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Among Women 198: The Beauty and Mission of Mature Womanhood

Among Women 198: The Beauty and Mission of Mature Womanhood


Myself alongside Lisa Mladinich with her new book, True Radiance, Summer 2015.

On Among Women, we look at the blessings and challenges of midlife and beyond! This is a great take on the feminine genius and how women become more beautiful — not less! — as they age. Join author and amazing catechist, Lisa Mladinich, and I as we discuss the heavenly sides of dealing with our own mortality, and rediscover our mission in God’s plan as we discuss themes from her new book, True Radiance: Finding Grace in the Second Half of Life.

You’re going to want to listen and share this!

World Meeting of Families Keynotes available on Video!

World Meeting of Families Keynotes available on Video!

I’m a little late to this news, but I wanted to share it with you. So many people have asked me about the trip to Philly for the World Meeting of Families, and to see Pope Francis, and I’m glad to be able to share some of the content here.

Here is the direct link for the videos that were captured from the keynotes.  I had many favorites, but I’ll just mention the messages from Helen Alvare, Scott Hahn, Bishop Barron, Pastor Rick Warren & Cardinal Sean O’Malley, and Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle from the Philippines. Now run along now and begin listening to the all. There are some I missed that I have yet to get to — so I’m bookmarking this page!


If you missed my Among Women podcasts related to the World Meeting of Families, you’ll find three:

Two short Espresso shots here and here, and a 90minute recap with author Lisa Hendey, my traveling companion.


Among Women 197: Badass Buddies and Pope Selfies – an interview with Maria Morera Johnson

Among Women 197: Badass Buddies and Pope Selfies – an interview with Maria Morera Johnson

9781594736324.jpg.232xThis Among Women episode is one I’ve been waiting for all year! My friend, author and Catholic Weekend host María Morera Johnson, joins me for the Among Women interview. Maria brings some of the stories behind her new book, including how the book got its name:  My Badass Book of Saints: Courage Women Who Showed Me How to Live. This is one book that I hope many women will read, and a book I especially hope you’ll put in the hands of someone who may never pick up a book of saints otherwise.

In this conversation, my writing buddy and good friend gives us the background on how a word like “badass” got into the book’s title, and her own powerful lessons of how God has helped her  — and a variety of saints and impressive women — persevere under trials and hardships! Not only that, Maria talks about her recent pilgrimage to Cuba and her personal meeting with Pope Francis and other church leaders!

I also profile the life of St Rose of Lima, as told in an excerpt from Maria Johnson’s book.

Plus there’s news about the The Women on the Way Conference, with yours truly, Nov. 21 in Richmond, VA

Listen to the podcast, here!

And finally, this sweet bit of news…

Celebrate Among Women’s 200th Episode, coming Dec 10th!!!
Enter the free drawing by entering your comments below in the comment box, or email your comments and your voice memos to me at amongwomenpodcast@me.com. Comments for entry can also be left at the Among Women podcast facebook page. All names for the drawings must be in by Dec 9, 2015 at 11:59pm Eastern. Winners will be announced on the Dec 10th podcast – Episode 200! I give descriptions of all these book on the podcast.
There are four prize packs possible to win:

The Feminine Genius Pack!


The Mary Pack!


The Saints Pack!


The Mom/Grandmom Pack!

Among Women 196: Finding God’s Peace

Among Women 196: Finding God’s Peace

Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 9.33.26 PMIn this new episode, I happily welcome author Heidi Bratton to Among Women. Together, we discuss her new book, Finding God’s Peace in Everyday Challenges.

Heidi is an author I’ve long admired and I think you’ll be blessed by hearing this conversation. Also in this show, I’m reviewing what we mean when say, “rest in peace”. Plus, our saint profile is the founder of the Society of the Sacred Heart, St Madeleine Sophie Barat.

Listen to Among Women today!

Among Women 195: Praying With Your Children

Among Women 195: Praying With Your Children

Among Women 195 is all about praying with your children.

In this new Among Women podcast, my guest, Grace Mazza Urbanski, and I met while we were both attending the World Meeting of Families last month. Grace’s ministry in the Apostleship of Prayer led to her new book, Pray With Me: Seven Simple Ways to Pray with Your Children. This is a beautiful new resource for families and I’m happy to share some great tips from Grace and the book in this interview. Also profiled in this episode is the life of St Silvia, mother to St Gregory the Great.

In other news: Something is amiss with the post editor over at the AW site, so I’m archiving the links to this show here, until the fix happens over at Among Women.

