Until a week ago, I never heard of this Penal rosary before. I heard about it through a customer--the same customer of who I made the big mistake with. Remember him? What a nice guy he was about the whole thing. He probably didn't know it, but the way he handled the whole thing got me thinking how I also need to be courteous even when someone else is in the wrong.
Funny thing is, I thought I had sent his rosary to the wrong address because he said that the tracking number I gave him was wrong and his package never showed up--but just a few days ago he received his package! It must have gotten held up in the mail somewhere; he said it was well worth the wait. So my first big mistake really wasn't a mistake after all--which means that I need to go through the first big mistake all over again.
Anyway, back to the rosary--this customer had suggested that I make them as he felt that a lot of customers would like them--especially the men--and I'm always looking to expand and improve my rosaries for the men.
I didn't know what a Penal rosary was, so I Googled it. What an interesting rosary with such an interesting history!
Back when the Church was being persecuted, the penal rosary was made so that the faithful could still pray the rosary without anyone knowing. As you can see, the Our Father bead is by the large ring instead of by the crucifix; this is so that you could loop your finger through the ring and have the rest of the rosary hidden under your sleeve. It's pretty sad to think that people had to hide their rosaries--yet sometimes when I'm in the waiting room at a doctors office I think to myself that I could say the rosary while I wait but I'm hesitant to pull a rosary out in front of everyone. I admit cowardice here--but this is where a penal rosary would come in handy!
A large key ring is used sometimes in place of a regular ring so that you can hook it onto the rest of your keys. Some people call it a Penal key chain rosary. Handy, huh?
The crucifix is probably the most interesting of all--full of symbols of the crucifixion, this crucifix has a ladder, symbolizing the ladder by which we reach heaven, the Hammer, for the nails of the cross, the Halo or Crown of Thorns, the Jug or Chalice, symbolizing the Last Supper, the Cords for binding, symbolizing the scourging at the pillar, and the Spear, of which pierced the side of Jesus.
|Photo credit StairwayHeaven11.blogspot.com|
On the reverse side is the crock which symbolizes the prediction of the betrayal of Judas: "The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me." Matthew 26:23
Above the bowl or crock, is the rooster that crowed 3 times, and above the rooster are the nails of the crucifixion.
Now tell me that the Catholic Church is boring. It has more symbolism than any other religion I know.
The beads are again, the "square beads" that I make with the men rosary and my newest rosary, Our Lady of Good Counsel. I mixed two different colors of green, yellow, silver and white. It works well for basically anyone. I don't have a rose with this particular rosary, because I had the men in mind for this one. But I've looked at many different Penal rosaries and it doesn't look like any sort of rules on how to make it applies; I've seen square beads, round beads, pink, blue, stone, glass, clay, whatever. My hope is to make more of them for men and women, and to make all different kinds, depending on how well they sell.
More Penal rosaries to come--look for it in my Etsy shop!