With May quickly approaching, we will celebrate the Month of Mary ... always a great excuse for some Mary crafts and deeper devotion to family prayer and the Rosary. Over the years, we've created a number of Rosary crafts and crafts honoring Our Lady, but here's a simple little craft that can help deepen our devotion to Mother Mary and the Rosary!
We have a number of Prayer Counter Crafts, including our Easy as Abacus Rosary, Divine Mercy and Stations of the Cross, but we simplified the Rosary Abacus even more for the little 4" Abacus. Since committing to saying the daily Rosary last summer, I’ve been continuing to find better ways to stay focused and pray my 5 decades a day. I hoped that a smaller prayer counter would come in handy ... (and it has!) especially when my hands are otherwise occupied and can’t hold my place within my Rosary. Just recently having completed my own DIY Icon Retreat, I opted to use a print of the Mary Icon I painted.
I found a cute little 4″ square wood frame canvas at the dollar store and printed out a small version of my Mary Icon. You can use any Mary or Jesus image you like, formatted to a 3" square. The 3″ print fits nicely within the frame and the 3″ opening is wide enough to accommodate 10 pony beads threaded on a pipe cleaner. The pipe cleaner is just bulky enough for the beads to slide and stay in place.
The unfinished wood frame was a little rough, so I gently sanded it down and painted it with white acrylic paint. I wound the end of each pipe cleaner tightly around the thumb tacks to secure them in place. The string of 10 pony beads are used to count the 10 Hail Mary prayers of each decade. The string of 5 pony beads (on the pipe cleaner hanger) count each of the 5 decades.
The Mini Rosary Abacus is travel-size, although I usually keep it on the kitchen counter or my desk and count my prayers as I go about the day. If you are able to laminate the image before securing it within the frame, the Abacus will be quite waterproof and survive the odd splatter of dishwater and regular wear and tear.
Copyright 2018 Monica McConkey
About the Author
Monica, mom of 5, blogs about Catholic crafts and family traditions at EquippingCatholicfamilies.com. She is an author and creator of Super Saints quizzing cards and over 45 Saint, Sacrament, Catechism and Prayer-packed Craft Kits to help teach the Catholic Faith. The Catholic teaching tools and gifts are available through Arma Dei, the Catholic family publishing company founded with her husband Bill.