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Praying the Rosary Like Never Before

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"If the rosary is not a part of your regular prayer life right now, it's easy to get your feet wet with this devotion." - Edward Sri

I love Edward Sri's work - his books and lectures have allowed me to gain confidence in my prayer practice and my awareness of the Catholic faith. This book was wonderful and completely on pace with Sri's other work. Praying the Rosary Like Never Before is a wonderful guide to incorporating the rosary into your prayer practice and praying it in different ways. This was so comforting and definitely made for great conversations with my church-based book group.
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This was an inspirational bible study.  It would be great for a group study and has thought-provoking questions at the end of each chapter.

First, I should admit that I have always loved praying the rosary.  I enjoyed this book because it made that love for the rosary grow and gave me facts to defend myself when nonbelievers ask questions about devotion to Mary and the importance of the rosary.

Whether you already enjoy praying the rosary or you never have you will be blessed by reading this book.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book courtesy of NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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I found the book a little “dry” for lack of a better word. I thought it could have drawn the reader in more. It seemed to be focused more on the technical, which just didn’t connect well with me.
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I pray my Rosary daily.  This book has enriched my prayer life. I am in my 60's was happy with the way I prayed but this will bring a whole new way for my daily meditations into the gospel through the rosary and Mary.  You are never too old to make your prayer life deeper.
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I really enjoyed this book by Dr. Sri. The Rosary is such an important part of the prayer life of a Roman Catholic (or, it should be). This book really made the Rosary accessible no matter the situation you find yourself in. The included Scriptural Rosary aspect was also very nice. Reading through this book helped me not to feel so bad about getting my daily Rosary in by praying a decade or two when I have the chance. The Rosary is a wonderful prayer and this book is a wonderful book that really makes the Rosary accessible to our age.
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Praying The Rosary Like Never Before
By Edward Sri
Published by Franciscan Media, July 2017

 Many Christians - and not just Catholics -  like the Rosary, love the Rosary, want to pray it more often or for longer, but worry that they are somehow doing it "wrong" and that they are not getting as much out of the spiritual practice as they would have hoped.

 In this easily readable and surprisingly deep book, Dr Sri tells us he feels that two and a half minutes is enough time to pray a single decade, and that there are very, very few people who are so truly incredibly busy that they cannot give God that length of time in the course of a day.

He urges us not to fret if we struggle with praying a five decade rosary as many saintly people have found that they can only manage a few decades at a time, and that too is fine. There is no single "right way" to pray the Rosary and different people  may need different techniques or need to change techniques at different times in their lives or spiritual journeys. The Rosary has proven to be eminently adaptable to individual  and contemporary needs, but Dr Sri is careful to point out that it is important to remember not to gabble and to show reverence and due respect to the Holy Name of Jesus whenever it occurs in prayers.

He provides very nice meditations and selections from Scripture for meditative pondering which can be used before, during and/or after each Mystery, for those who find it easiest to pray in this way.
A particular problem for Orthodox Western Rite Christians would be the use of the traditional Ignatian method of using the imagination to picture scenes relating to the Mysteries, but I do know devout Western Rite Orthodox who happily use  the Scriptural Rosary technique.  I really like the sometimes unusual scripture verses for meditation and prayer using this technique at the end of the book.

This was a most interesting read, and is a useful and informative book which could be used and adapted for Anglicans, Catholics and Western Rite Orthodox alike.
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I've always thought of myself as the poster child for someone who absolutely loves and adores the Rosary, and thinks it's amazing, yet is also too lazy and too much of a perfectionist to get around to actually praying it. But this book has changed my prayer life. It has taught me that praying the Rosary doesn't have to be all or nothing, and that God wants you to come before him as you are, and as you can. Rather than a restrictive and nerve wracking activity, the Rosary is versatile and you can't make it work in your own life, what ever your own life looks like. Highly recommended!
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I cannot recommend this book enough! I love it! Very well written and easy to understand.
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For the last couple of years I have had a few books by Edward Sri on my to be read list, but had not got to them yet. After reading this book they have jumped way up in that pile of books waiting to be read. Dr. Edward Sri packs a lot of material into this short volume on the Rosary. In 12 chapters and under 200 pages this book is about encountering Jesus, engaging Jesus through Mary and being encouraged in our faith through this devotion. Dr. Sri encourages us by unfolding this simple prayer and taking the intimidation factor out of this practice. Throughout the book we are inspired to engage with Jesus and Mary and the biblical narrative. And Through the reflections, and meditation we will encounter Jesus and be drawn closer to him.

The book opens with a quote from Pope Saint John Paul II: "These words express, so to speak, the wonder of heaven and earth; they could be said to give a glimpse of God's own wonderment as he contemplates his "masterpiece"-the Incarnation of the Son in the womb of the Virgin Mary.… The repetition of the Hail Mary in the Rosary gives us a share in God's own wonder and pleasure: In jubilant amazement we acknowledge the greatest miracle of history." And that is Sri's starting point. He outlines how the Rosary can be integral to our faith, and how it can draw us home.

