Prayer shawl - why stitch this way?

Purl the knit stitches, knit the purl stitches each following row? Will the row sets of 3 look different as the scarf progresses? Isn’t it just a garter stitch 3 stitches wide - reversing from side to side. Why bother doing it this way other than the significance of using 3 stitches - could that be the only reason?
This is the Original Prayer Shawl. I’m making it for a friend that’s getting ready to have surgery. (((HUGS)))Verna
I think I’ve figured it out. I reknit a swatch with smaller needles & yarn so the pattern shows better.

Yeah, you do something like ribbing, then after 6 rows you switch and it becomes

Glad you figured it out! “Knit the purls and purl the knits” was confusing to me at first, and I even emailed the woman who originally wrote the pattern. (Janet Bristow?) She explained that besides creating a knit or purl stitch, the stitches as we see them on the needle, ready to be stitched, are called “knits” or “purls,” depending on whether they look flat (knit) or have the bump (purl).

The pattern is basically a triple seed stitch, and it does form “lines” in the shawl. It’s harder to see in Homespun, but is a lovely fabric. It helps me to always cast on 57 (or a similar number) so that I start and end each row with k3.

I know your shawl will be a blessing to your friend.

My friend is Catholic & I’ve been treating the knitting as if I’m saying a rosary for her. I’m really enjoying the whole process. It’s very soothing. (((HUGS)))Verna

PS at the same time, I’m working on another shawl but alternating the design so it’s kkk,ppp,kkk
next row ppp,kkk,ppp
next row kkk,ppp,kkk
It’s a really nubby textured yarn & this approach was better. The stockinette stitch reversing every set of 3 looks really nice on this one.

Verna, That is a beautiful way to pray as you knit this shawl for your friend! I’m in the process of becoming Catholic myself and am in the shawl ministry at church. You have encouraged me to try this.

Your other shawl sounds lovely too. Is it a ribbed look? Very nice with the textured yarn.