Power of Prayer: Mater Dei Designs teaching others to make rosaries
“There’s not much room for the Devil to wiggle into your concentration in your prayer life. So I really think it’s the perfect prayer.”
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Two retired East Texas nurses are helping link others to a centuries-old Christian prayer tradition through their rosary-making ministry.
Longtime friends Cindy Schorr and Jennie Pierce took their shared devotion to the form of contemplative prayer and turned it into a spiritual outreach through Mater Dei Designs.
“It’s a very successful prayer tool,” Schorr said. “Very efficient. Almost failsafe. That’s how I feel about it. that’s what it’s done for me. And I see it in other people as well.”
Since the 1200s, the 59 beads of the rosary have been used by Catholics and other Christians to count a selection of standard prayers, recited in a particular order.
The prayers of the Rosary include the Apostles’ Creed; Our Father; Hail Mary; Glory Be; Fatima Prayer; Hail, Holy Queen; as well as meditations on selected mysteries.
Schorr and Pierce organized Mater Dei Designs after Bishop Joseph Strickland, of the Diocese of Tyler, requested they make rosaries for the Marian Center at Immaculate Conception Church in Jefferson.
Over the last three years, they estimate they’ve assembled around two-thousand rosaries.
Now, they’re holding weekly classes in Tyler to teach others how to use the proper tools and techniques, as well as sourcing the materials, like chains and beads.
Schorr says the best beads come from the region surrounding Sicily, Italy.
“Murano has a beautiful glass factory. And the Murano beads are absolutely stunning. And those Italian craftsman are artisans. They can put together some beautiful rods of glass. Then they slice them and heat them. They’re beautiful.”
Rosaries are typically held, not worn. But they like to call it ‘prayer jewelry,’ meant to catch the eye.
“The design is very important for that reason,” Pierce said. “Because it does help to transmit or inspire you to look at the rosary and think about the lives of Jesus and Mary.”
The colors of the glass or stone beads can be customized for the recipient. Special rosaries are commissioned for births, confirmations, weddings, ordinations, or for special intentions like sickness.
Schorr says this form of prayer invokes the senses.
“You’re saying the prayers of the rosary. You’re meditating on the mysteries of the rosary. There’s not much room for the Devil to wiggle into your concentration in your prayer life. So I really think it’s the perfect prayer.”
These powerful gifts are now being used in every corner of the country, according to Pierce.
The rosary-making class is open to anyone who’d like to learn. They typically meet Thursday mornings at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler. For more information, contact the parish office at (903) 592-1617.
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