Learn more about Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious or order a signed copy!

Third Sunday of Advent Music – “Ready the Way”, by Curtis Stephan

In this video, the artist/composer talks about the meaning behind the song for a few minutes. If you just would like to hear the song, skip to 5:26 in the video. I’m liking this one because of its simplicity… I can just sing it as I go through my day.

Books for the Catholics on Your List: 5 Keepsakes, 5 Classics, & 5 Good Stories + Bonus suggestions

Books for the Catholics on Your List: 5 Keepsakes, 5 Classics, & 5 Good Stories + Bonus suggestions

What kinds of books do I like to read, and what makes a good Christmas present?

I like keepsake kinds of books, I like spiritual classics, and I like a good story…

I’m offering this list to see if there’s something on it that might be of interest for your Christmas shopping needs.

(I also mention this with full disclosure, as stated in my sidebar, that any purchases made via the links on my blog will directly benefit this apostolate and keep Among Women up and running.)

Keepsake books

The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament

Great Bible Study aids in this volume… love it!

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Divine Intimacy: Meditations on the Interior Life  

A book to pray with. Powerful meditations.

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Queen of Apostles Prayer Book

Another good book to pray with, great prayers from the saints in here alongside classic prayers.

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Jesus, Present Before Me – Fr Peter James Cameron, OP

The perfect companion to bring to adoration, or to use before or after Mass.

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Benedictus – Day by day Meditations by Pope Benedict XVI

A good primer on the mind and heart of this Pope.

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Spiritual Classics

The Reed of God  -Caryll Houselander

One of the best books on Mary, ever!

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Introduction to the Devout Life – St Francis de Sales

If you’ve never read a spiritual classic, De Sales is the place to start!

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Story of a Soul – St Thérèse of Lisieux (study edition)

Here’s the book that turned a young 24 year old woman into a Doctor of the Church.

It didn’t hurt that she was a saint either!

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Divine Mercy in My Soul – The Diary of St Maria Faustian Kowalski

Get to know the Divine Mercy in the Year of Mercy!

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God Alone – A collection of the writing of St Louis de Montfort.

(This includes The Love of Eternal Wisdom, True Devotion to Mary, and Secrets of the Rosary, among others.)

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Good Stories 

The Screwtape Letters – by C.S. Lewis

Many have heard of this book, but how many have read it. Anything by C.S. Lewis is a gift!

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Witness to Hope – The autobiography of John Paul II – By George Weigel

Powerful chronicle of the life of this new saint!

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The Greatest Salesman in the World – Og Mandino

I read this when I was a teenager. I still love it. There are tangential Christmas themes too!

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In This House of Brede – Rumer Godden

A great novel. Timeless.

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The Well – by Stephanie Landsem

One of the newer writers out there, with a great read that gets behind the eyes of the Samaritan woman.

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BONUS: Books that I have contribute to (mostly for women readers), plus a link to my book, Blessed, Beautiful, & Bodacious.

BONUS 2: My favorite journals are the larger sized (7 1/4″ x 9″) hardcover bound journals by Peter Pauper Press

BONUS 3: I recommend Catholic Digest Magazine – yes I write for them, but a great periodical for the home!

BONUS 4: I recommend the Magnificat – this daily devotional for Mass, plus meditations, articles, and morning and evening prayer.

Among Women 200: A Special Edition Celebrating “200”!

Among Women 200: A Special Edition Celebrating “200”!

Whoooooo!  Among Women reaches the milestone of 200 Episodes!

This episode features comments & feedback from Among Women listeners! What a blessing to hear from friends of the podcast!

The “Among Women” Guest: Kelly Wahlquist. We discuss her new book Created to Relate — describing that women are 9781616368760_24eb906a-2e06-4426-bfd6-a28629f8f31f_medium“radically” relational — and it helps us evangelize!

Winners of the AW 200 Drawing Prize Packs are announced! They are:

Jennifer Harned, Angie Wolfe, Debbie Quakkelaar, and Felicia Brown-Anderson.

Thank you to all who entered!

Listen to this new podcast!

Find all the archives of Among Women here.

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A recent video from Catholic Match about our podcast:

The Wild Goose… a video series to follow in the coming year

The Wild Goose… a video series to follow in the coming year

Want to grow in the spiritual life? It’s impossible without the Holy Spirit.

I’m excited about this new video series from TheGooseIsLoose.com. It features Fr Dave Pivonka, and is produced by 4PM Media. Here’s the trailer…

All the videos is the series are still to come, but you can watch the first full length video here. (Pray before you do.)

 

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Knots in Your Life? Mary Can’t Wait to Tackle Them! – guest post by Marge Fenelon

Knots in Your Life? Mary Can’t Wait to Tackle Them! – guest post by Marge Fenelon

I almost didn’t answer when the phone rang. I was slammed with work and deadlines looming. But, something nudged me to catch this call regardless.

I’m so glad I did.

On the other end of the line was an old friend I hadn’t heard from in a while. She’d called to thank me for my book, Our Lady, Undoer of Knots: A Living Novena. She’d found it unexpectedly at her parish’s gift shop and snatched up a copy right away. She was really excited.

