As a private devotion, the rosary can be used with as many or as few decades as is useful. It is a flexible and welcoming devotion through which the life of Christ and his message to us can be explored. The rosary opens the heart and quietens the soul. On discovering the mysteries, we become aware that the Holy Family knew great hardship along with family joys. They become truly ‘human’ to us in their sufferings, approachable and close. It is so often in making this connection with the earthly life of Christ that he and his mother become truly accessible.