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World Mission Rosary
Embracing the World in Prayer

The World Mission Rosary was envisioned by Archbishop Fulton John Sheen, then the national director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, in 1951. He made the request on a radio show that his listeners “Embrace the world in prayer.” To do so he introduced this Rosary.

Its uniqueness is in the five colors represented in each of the decades. Color symbolism in a rosary is a gentle reminder on which to focus our prayers.

This rosary honors the work of mission, our call to be missioners, and world unity and peace through its special emphasis on each of the Earth’s regions, where prayers are needed for all people who live and play and pray just like each of us! Each region is represented by a different color, it is not only a beautiful rosary, but rich in symbolism.

Colors of the World Mission Rosary:


The colors/areas of the Mission Rosary include:

  1. Green – for the forests and grasslands of Africa

  2. Red – calling to mind the fire of faith that brought missioners to the Americas (US, Canada, Latin America and Native Americans)

  3. White – symbolizing Europe, the home of the Holy Father

  4. Blue – for the ocean surrounding the Islands of the Pacific (Australia/Oceana)

  5. Yellow – symbolizing the morning light of the East and ‘beginning of civilization’ for Asia/ Middle East


Note: These colors do not need to go in any particular order in the making of the Rosary.


World Mission Rosary Day


Every year the first Friday in October (this year October 6th, 2023) is World Mission Rosary Day (sometimes called Missionary Childhood Day) – a day when kids are asked to recognize their young peers in other parts of the world.  Our diocese celebrates this day each year by asking our schools and parishes to pray the World Mission Rosary at some point on or near that date.  It is a wonderful way to join other kids around the world in praying for our world – just think of the great power of prayer and the difference we can make!

If your school, parish, family or group is interested in praying on World Mission Rosary day, please contact us for FREE World Mission Rosaries and/or more information. (We do request that you pay for the shipping)


View a rosary request form here:

Praying the World Mission Rosary


The Mission Rosary can be prayed in the same way that you would pray any other Rosary, be that in a group, with your family or individually. Begin by praying the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, 3 Hail Mary’s and the Glory Be, followed by which ever mysteries you choose to pray at the time and their corresponding prayers for each decade. As you do so, simply keep in mind the area and all people of the world that each decade’s color represents, and perhaps offer a special petition relating to that area after you announce the mystery.


The Mission Rosary can also be prayed in a special way, using the “Mission Mysteries” developed by Maryknoll’s mission organization. These mysteries are:

  1. The 1st Mission Mystery: The visit of the Magi, the first missioners (Matthew 2:1,11)

  2. The 2nd Mission Mystery: Jesus talks with the Samaritan woman, crossing borders/breaking down boundaries (John 4:28)

  3. The 3rd Mission Mystery: Jesus cures the centurion’s servant, acts of healing and service (Luke 7:2)

  4. The 4th Mission Mystery: The conversion of Paul, expanding the faith to the Gentiles, the “other,” and thus the world (Acts 9:20)

  5. The 5th Mission Mystery: Jesus sends out His disciples, we’re all called to mission (Mark 16:15)


Download and print information on how to pray the World Mission Rosary to keep and share with others:

Make Rosaries:

We have been encouraging schools and parishes in our Diocese to pray the World Mission Rosary (especially in October, which is Mission Month as well as the Month of the Rosary). But WE NEED YOUR HELP!

Please consider making World Mission Rosaries for us to share with students and parishioners who would like to pray this beautiful prayer. It could be a fun project to do with your mission group, classroom or family.

Use the color information above to make them, or contact us for more information. To purchase supplies to make World Mission Rosaries a great place to look is Our Lady’s Rosary Makers. You may also use beads and supplies used for regular Rosaries, simply using the 5 designated colors rather than making the rosary solid.

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