What she really called about what Day 4 of the Novena – Mount of Olives: The Knot of Hopelessness.9781594716300.jpg.232x

Slipping into tears, she told me that she’d called because she had to let me know how much that chapter meant to her. Unfortunately, she’s facing a heartbreaking, life-threatening, and seemingly hopeless situation with one of her grown children.

He’s lost in all senses of the word.

But, that’s why I describe my friend’s situation as seemingly hopeless rather than truly hopeless. Nothing is ever truly hopeless when we turn to our Blessed Mother under the title, Our Lady, Undoer of Knots.

This devotion, dating back to the seventeenth century, has proven time and again to be exceptionally powerful. For centuries, people have taken the knots in their lives – injustice, separation, confusion, hopelessness, grief and loss, discord, betrayal, envy and pride, or affliction – to Our Lady Undoer of Knots. Once surrendered into her capable hands, the knots become undone and we are released from their snare.

Only, that is, if we’re willing to release those knots to her.

My friend had called to tell me that, by reading my book, she was given renewed courage and was able to release her knot of hopelessness into Our Lady’s hands. She immediately felt a sense of peace and needed to call to tell me so.

That’s exactly how it works. Mary is waiting to take up the knots in our lives the second we hand them over to her. Once in her possession, she works diligently, tirelessly, to undo them, one by tedious one. The knots most likely won’t be done instantaneously and probably not overnight, either. It may take a while, but they will become undone. Mary has that “power” given to her by the heavenly Father.

The difficulty is that we’re often reticent to turn our knots over to Mary because we either stubbornly want to untie them ourselves (we can’t) or because we’ve given up on them.

This is what my friend experienced. The simple act of turning her knot of hopelessness over to Our Lady, Undoer of Knots gave her immediate consolation and assurance that now far more adept hands were working on it.

Do you have knots in our life? Turn them over to Mary. She can’t wait to tackle them!

 

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This post was written by Marge Fenelon. My thanks to Marge for sharing her love and trust in Mary, especially on this feast of the Immaculate Conception.

Marge Fenelon’s newest book, Our Lady, Undoer of Knots: A Living Novena, is part of the celebration anticipating Among Women’s 200th episode. Enter a comment over at AmongWomenPodcast.com to enter the drawing. The deadline to enter is Dec. 9, 11:59pm. You can also purchase the book here.

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Find the latest episode of Among Women here. Look for the 200th episode to be uploaded later this week on Dec. 10.

 

 

Year of Mercy Resources

Year of Mercy Resources

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It is a Jubilee of Mercy from Dec 8 2015 to Nov 20 2016. It’s theme is “Merciful Like the Father.” (See Luke 6:36: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”)

Links that describe this year:

Pope Francis’ Misericordiae Vultus document announcing the Year of Mercy.

Official Vatican website for the Jubilee Year of Mercy

About the logo (at right –>)

Vatican events related to the Year of Mercy

Pope Francis’ Prayer for the Year of Mercy

An emphasis on Confession and Reconciliation

How to Make a Good Confession — downloadable PDFs and more – highly recommended

A Plenary Indulgence in the Year of Mercy — What’s that? How do I qualify?

Articles and videos of related interest:

Learn about the message of Divine Mercy from the Marian priests who foster that devotion.

Things to Do in Year of Mercy

The Spiritual Care Unit — mobile ambulance van offering confessions

Pope Francis and Mercy – Commentary from Bishop Robert Barron

 

This makes me think… about the challenge of letting the Lord lead every aspect of my life…

The Three Comings of the Lord

We know that there are three comings of the Lord. The third lies between the other two. It is invisible, while the other two are visible. In the first coming he was seen on earth, dwelling among men; he himself testifies that they saw him and hated him. In the final coming all flesh will see the salvation of our God, and they will look on him whom they pierced. The intermediate coming is a hidden one; in it only the elect see the Lord within their own selves, and they are saved. In his first coming our Lord came in our flesh and in our weakness; in this middle coming he comes in spirit and in power; in the final coming he will be seen in glory and majesty.

In case someone should think that what we say about this middle coming is sheer invention, listen to what our Lord himself ways: If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him. There is another passage of Scripture which reads: He who fears God will do good, but something further has been said about the one who loves, that is, that he will keep God’s word. Where is God’s word to be kept? Obviously in the heart, as the prophet says: I have hidden your words in my heart, so that I may not sin against you.

Keep God’s word in this way. Let it enter into your very being, let it take possession of your desires and your whole way of life. Feed on goodness, and your soul will delight in its richness. Remember to eat your bread, or your heart will wither away. Fill your soul with richness and strength.

Because this coming lies between the other two, it is like a road on which we travel from the first coming to the last. In the first, Christ was our redemption; in the last, he will appear as our life; in this middle coming, he is our rest and consolation.

If you keep the word of God in this way, it will also keep you. The Son with the Father will come to you. The great Prophet who will build the new Jerusalem will come, the one who makes all things new. This coming will fulfill what is written: As we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, we shall also bear the likeness of the heavenly man. Just as Adam’s sin spread through all mankind and took hold of all, so Christ, who created and redeemed all, will glorify all, once he takes possession of all.

-St Bernard-
Sermon on Advent, Liturgy of the Hours.