Ave Maria Meditations
The seven joys are usually listed as:
- The Annunciation.
- The Nativity of Jesus.
- The Adoration of the Magi.
- The Resurrection of Christ.
- The Ascension of Christ to Heaven.
- The Pentecost or Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and Our Lady.
- The Coronation of the Virgin in Heaven.
The beautiful devotion to Our Lady can be prayed on a seven decade rosary and is also known as The Franciscan Crown. This devotion dates back to about 1422.
For more information see http://www.prayerfulrosary.com/Franciscan.html
The Franciscan Crown Rosary begins quite simply by stating the first Mystery and then praying one Our Father and ten Hail Marys while meditating upon it. This same procedure is then followed for the other six Mysteries. Even though it is common practice nowadays to add the Glory Be at the end of each decade, and even the Fatima Prayer, these are not required. It is customary to finish by adding two Hail Marys in honor of the 72 years that Our Lady is said to have lived on earth, and one Our Father and Hail Mary for the intentions of the Pope.
The story of the Rosary of the Seven Joys of the Blessed Virgin dates back to the early 15th century. A pious young man named James had been accustomed to adorning a beautiful statue of Mary with a crown of flowers, which he had picked and woven himself. He later entered the Franciscan Order, but either because of a lack of time or permission, he was no longer able to continue this devotion. Distraught because of this, he decided to abandon the religious life and return to the world.Our Lady then appeared to him and convinced him not to leave the order. She told him that he should not be downcast because he was no longer permitted to adorn her statue, for she would teach him a way to give her honor which was much more pleasing and meritorious. Instead of a crown of flowers, which quickly wither, he was to weave a crown of prayers, and these prayers could be offered at any moment. She then taught him the Rosary of the Seven Joys, adding that these prayers would not only form a more acceptable crown, but they would also yield innumerable graces for himself and others.
This simple but beautiful devotion of praying the Crown of the Seven Joys of the Blessed Virgin soon spread over the entire Franciscan Order and was officially established in 1422.