Hey – I was on “The Good Catholic Life” on WQOM — podcast version here!

Hey – I was on “The Good Catholic Life” on WQOM — podcast version here!

Screen Shot 2014-03-21 at 8.32.15 PMYesterday I was happy to share some studio time with two of my favorite media guys from the Archdiocese of Boston, Fr Chip Hines and Dom Bettinelli. The show opens with film critic, Fr Chip, giving some of his thoughts on the new movie “Son of God”. And then I was introduced.

13312470023_99e42a6561_k

We talked about the church’s positive message for women as presented in my book, Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious on the radio show “The Good Catholic Life”, produced in the studio at the Pastoral Center in Braintree.

13312483193_c4c1b6827e_k

It was a wide ranging discussion and I’m grateful for the questions that were asked.

13312325535_5ae09c1c22_k-3

Listen or download the show here.

Photos by the talented George Martell. More photos here.  Thanks George!

On Spiritual Friendship, from The Christophers

On Spiritual Friendship, from The Christophers

This is a topic that is dear to my heart, and I’m very happy that The Christophers have taken up the subject in one of their newest booklets, written by author Mary De Turris Poust, who coincidentally, also wrote Walking Together: Discovering the Catholic Tradition of Spiritual Friendship

At his blog, Christopher Close-up, Tony Rossi gives us the text of the booklet, which you can request in a hard copy from The Christophers at the end of that blog post.

Here’s a snippet:

The definition of “friendship” has taken some hits in recent years. After all, we live in a world where social media allows us to “friend” or “unfriend” someone with the click of our computer or smartphone. But that’s precisely why face-to-face and heart-to-heart friendship is needed more than ever. These are the times that call for spiritual friendships, the kinds of bonds that reach to a place deep within our souls, far beyond shared interests, book clubs, and shopping dates.

SpiritualFriendshipSpiritual friendship is not an invention of our modern times. In fact, we can trace it back into the Old Testament. “A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure,” we read in Sirach 6:14. We’re not talking about just any good friend here; we’re talking about a friend whose hunger for spiritual connection, whose journey toward God mirrors our own.

Aelred of Rivealux, a Cistercian monk who lived in the 12th century, wrote the original book on spiritual friendship. His collection of letters was meant to help readers discover the beauty of this kind of soul-to-soul relationship. Five centuries later, St. Francis de Sales took up the mantle and wrote extensively about spiritual friendship in his classic “Introduction to the Devout Life.”

“If the bond of your mutual liking be charity, devotion, and Christian perfection, God knows how very precious a friendship it is! Precious because it comes from God, because it tends to God, because God is the link that binds you, because it will last forever in Him,” wrote St. Francis.

But spiritual friendship is not some remnant of a bygone era. It is alive and well among faithful friends who want to be companions on the spiritual journey through highs and lows, good times and bad, from here to eternity.

There’s a lot of good stuff in this piece, so don’t miss it! I’m also pleased that my book gets mentioned.

Pat Gohn, author of “Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious: Celebrating the Gift of Catholic Womanhood,” talks about the importance of “spiritual motherhood,” those relationships where a woman—whether biological mother or not—nurtures the spiritual life of another. This is just one of the many incarnations of spiritual friendship available to us today.

Gohn says, “As the parent of a child, we freely pour our love and energy into their growth, even though a child is often not capable of a reciprocal giving back. A spiritual mother willingly gives of herself, and lets her love be planted in another person’s life, investing without expectation of a return, yet leaving the results to God, because God is the source of all our goodness in the first place.”

That same spirit is very much at the heart of spiritual friendship—loving without expecting anything in return, offering without strings attached. And it’s something that flies in the face of what our society tells us. In a world where there’s “no free lunch,” spiritual friendship is counter-cultural. It says, yes, you can give and receive this love, this bond, this communion without fear of indebtedness or guilt.

Read the rest here.

Give Books as Christmas Gifts this year…

Give Books as Christmas Gifts this year…

I love my publisher, Ave Maria Press… and yes, this is a little commercial for the joy of giving books as Christmas gifts.

You just might want to do some Christmas shopping over there, or wherever you buy your favorite books.

350_28683453709_2229_nSome of my best pals have books at Ave Maria Press…. and many of them have been my guests on Among Women chatting about what they’ve written…

Lisa Hendey,  Elizabeth Scalia,  Danielle Bean and Elizabeth Foss,  Dawn Eden,  Sarah Reinhard,  Tim & Sue Muldoon,  Patrice Fagnant MacArthur,  Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle,  Marge Fenelon… and me, too.

OR, if there’s a Mom in your life who’s not much of a reader, she may enjoy the audio book from Lisa Hendey, complete with chapter sidebar voice-over efforts from me on the audio book version of The Handbook for Catholic Moms.

