The bishop-elect is also using the same process to create rings, or "beads" of different-colored woods to decorate the staff of the crosier. The beads on the crosier will be made of three strips of different-colored woods, an element which Konderla sees as "representing the trinity."
After all the pieces are carved and shaped, the staff will be stained and polished, resulting in its final form.
Bishop-elect Konderla's episcopal ring will also have a special meaning, and the soon-to-be bishop will also have a hand in making it. His youngest brother is a jeweler, Konderla and together the pair designed a ring based on St. Pope John Paul II's fisherman's ring. The ring will also incorporate elements from Konderla's devotions to the Sacred Heart, Divine Mercy and Mary, as well as gold from their mother's wedding ring.
The bishop-elect's brother has made a model of the ring, and next will make a mold that will be filled with the gold. Then, Fr. Konderla explained, his brother will add final touches such as adding the heart-shaped stone and carving elements into the ring.
Fr. Konderla said that he sees this project of creating his own crosier fitting and reflective of the beauty God creates in the world.
"Art is expressive of the divine," and woodwork in particular is an art form that must respect God's own beautiful creations, he said.
"The nice thing about working in wood is that even a dead tree, in a way is a living medium. The wood does simply do whatever you want, but you have to cooperate with the kind of medium that it is."
While the creation of the crosier might be one of the last woodworking projects he creates before his ordination, Bishop-elect Konderla looks forward to taking his love of woodworking with him to his new residence in Tulsa.
He said he's already visited his new residence, and was happy to see that it has a two-car garage – just large enough to fit his woodworking workshop.
Correction, June 8, 2016, 09:19: A previous version of this article stated that Father Konderla had made a crosier for Bishop Mark Seitz of El Paso, rather than Bishop Sis of San Angelo.