with information and prayers, and mysteries with missionary reflections that will help children of all ages learn more about the World Mission Rosary.
(*Adobe Acrobat recommended. click on image to view and download PDF)

World Mission Rosary Pamphlet (English)

World Mission Rosary Pamphlet (Spanish)

Ideas to pray the World Mission Rosary: 

  • A Novena

Image of the Virgin Mary at a Novena at Christ the King Parish, Los Angeles

  • A living Rosary with your students

Religious Education students from Christ the King Parish doing a Living Rosary

  • Spend time praying the rosary and have students get familiarized with the prayers during October–Month of the Missions and Month of the Rosary
  • Encourage families to pray the rosary together

Prayer is the first ‘missionary work’ –the first! – that every Christian can and must do, and it is also the most effective, even if this cannot be measured”
–Pope Francis (May 28, 2018)

Downloadable Activities

Forms are in Adobe PDF format.  (Download Adobe Reader)

Download the worksheet that students can color, and read a small explanation of the colors of the World Mission Rosary. (PDF Version)

The Rosary and You Reflection (PDF Version)

Virtual Rosary –English Version

(Monday and Saturday Virtual Rosary Joyful Mysteries)

(Tuesday and Friday Virtual Rosary Sorrowful Mysteries)

(Wednesday and Sunday Virtual Rosary Glorious Mysteries)

(Thursday Virtual Rosary Luminous Mysteries)

Virtual Rosary (Santo Rosario Virtual) –Spanish Version

(Lunes y Sabado Santo Rosario Virtual Misterios Gozosos)

(Martes y Viernes Santo Rosario Virtual Misterios Dolorosos)

(Miércoles y Domingo Santo Rosario Virtual Misterios Gloriosos)

(Jueves Santo Rosario Virtual Misterios Luminosos)

Act Now

The reality of the material needs of the missions can never be overstated. Living in the United States can be difficult without electricity, clean water and a social support system which exists to help people through difficult times. The reality is that many people in the missions do not have clean water, they do not have homes, access to education, or opportunities to make changes in their lives.

The history of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles is that of tremendous generosity in support of missionaries and in response to the needs of the missions. You can make a donation on-line and designate it to any of the programs within the Pontifical Mission Societies. Donations in the form of a check or money order can be made out to Society of the Propagation of the Faith and mailed to:

Pontifical Mission Societies in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles
3424 Wilshire Boulevard, 3rd Floor
Los Angeles, California 90010 USA