Ave Maria also carries some of my longtime favorite authors like Henri Nouwen,  Caryll Houselander, and  Eugene Boylan.  

1526244_10151925642503710_1948740991_n

 

banner photo credit

other photos: Ave Maria Press

Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious receives more kind reviews… get signed copies on sale before Christmas for $12 each!

Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious receives more kind reviews… get signed copies on sale before Christmas for $12 each!

Buy a signed copy of Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious at a sale price!

Peggy Eastman of the Catholic Daughters of America magazine SHARE writes:

This book provides a refreshing, honest affirmation of the special gifts of Catholic women in a breezy conversational style that photoenhances the message. At its heart, this book is a joyful look at what it means to be feminine, faith-filled and both.

In an era when there is still some confusion about women’s roles and about gender equality, Gohn sets the record straight, writing “Men and women, while being distinct, are equal in the eyes of God. For women who have been made to feel inferior or who have suffered unjustly at the hands of others because of their femininity, this is very good news.”

This book is divided into three parts: The Blessed Dignity of Women; The Beautiful Gifts of Women; and The Bodacious Mission of Women. In the last section, the author delivers an unabashed love letter to Catholic womanhood, encouraging women to live fully as God’s beloved. Here are two summary sentences: “Femininity in its fullness, naturally and supernaturally, in body and soul, is a gift of God to you to bring you into a relationship with him and with other people. It is God’s plan for you.”

Dawn Eden, author of My Peace I Give You, now in pursuit of doctoral studies in theology, writes on why this book makes a great gift:

When I saw the title and cover of this book, I feared it would be corny or glib. It’s not. Pat Gohn is an engaging, intelligent writer who clearly lives her Catholic faith deeply and longs for others to discover the joy she has found. I was very impressed at how well she was able to convey the truths of the faith with great depth in highly readable language. This is an excellent book to give to a convert who wants to intensify her faith life, a cradle Catholic who needs help understanding the Church’s teachings on women, or to a mom who needs help keeping the faith while managing her work/life balance.

More endorsements here. More reviews and interviews here.

Order a signed copy before December 15, and get your book before Christmas!

(Sale price: $12! Plus $5.95 for a padded envelope via Priority US Mail. Limit 3 books per envelope, US Mail delivery only.)

PLACE AN ORDER.

:::

Need something cheaper and faster? Get your e-book here.

Mine is April 10! When was your baptism? The Pope Gives Homework!

Pope Francis asks his audience today if they all know their baptismal day! When our children were growing up we celebrated their baptismal days in a way like birthdays!

My thoughts on baptism — it is one reason why we are soooo blessed! –from an excerpt from my book, Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious: Celebrating the Gift of Catholic Womanhood:

In the graces of Baptism, God became a father to me. I was born into the family of God, and the love of the Trinity was extended to me by name—Patricia Ann—baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Spirit. Of course, I was an infant at the time, and still, Baptism was and is a great gift that my parents obtained for me. Baptism secured my dignity as a beloved daughter and brought healing to my life. The graces of Baptism empower me to make Jesus’s words my own. As I said before, when she knows she is beloved, a daughter can trust the father’s love. It is a deep blessing. Whose we are matters.

 In Baptism we meet the fatherhood of God, blessed and dignified as beloved daughters. Unfortunately, it is a gift we can fail to recognize or take for granted. Imagine owning a costly heirloom worth millions, but having no idea of its value because it is locked away in a chest and forgotten. For many of us, that treasure is our Baptism, specifically the knowledge that we are God’s beloved daughters. That knowledge is the key that unlocks many graces.

In Baptism, we are made for holiness. We are brought into the family of God. We are yoked to God, a Blessed Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We are daughters of a loving Father who is perfect and transcendent beyond our earthbound impressions. He always knows what’s best for his daughters. If we ponder that, relying on the graces we’ve already received in Baptism, we will begin to reclaim the girl who may be carrying around a lot of angst and rejection where fatherhood is concerned.

Baptized Christians utter the word Father six times in the Nicene Creed. There’s a reason. We are blessed daughters standing before a magnificent, loving, all-knowing Father. Plus, the Creed spells out our belief and relationship with the three-in-one God.

 We are a sister and friend to Jesus Christ, a most sublime, supernatural-yet-approachable brother. In Jesus, we see the invisible Father. The Savior who died for our sins reversed the curse imposed at Eden after the fall. Jesus is the truest friend we will ever have. Read the gospels and see his respect for every woman he has ever met, breaking with the social conventions of his day.

Finally, we are consecrated witnesses to the Spirit. The searcher of hearts, the source of all wisdom, and the giver of life abides in the tabernacle of our soul. By extension we are baptized into the Church, the family of God on earth, together with saints in heaven. This familial relationship with God is the truth of our dignity, our beatitude, and beatitude is supreme blessedness.

