The one single most identifiable Catholic prayer is the Rosary. I would state that it is the most recited prayer of the Church. The rosary, glorious, sorrowful, joyous and illuminating. The prayer is as meditative as it is instructional. It is Sunday school on a string. The mysteries and their decades are easily committed to memory. The beads also are easy to carry. Its cyclical nature mirrors the cycles of life. They also feature prominently in the Churches own liturgical cycle. Christmas, Lent, Easter are all represented on those beads. Rosaries contain the essential elements of the stained glass windows. Stained glass windows were crafted to educate. Rosaries supplement the Breviaries carried about for liturgical prayer. Often they replace them. The beads are easily recited throughout the day. Recited while sitting or on a walk, both quietly and aloud. Prayed with beads or fingers or pebbles or chalk marks on paper or wall. I wonder, how may POW’s survived through this simple prayer? How many prisoners survived their ordeal through the intercession of Mary. From fumbling or reciting those beads.
When the disciples asked the LORD how to pray, Jesus gave them (Mt 6:7-15) the “Our Father.” That prayer is also compact any remembered. It was so different from the babbling speeches delivered by the others of the time. Their prayers were lengthy grandiose statements. Those ornamented prayers are to impress the ears in the audience, but not the soul nor heaven. The simple prayer of Jesus reached both regardless if recited in sound or in silence. Jesus’s prayer formed the original rosary, called the pater noster. One prayer said over and over. One of the pillars of Lent is prayer. Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory be!