Wearing Rosaries?


If I were to buy a Rosary that would be the right size for me to wear, would it be wrong for me to wear it if I wore it under my shirt to have on hand instead of in my pocket?


Under the shirt would not be like wearing it as jewelry I guess. I personally would not. This is what pockets are for.


I was taught not to wear a rosary when I was a young girl. My mother insisted that it must be carried in my pocket.
That said, I have read St. Louis deMontfort’s Secret of the Rosary. He states that we should openly wear the rosary as a statement of faith. We should not be concerned that we might be seen as peasants.
Last year I read a book about the Alamo written by David Wilkerson. It was historical fiction. Even so, he listed the resources he used for his research. He described the soldiers in Santa Anna’s army wearing their rosaries on their hats, like hat bands.
Most of the time, I do wear my rosary under what I am wearing. I own two twine rosaries. I have had too many rosaries break in my pocket.


Hmm… Not familiar with St. Louis Montfort’s writings…


15 years ago it was the Goths wearing black or red rosaries. Now it’s celebrities, even football players, wearing them as jewelry. Some gangs wear them. Why not wear a scapular instead, either cloth or in medal form? But then, I don’t like to see rosaries swinging & whipping around, dangling from a rear-view mirror, either. It just seems disrespectful to me.

No matter what your good intentions are, people who don’t know you will probably assume you’re emulating a celebrity and wearing it as jewelry.


I found this on the Ask an Apologist forum.

Q: Can a rosary be worn as a piece of jewelry?

A: “Sacred objects, set aside for divine worship by dedication or blessing, are to be treated with reverence. They are not to be made over to secular or inappropriate use, even though they may belong to private persons” (CIC 1171).

Essentially, sacramentals such as rosaries must be treated with respect, particularly if they have been blessed. Reverence is the attitude of awe or respect that is most often given to sacred things. By its very definition, it is an interior disposition that usually cannot be determined by onlookers by appearances alone. A person may be wearing a rosary as a statement of faith, to keep it handy for praying throughout the day, or to avoid losing it. Those reasons would be indicative of reverence and would not interfere with the canon’s directive that sacramentals must be treated reverently.

Ordinarily speaking, then, if someone is spotted wearing a rosary, he should be charitably presumed to be wearing it for just reasons. Only if the rosary is being put to an objectively sordid use (e.g., a rock star is using it as a prop in a music video, obscenely contrasting the symbolic purity of the rosary with the immodest or immoral actions of the performers) can we be sure that the rosary is being treated irreverently.


On a related topic, I also shudder when I see people having them on their rear view mirrors while driving. I know some pray it while at a red light (also disturbing to me really, because if you are deep into prayer you cant be paying attention to the lights, and may not be a considerate traffic neighbor in doing so if I have to wait more than a few seconds for you to snap out of it to hit the gas man and wake up!)
But, even then they should be in the glove compartment, your pocket, or purse, or whatever. Hanging them there is not a testament to your devotion to Mary or Jesus. Its plain obnoxious.


Most people who hang rosaries on their mirrors are devoted to Jesus and Mary and do it with all the love in their hearts. It certainly IS a testimonial. I don’t like to see rosaries swinging around from a mirror, but I don’t doubt the motives of the person who put it there!


The reason I asked is because I hate it when the Rosaries continue to break when I have them in my pocket, and being a student and sitting in those small chairs do not help one bit.

I more than likely will continue to put them in my pocket but get a case to put them in so that I don’t keep breaking them. But then again, I have wore one around my neck before and didn’t feel that it was a big deal since I wore it under my shirt.

I used to have a Rosary hanging from the mirror in mine and my mom’s car so that when we see the Crucifix it continues to remind us of the Sacrifice and Life of Christ.


Brian Keith,
Have you ever seen the handmade rosaries made from knotted cord? They won’t break or take up much room in your pocket.


Not that I know of…

I would like to get one of those to take around and keep my other Rosaries in my room or in my bookbag… Or somewhere where they won’t break as quickly.


I have read that wearing a Rosary around the neck, is common in some countries. But isn’t usually done in the west, except by some who misuse these Sacramentals,… as a form of jewelry. The atrocious “taste” of certain rock stars, comes to mind. :nope:

I carry mine in my pocket. :thumbsup:


I no longer have a vehicle. When I first started hanging a rosary from my the mirror in the vehicle I did own, I found it distracting. I also had too many break when I tried to remove them. Finally I found a small wooden rosary for the mirror and kept another one in the glove compartment for prayer. I do agree with an earlier post that it is unwise to pray the rosary while driving. At the same time, a rosary on the mirror reminds us of who we are and acts as a witness to others.

