Rosaries in Rwanda
I have some remarkable news.
Several years ago, my dear friend Dr. Lori Leyden felt compelled to fund raise to support an orphanage of Rwandan genocide survivor orphans. Over these last few years, Lori has shared with me step-by-step her challenges of discovering how to meet the needs of these inspiring children.
One of the challenges is finding work to support the young adults once they reach adulthood and must leave the orphanage. There is very little work and hardly any prospects. So Lori began planning an entrepreneurial training program to teach the young people how to produce products to support themselves.
A few months ago, I asked Lori if hand knotting Rosaries would be a good project. Lori got very excited. Over the last few months she has been working with her contact there to pull together the resources needed to make this project work.
Lori has 13 ProjectLIGHT Ambassadors in her program. These courageous young adults are tomorrows world leaders as they open-heartedly share the lessons they have learned with thier communities.
Well, Lori left for Rwanda a week ago. In her suitcase went 13 kits for making hand-knotted rosaries, one for each of the ProjectLIGHT Ambassadors. I want to thank everyone who contributed to making this possible.
I want to show what each of them is getting at this very moment.
These young people have practically nothing. I watched a video that showed their excitement at getting t-shirts so I had some Rosary t-shirts made up for them. This shirt has the beautiful picture that Winne Schouten painted for the cover of our book.
In addition, each Ambassador is receiving a kit that includes everything needed to learn to knot rosaries. When I asked Lori if they had scissors, she said no. If I want them to have something, I need to send it. So I did.
Each kit includes scissors and a measuring tape. They need to measure out the twine and cut it.
A lap chart has a picture of a completed Rosary. As they tie knots, they can hold their knot against the chart for size and spacing.
The blue cord is for learning how to tie the tricky little knot!
The mauve cord is for their first Rosary! I asked them to keep their first one to use in their own prayer practice.
Lori suggested that the creator of each Rosary write a blessing or prayer to go with it. So I included a note pad and pen.
With all this talk about hand knotted rosaries, I bet you are wondering what they look like! I had to learn to make them so I could teach the Ambassadors. See a picture of the sample I sent along with the kits to Rwanda on the left.
To teach the Ambassadors how to knot rosaries, we are transporting them to a meeting center for the day and feeding them. We have someone to translate, and Lori has the materials.
Once again, thanks to generous contributions, we have everything needed for this first round of training including more spools of the twine for the one(s) who have a natural ability to knot and are serious about making this a home business.
Lori and I had Skype practice at 5:00 am my time Sunday morning to test out the connection and prepare for the training session with the kids. Sadly, the internet connection was too weak to support video and audio. Lori is working out this challenge so I can connect with the kids on Wednesday. I'm very excited to meet them. Lori tells me that they dance, sing and pray before they do anything. I can't wait to be a part of our adventure together.
Mother Mary and the children of Rwanda
We are very excited to be a part of Mother Mary extending her reach to the children and young adults of Rwanda through our Rosary.
Our day long pilot project to train the thirteen Project Light Ambassadors is this Wednesday! The kids are very excited about it. They are deeply spiritual as they know they are only alive by God's grace and God is fulfilling their needs.
My hope is that we can fully support one or two of the Ambassadors by paying them to knot rosaries. Do you want one of these special Rosaries? We'll have our store open soon so you can order your hand-knotted Rosary!
Check back. I'll post about the experience!