Links for Episode 195 of Among Women with Grace Mazza Urbanski

Listen to the this latest Among Women pScreen Shot 2015-10-20 at 3.52.44 PModcast here, or at iTunes — episode 195

Grace Mazza Urbanski’s Book: Pray With Me

Grace’s Blog: Praying with Grace

Apostleship of Prayer

Bio of St Silvia

Book: Prayers for Married Couples

Other shows of related interest:

AW 186 with guest Leila Marie Lawler

AW 76 with guest Laura Lee Richard

AW 104 and AW 105 with guest Melanie Bettinelli


Among Women features Dawn Eden and her book The Thrill of the Chaste

Among Women features Dawn Eden and her book The Thrill of the Chaste

AW-1400x1400-logo-300x300In this episode of Among Women we examine the virtue of chastity with the author of The Thrill of the Chaste, and a returning guest to AW, Dawn Eden. There is something in this conversation for women in every vocation. Chastity needs cultivating in every state of life! Also in this show, in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary this month, a look at Edith Stein’s writings on the relationship between Mary and us.

Note to Parents: some of this subject matter may be a bit mature for children.

I hope you’ll enjoy this latest episode of Among Women!  Listen here, or find it on iTunes.



I’m at World Meeting of Families… some links, photos, and an espresso shot Among Women to get started

I’m at World Meeting of Families… some links, photos, and an espresso shot Among Women to get started

There’s been so much to do in the last few days, and I’m hard pressed for time to share it all, but here’s a few posts that review some my journey to the World Meeting of Families, plus a new podcast with the jubilant voices of some of the participants I’ve met from around the world… from the sidewalks of Philadelphia and PA convention center hallways.

Listen to the Among Women Espresso Shot #2: the World Meeting of Families


I’m blessed to be sharing this with my globe-trotting good friend, Lisa Hendey –– who is truly in her element. This is how I see Lisa several times an hour… sharing her experiences on social media. She is breathtakingly committed to sharing this far and wide…. and I’m in awe of her.


This will be how I will remember seeing her… discovering all that is good, and in a relentless search

In search of coffee...

for coffee…

Read Lisa Hendey’s posts here and here.

And don’t miss Lisa’s Aleteia report on her mid-week trek to see and hear the Pope in Washington DC.


There was much time spent around the Ave Maria Press booth.


With Helen Alvare, Teresa Tomeo, Lisa Hendey, and Catherine (Helen’s daughter).

And several reunions with friends so far…


Meeting the amazing Diana von Glahn, center.



With Terry Polakovic, who is soon to be retired from Endow.



with the Daughters of St Paul.



With “Ben.”



And with a liberty bell replica at the media center.


We did get to see the real Liberty Bell, in front of Independence Hall.


Hope to be back with more soon!




Among Women “Espresso Shot” debuts today. Our topic: Perseverance

Among Women “Espresso Shot” debuts today. Our topic: Perseverance

I hope you will enjoy this new, shorter, version of Among Women. Listen here!

The topic is perseverance and it’s a reflection on Psalm 103. Listen to the podcast.


Faithful Among Women listeners will know that I recently announced on episode 191 that I’m attempting to offer fresh audio three times a month… that is, podcasts coming on the 10th, 20th, and 30th of each month. However, given my schedule, doing full length podcasts with that frequency may not always be possible. Therefore, I’m introducing these “espresso shots” –short strong jolts of faith sharing and teaching. I often feel the full length podcast is a friendly conversation over coffee with good friends. But when you are missing your friends, sometimes even a quick visit is worth your time. I hope you concur that, in this case, less is more — if it gets us together more each month!


Please add your comments or review in the combox below, or over at Among Women, or on the Among Women Podcast Facebook page.


Among Women 192: Finding God in Hollywood and where you are

Among Women 192: Finding God in Hollywood and where you are

Among Women is back!

This episode recaps my summer break from podcasting and returns with reflections on building a strong prayer life to help to keep us in God’s will. In it I unpack these themes in the life and writings of St Elizabeth Ann Seton

Christin Jezak, Official photo courtesy of IMBD.

Christin Jezak, Official photo courtesy of IMBD.

We also find them in the work of actress/producer Christin Jezak, who shares her unique calling to be a Pauline Cooperator, a lay member of the Pauline family with a special media charism. Don’t miss this latest show! 

A special shout to AW listeners Maria, Mary, and Tracey for meeting with me this summer and discussing new ideas for the podcast! Hear all about it on this episode. As of now, I’m going to upload a new show on the 10th, 20th, and 30th of each month. (This one is for the 30th.)  Listen for more details.

