Rosary Beads

A picture of the rosary beads
A picture of the rosary beads

An object that has a lot of cultural significance is my rosary beads. They are sky blue and silver, and I got them at the Vatican City when I went to Italy last April. My mom’s side of the family comes from a town in southern Italy called Pietragalla. My great-grandparents moved to America in the 1920s, to Troy, New York. My grandfather grew up in the United States and went back to Italy to study medicine at the University of Bologna, and then came back as a doctor. I still have second and third cousins who live in Pietragalla today, and sometimes on holidays or birthdays we call each other.  I live in a predominantly Irish-American area of Massachusetts, where my father’s family immigrated many years ago. The rosary beads are important to me because sometimes I feel less connected to my Italian ancestry than my Irish ancestry. My cousins with the last names of DeBonis and Scarchelli don’t have anything to prove, but I feel weird whenever I speak Italian or make traditional Italian food - like I really don’t belong with it. I bought the rosary beads in Rome to pray with, and remind myself of how happy I was on the trip. Now they live next to my bed, and everyday I see the beads, and remember who I am and how I don’t need to prove myself to anybody.

Place(s): Italy

– KS

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more