When I made my Cursillo, the priest talked about being in the Knights of Columbus. The KofC recommend carrying a rosary at all times. Like you, he found that his would break in his pocket. He learned to make twine rosaries while on an airplane. He gave each of us who made the Cursillo a twine rosary that he had made. I am wearing mine at the moment, under my shirt.

Many religious wear rosaries as part of their habit. I like the way one of the local deacons wears his on the belt, almost like a watch fob.


I have changed my mind about hanging a rosary from my rear view mirror recently. I never thought it very appropriate because I was sensitive that it was a sacramental and should be treated with the utmost respect. However, that being said, with the attempt by our secular culture to remove all symbols of religion from the public eye and ear, I find it more important than ever for Christians to demonstrate outward signs of their faith. You may influence people driving by in ways you don’t even know. I don’t put a blessed rosary on the mirror, however. It is an inexpensive black rosary but it makes a symbolic point as a public display of my love of Jesus and Mary. I keep the blessed rosary that my uncle gave me in the glove box. I also say a rosary everyday on my way to work. I can attest that I am a more careful and considerate driver since praying while I drive. I have had the most spiritually meaningful moments while alone in my car. As a mother and wife I can honestly say my commute time is often the only “alone” time in my day. I never pass people or rush to change lanes to “beat” others to the next light. In Houston it is quite common to see other drivers with rosaries dangling. I feel a closeness to them as I believe we share the same understanding of our mission in life. Finally, its hard to be a rude driver with a rosary dangling in you vision the entire drive!!!

Thanks for listening.


So wait, Rosaries don’t have to be blessed?

And secondly, does it matter if they are or aren’t?


When you purchase a rosary it is not blessed. When a priest or deacon bless a sacramental it makes it something that shoud be treated with special care and reverence. If it is broken it should not be thrown in the trash but disposed of respectfully by burial. I have also heard that blessed items should never be resold as the blessing is not “transmitted” with the sale. My grandmother, upon her death, had an entire jewelry box of broken rosaries. My mother took them to a jeweler and had them all repaired.

I do not know for sure whether sacramentals have to be blessed, not being an expert on all of the rules of sacramentals. I was taught, however, that a blessing is not just symbolic but is calling upon the Holy Spirit and empowers the person who uses the sacracmental with spiritual gifts.

I would certainly treat all sacramentals respectfully whether they have been blessed or not, but I believe that if something has been blessed it is special compared to an unblessed item. Hanging an item that has been blessed and is thus to be used in pray to invoke the blessing seems to be inappropriate. The rosary I hang is not used in prayer. It is a public statement, however, of my faith. The rosary I use to pray is reserved for that use.

I am always open to correction, however, if I have been misinformed. Does anyone have any clarification here?


Hi Brian. Have you ever seen/used a finger rosary? I use it in the car or at the gym - also fits great in a pocket, not expensive and hard to break. See



I had a crucifix and cross blessed by my priest, and its okay since its only a sacramental. (I am not christian yet)
I can even have ashes on ash Wed, ect. Again, sacramental.
NOT sacrament.

Does it matter? It mattered to me. I was excited to know the man teaching me the faith I will hold, and teach my child blessed mine.
I will give them to her on her big days…


I wear my rosary around my neck and personally don’t care if other people think I am wearing it because of a fashion fad. If religious can wear their rosary around their waist as a sign of their vocation then I as a lay person can wear it around my neck as my lay vocation as well.

Honestly, I think that out of all Catholic groups…American Catholic’s (ahem, not all but many lol) way over analyze matters of the faith. Why would you even care what John or Jane Doe on the street think of your religious sacramentals? I refuse to live my life thinking “Oh my God, she will think I am trying to copy Madonna or some gang banger if I wear my rosary!”

The intention behind wearing the rosary is the most important thing. If you are devoted to the rosary as a faithful Catholic then all that other stuff becomes irrelevant.

I think ones faith should be lived out BOLDLY and without making excuses for being a faithful Catholic and displaying that faith for all to see. :knight2:



Frankly, I can’t understand WHY or HOW someone could think that a rosary hanging in a car is irreverant. When I see people with a rosary in their car, I am pleased and comforted that someone has the guts to put their faith out there for people to see. I have a small 1 decade rosary that I keep in my car, so that I can see Jesus on the cross, and remind myself of my faith as I go through the day. I do it as a way of keeping God and faith IN my life. Why someone would be offended by me putting my faith in a public place for others to see, and to remind myself as I go through the day, I can’t fathom.

Furthermore, if wearing a rosary helps you in your faith life, and you’re doing it in a reverant way, why not wear it? I say go for it.

Maybe if people kept a rosary close to them as they go through the day it would help more people stay faithful.

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