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January 27, 2023 2 min read
I believe we must thank God from the bottom of our hearts for the pontificate of Benedict XVI, rock and defender of the Faith, light in these times of confusion and deception.
Allow me to share a "working" experience we had with Pope Benedict XVI …
Thanks to Divine Providence for 33 years we have been the Vatican's exclusive supplier of Rosaries for the Pontiffs, starting in 1990 with St. John Paul II.
In 2005 we were entrusted with the task of customizing the Rosaries for Pope Benedict XVI. We felt a great responsibility, because we had to create the rosaries that he would personally gift to others during his apostolic trips and audiences.
We worked trying to give shape to what the Holy Father wanted, his requests regarding the crucifix and the centerpiece — the components that characterize the Rosary.
Regarding the centerpiece, the Pope wanted the representation of Mary Mother of the Church on one side and His Coat of Arms on the other.
The chosen image of Mary Mother of the Church was the famous mosaic "Mater Ecclesiale" in the Vatican, which can be seen on the facade in the courtyard building of St. Damasus from St. Peter's Square, this splendid Marian image had been wanted by his predecessor St. John Paul II.
The story of this mosaic is very beautiful: At an Audience in 1981, it was pointed out to John Paul II that St. Peter's Square was missing Our Lady, his prompt response was "Good, very good. We will have to complete the square" he then had the splendid mosaic made, which he blessed on December 7 of that year.
But it was during the creation of the Crucifix that this episode has remained in our hearts,
Pope Benedict XVI gave an indication that in its simplicity was a teaching on which to meditate : "It must inspire devotion.” He was concerned every detail would help prayer, we will never forget these words.
The Result was extraordinary and, thank God, lived up to expectations, so much so that we kept the same designs for his successor Francis as well.
In 2010, for the historic Apostolic trip to Fatima, we were given the task of also creating the Celebration Medal, which he donated on that occasion and of which a sample is currently kept in a special archive in the Vatican, another gift received from heaven.
— Alessandro Ghirelli
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