The chapters in this book are:
Why Pray the Rosary? 
The Wandering Mind and Other Struggles 
Too Much Attention to Mary? 
The Hail Mary: Jesus at the Center 
Repetition: You Can Never Say "I Love You" Enough 
The Origins of the Rosary 
More than Words: Ten Ways to Encounter Jesus More in the Rosary 
Seeds for Contemplation: Biblical Reflections on the Joyful Mysteries 
Seeds for Contemplation: Biblical Reflections on the Luminous Mysteries 
Seeds for Contemplation: Biblical Reflections on the Sorrowful Mysteries 
Seeds for Contemplation: Biblical Reflections on the Glorious Mysteries 
A Scriptural Rosary 
How to Pray the Rosary

In the preface Sri states:

"A good Catholic friend of mine summed up what I think is the sentiment of many: "If you could help a simple, ordinary guy like me understand what the rosary is all about and inspire me to find time to pray it, that would go a long way. I just need to figure out how to pray it in a way that will be meaningful to me."

That's what this book aims to do: inspire ordinary Catholics to turn to their beads more often and help them pray the rosary in a way that is meaningful for their lives-in a way that is truly life-giving. And in the process, I hope they'll discover what many great saints and ordinary folk throughout the centuries have experienced: a deeper peace, joy, and encouragement that comes from the subtle but profound encounter one can have with Jesus and Mary in this prayer."

And that is what he does throughout the rest of the book. As you work through the book either on your own or in a group, each chapter ends with a series of questions. They are intended for group study but can also be worked through individually. Each chapter has either 4 or 5 questions in this section. The chapter that had the greatest impact on me was "More than Words: Ten Ways to Encounter Jesus More in the Rosary" The questions from the end of this chapter as an example are:

"Group Study Questions
1. Why is the Glory Be a fitting finale for each decade of the rosary? How does this prayer relate to the mysteries we contemplate?
2. How do the beads aid your prayer of the rosary?
3. Pope St. John Paul II wrote, "It is clear…that many people will not be able to recite more than a part of the Rosary" every day, and hence comes the practice of reciting different sets of mysteries on different days. Some people might find it difficult to recite even five decades at one sitting-or kneeling. What are some ways of incorporating the rosary into a busy schedule?
4. The pope suggested that reciting different mysteries throughout the week "has the effect of giving the different days…a certain spiritual 'color'" (RVM, 38). How can the Joyful Mysteries color your Mondays and Saturdays? The Luminous, your Thursdays? The Sorrowful, your Tuesdays and Fridays? The Glorious, your Sundays?"

The four chapters going deeper in the bible on each of the different mysteries are wonderful. And overall it is an excellent book. I would see it becoming a spiritual classic on the Rosary over the next few decades. It is a wonderful book and a great tool for our spiritual life. I highly recommend it!
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When I first started praying the Rosary I had lots of questions that I never really got answered, this book answers those questions and so much more. It gives so much more than the standard "how to" of one Our Father, ten Hail Marys. This book takes you through the why, opening my eyes to much more than I knew. I am walking away with much more and the desire to know more. I got myself a copy of Rosarium Virginus Mariae, the encyclical by Pope St John Paul II which is quoted and referenced often throughout the book.
The book has twelve chapters. The first seven chapters gives you the hows and the whys of the Rosary. You are furnished with help and understanding for the defense of the Rosary. Help and understanding for struggles in starting and praying the Rosary. There is also a short history of the Rosary. Each chapter has group study questions to help you delve deeper and for further reflection.
Chapters eight to eleven takes you deeper into each decade of the Rosary as I have never been. The scriptures that relate to the various decades are broken down, expounded and opened to me in ways that have given new meaning to each decade. These allow for further contemplation, meditation and understanding.
Chapter twelve is a Scriptural Rosary. I've prayed the Scriptural Rosary before it is great especially if your mind wanders alot during prayer.
This book is great for group study as well as individual reading. The discussion questions at the end of the first eleven chapters work well to encourage discussion in a group setting or allow for deeper reflection should you decide to go through this book on your own.
I consider Edward Sri a great and respected resource for anything Marian, even after owning and reading other books by him he has still managed to impart new knowledge and understanding to me in this book.
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There's lots to like in this short book on the Rosary that's full of insights and advice. An expanded version of his book from 2003, the book falls into three sections. The first section looks at the Rosary as a whole: the history, the prayers, and advice about how to say it when you're distracted.

The second section devotes a chapter to each of the four sets of mysteries. Each of the mysteries is explained in mediations that are in-depth and enlightening. Often I don't care for this kind of reflection, but these were some of the best I've read.

The final chapter is an aid to devotion with a short scripture reading for each Hail Mary of each decade of each mystery.

Sri's book is an excellent resource on this devotion.
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