Everyone wants to find happiness, right? Blessedness is church-speak for happiness. You are extremely blessed. You belong to God. You were made for truth. You were made for goodness. You were made to know beauty.

You are beautiful. You are loved.

You are unrepeatable, unique, valuable.

You are sacred in God’s eyes.

You are sacred.

You.

You didn’t earn it. It was free. You have a link to God that you didn’t create. It flows from the lavishness of God’s love. Your worth, in his eyes, is priceless. The prophet says that God considers you “the apple of his eye” (Zec 2:8).

Baptism reveals our true dignity as children, beloved of God. That’s our beatitude, our blessedness.   

You can get  signed copies in time for Christmas.

             

My Visit to EWTN

My Visit to EWTN

Late last month, wedged between my recent speaking-related jaunts to New Hampshire and Minnesota, I was flown down to Irondale, AL to the studios of EWTN.  I was the guest of EWTN at the request of Johnette Benkovic, the founder Women of Grace ministries and hostess to its related TV show and radio hour.  Together we recorded five TV shows in a series that will air either later this year or into next year. When I find out, I’ll let you know.

I also got to sit in with Johnette on a live radio show that aired on October 24, and you can listen to that show here in podcast form.

Thought you’d like some of the photos I took in between the acts.

a bit of the facilities - not the best panoramic photo...

a bit of the facilities – not the best panoramic photo…

I don’t mind telling you that doing anything on television is a bit daunting for me. Between the hair, the make-up (which I’m allergic to!), and wardrobe changes, it was a full day, and a bit exhausting. But I give credit to Johnette who not only did 5 shows with me for TV, and one live radio hour… she was on day 4 of 5 days of recording programming. I told Johnette she’s got amazing energy and stamina! She’s a pro and an inspiration of poise and confidence.

I'm with Johnette Benkovic on the set of "Women of Grace". 10.24.13

I’m with Johnette Benkovic on the set of “Women of Grace”. 10.24.13

I was very happy to begin the busy day with daily Mass in the famous chapel (that so many have seen on TV).

The Chapel at EWTN. I was happy to attend Mass and adoration there with the Friars!

The Chapel at EWTN. I was happy to attend Mass and adoration there with the Friars!

The monstrance in the chapel. (No host there, I was not taking pictures during adoration!)

The monstrance in the chapel. (No host there, I was not taking pictures during adoration!)

Me with Mother. Well, almost.

Me with Mother. Well, almost. That was the oil painting in the outer hallway near the chapel.

All the programming at the EWTN studios takes place steps away from Mother Angelica’s old office space where she worked for many years. Here’s a few photos of that special work space.

The desk where Mother Angelica worked for years. (She's now living about an hour away from the studios in a monastery.)

The desk where Mother Angelica worked for years. (She’s now living about an hour away from the studios in a monastery.)

Crucifix in Mother's office.

Crucifix in Mother’s office.

Artwork in Mother's office.

Artwork in Mother’s office.

I also enjoyed good weather the day I visited, and took a little walk around the grounds… and discovered that many people enjoy visiting EWTN and making a little pilgrimage to the grounds and chapel there.

St Francis is a fan! Seen just outside the outdoor altar area.

St Francis is a fan! Seen just outside the outdoor altar area.

That's a good idea!

That’s a good idea!

Mary's statue

Mary’s statue

A lovely outdoor altar on the grounds.

A lovely outdoor altar on the grounds.

EWTN's satellite dishes -- beaming the message out to the world!

EWTN’s satellite dishes — beaming the message out to the world!

When you do the dishes you can see the dishes... Just outside my kitchen window... the satellite dishes  for EWTN.

When you do the dishes you can see the dishes… Just outside my kitchen window… the satellite dishes for EWTN.

EWTN owns a few private homes where guests live during their stay. I was happy to watch two world series games while I was there for two nights!

 

I’m on Christian Witness on Catholic TV Tonight at 8:30pm (plus, here’s a link for it online)

I’m on Christian Witness on Catholic TV Tonight at 8:30pm (plus, here’s a link for it online)

Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 7.11.44 PMTonight at 8:30pm I’m very pleased to be the guest on Catholic TV’s Christian Witness, hosted by moral theologians — who just happen to be husband and wife –Drs. David and Angela Franks, professors of theology at St John’s Seminary in Boston, and part of the leadership team of the Theological Institute of the New Evangelization. (Among Women listeners may recall my conversation with Angela Franks, PhD, in March.)Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 7.11.16 PM

In this episode of Christian Witness we talk about themes from my book, and specifically about a woman’s need for love, and relationships, and a Christian woman’s call to be a spiritual mother. I hope you enjoy it. Watch it on Catholic TV’s website on demand, or find it tonight on Catholic TV at 8:30pm eastern, or  this Saturday, September 7th at 4:00pm eastern.

Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 7.49.19 PM

 

Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious… on the road and on the blogs… and the Seal of Approval!

Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious… on the road and on the blogs… and the Seal of Approval!

 

Screen Shot 2013-08-01 at 10.04.34 PMNext week I’ll be in Somerset, NJ! I hope to see you at either the Catholic Marketing Network (CMN) show, or if you are a writer, at the Catholic Writers Guild conference that runs concurrently. I’m looking forward to meeting booksellers and store owners, other authors, and my wonderful publishers and editors at Ave Maria Press! This year is my first time attending either conference as a book author, so that’s a new experience (!) and one that is not lost on me as to what a privilege it is to have a book selected to be published. The writing of articles and blog posts and catechetical materials continues as my day job, but the book has opened many new doors to meet women all around the country! I’m very grateful.

photo

I’m also grateful for a handful of reviews that are still coming in regarding the book over this summer from a few bloggers.

From the USCCB’s marriage blog, “For Your Marriage”, there’s a review from Mary Ann Paulukonis who was skeptical about the book’s cover, but was won over by what was inside. She writes…

This book bothered me right at the beginning. Something about the cover image — a woman wearing a polka-dot dress, 3-inch heels and a halo while sitting on a cloud — turned me off. The word “bodacious” in the title made me wonder if the book should be taken seriously.

So what made me change my mind while reading “Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious”?

You’ll have to read what she liked here.

I’m also grateful to Dorothy Pilarski for her generous review of the book… and to Mary Ellen Barrett for her kind words. 

So, if you are still looking to squeeze in some summer reading, I hope you might check out one of these reviews and consider adding BBB to your summer reading, or your wish list! I’m happy to say that BBB received the Catholic Writers Guild “Seal of Approval”!

CWGSOA_200

Endow reviews “Blessed, Beautiful, & Bodacious” and offers a discount on it for purchase now thru July 31!

Endow reviews “Blessed, Beautiful, & Bodacious” and offers a discount on it for purchase now thru July 31!

IMG_4710

Terry Polakovic*

One of the nicest things in the book-writing process for me was when Terry Polakovic, the Executive Director of Endow, offered to write the foreword to Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious.  She writes, “Pat and I both seek to communicate that when women appreciate and nurture their “feminine genius” through prayer and faith-filled living, they are equipped to do the urgent work of transforming the culture into a civilization of love.”

I am so grateful to have Terry’s endorsement, and one way to express my thanks is to tell you about why I asked her to write the book’s forward, and it’s simple: I have long been a fan of Endow’s book club-style of evangelization and catechesis for women to know and learn about the feminine genius, and their dignity and vocation as women.

Terry writes about Endow’s mission on their website:

We are blessed as women. And our blessing contains many mysteries that God reveals to us along our journey of life and faith.  I still remember my “aha” moment when I read Pope John Paul II’s Letter to Women and realized that God made every woman, including me, with dignity and worth. That defining moment was a revelation that moved me to help establish Endow.  Since then, I have been thrilled to meet Catholic women and girls who are discovering the fullness of our faith—perhaps for the very first time.

I met Terry by phone back in 2009 when she agreed to be interviewed for one of my earliest Among Women podcasts. We struck up a friendship then, and a few years later we were finally able to meet in person out in the Denver area when I was traveling with my husband on business. I’m so grateful for her enthusiasm for the book and to meet this beautiful leader, who has been recognized for her service to women by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI  himself!

Recently, Gina Warner reviewed Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious for Endow readers…

“If”.
For women, the word just might be our greatest deterrent to loving ourselves in the here and now.

“If I could just lose 10 lbs.”
“If I get that job.”
“If he would just apologize.”

Because if we spend too much time in the ifs, we miss what is: that we are blessedbeautiful, and as Pat Gohn puts it, bodacious (her melding of “bold” and “audacious”). The author regales this message in her recent book.

Pat Gohn’s Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious is likely to initially spark interest among readers simply by its testimony that the Catholic Church has been “singing the praises of women out loud”. But where it truly penetrates hearts is in the lively, three-part dissection on Catholic womanhood she provides to illuminate this truth.

Where some authors fall short when it comes to unpacking theology in a manner that is accessible to all, Gohn manages to accomplish heartily. Through her injection of personal stories that are marked with spirited wit and an ever-enthusiastic grip with which she holds her faith, Gohn makes the theology of Catholic womanhood understandable and straight-forward.

To read the rest of the review, go here.

Here’s where you can order Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious at a discount, now thru July 31, 2013. Be sure to use the special offer code listed!

Endow offers book studies, special events, resources and more! If you’re a woman, be sure to look for Endow in your diocese, and if it is not already there, or offer to bring it to your diocese by contacting Endow! (There’s even a Girl Genius series for youth!)

Go learn more about Endow! 

Thank you Endow,

and Terry Polakovic,

for your incredible support of my book!

72dpi

*photo adapted