Bobbi Baker describes herself as a miracle baby, in more ways than one. Not only were her parents older than most when she was born, but her arrival played a big role in her father recapturing his faith.
“My dad went to the Vietnam War and lost his faith after seeing a whole bunch of war atrocities. He was really lost,” she said. “They didn’t know that they could get pregnant with me, and my dad says it was the miracle of the Holy Spirit. My birth was what brought him back to the Church.”
Given that backstory, it’s no wonder the family had close ties to their parish, St. Agnes in Mena. Baker, 29, who was an altar server for Mass and special liturgies growing up, would eventually join the choir and has been a caregiver for frail and elderly congregants. But her primary claim to fame is producing rosaries.
“We had a parishioner, Pat White, and her rosary was always broken,” said Baker, a school nurse at Mena High School. “She would ask my mom if maybe we could fix her rosary. And that was how it started: making rosaries by fixing rosaries.”
The favor turned into a hobby and finally a labor of love. Baker, who is getting married in November, likes to make rosaries that are colorful and celebratory, hanging her creations on a rack in the vestibule for anybody who needs one. Through the intercession of the Blessed Mother, she sees her rosaries as lures for the strayed and searching as well as the devout.
“I always thought our Mother Mary would really like it if we can bring other people into praying the rosary by giving them something pretty, that they like to look at,” she said. “That’s my own take on it.”
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