Also described in the podcast, are blog posts (with photos) of the mini-pilgrimages we made this summer to the National Shrine of St Elizabeth Ann Seton in Emmitsburg, MD, and the Cathedral of St Augustine in Florida.

Listen to Among Women!

Making God a Priority in Your Catholic Home: Resources to help parents be prayer leaders

Making God a Priority in Your Catholic Home: Resources to help parents be prayer leaders

Priorities, to-do lists, goals…. we all get it, we’ve all got so much time and we’ve got to budget it according to what we wish to achieve. The spiritual leadership in our homes must be a priority.

As Catholics, our priorities are directed by the two great loves that could summarize the Ten Commandments: Love God and love our neighbor. And we must be deliberate about that — especially in our families. We must be in relationship with God — that means we pray — and we must share that relationship with our families. Parents need to be prayer leaders in our home. When my children were small we taught them prayers both formal and spontaneous. That and more! (I give real examples from our home in some of the articles I list for Catholic Mom and in the Among Women podcasts.) (Also, if you are a woman reading this, I also give a framework for spiritual motherhood in my book, Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious.)

Here’s a few resources I suggest.

Three great books:

First, a new book: A Short Guide to Praying as a Family: Growing Together in Faith and Love Each Day.61eiluMcKxL._SY498_BO1,204,203,200_

Last month on National Review Online, Kathryn Lopez interviews Sr Jane Laurel, OP, editor of the book. Sr Jane Laurel says…

Praying as a family helps us to see with the eyes of faith. We see others and the tasks of daily life in a different light, a light that sets us free from unrealistic expectations about ourselves, others, our time, and “the way things should be.”  Faith also helps us to see all the blessings the Lord gives to us.  As we see His providence and His presence at work in our daily lives, we are filled with gratitude and love.  And, we begin to invite Him more and more into our daily plans and decisions, to see as He sees, and to love as He loves.  Receiving His love for us inspires us to go out in love to the members of our family with this same love.  When family members love one another, they become more respectful towards and attentive to one other.  What we could really say is that they affirm one another’s existence, saying to one another in effect by their attitude and actions: “It is good that you are.” Everyone loves to be around people who love and appreciate them.  So, when family members love and appreciate one another, they are happy.  Thus, when a disagreement or a misunderstanding occurs, the foundation of faith and love are already there, and so opening the lines of communication and reconciliation comes more easily.

To be absolutely honest, it really is a matter of priorities. The things that are important to us are those for which we make time. God and family should be our top two priorities; but we are all weak, we can easily allow other things — technology, sports, social media, and entertainment — to crowd out our time for God and our time for family. We can allow ourselves to get on to the hamster wheel, keeping ourselves so busy that we never stop and take time to think about where we are placing priorities in our lives.  We don’t have to live on the hamster wheel. The Lord wants to show us a simpler way. So the Scriptures tell us, “Cast all your cares on Him, because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7). The more cares we have, the more we need to rely on God. He can reveal to us where we are off with our priorities and pursuits. He knows those things that will not truly make us happy and the things that will.  Prayer is the way of entrusting our lives to Him and accepting His guidance.  He shows us the things that only create anxiety and frenzy.  He shows us also the things that lead to communion and communication, the things that genuinely refresh us, versus the things that only drain us of energy. His way is much simpler. Making prayer part of the fabric of daily life leads to peace. Through it, parents can also teach their children how to find peace. For instance, if a parent picks up a child from school and realizes that the child is preoccupied with something, the parent would most likely try to encourage the child to talk more about what he or she is thinking and feeling.  After listening and responding to the child’s answers, the parent could say, “Let’s pray about this together.” They can then pray together, and allow God to give them light and peace.  By making prayer the priority, they hand things over to God and this almost instantaneously makes life less stressful. It’s not about what we can do; it’s about what we can let God do in our lives. [Read it all. ]

Second, a book from last year that I’m still recommending, The Little Oratory: A Beginners Guid to Praying in the Home.  by David Clayton and Leila Maria Lawler. Look for the Among Women podcast I list below with Leila Lawlor — one of the most popular downloads in the last year!

Third, also from a year ago, still offers more: Six Sacred Rules for Families: A Spirituality for the Home by Tim and Sue Muldoon.

Articles from my Catholic Mom archives:Screen Shot 2015-08-22 at 6.34.10 PM

Raising Them for Jesus

Spiritual Growth in a Catholic Family, Part One, and here’s Part Two.

Make sure you are familiar with Catholic Mom. It’s one of the best guide to family resources out there! For example, 3 Ways to Create a Prayerful Home, or this, Dear Young Family at Mass. Bookmark CatholicMom.com!

Among Women Podcasts:

Screen Shot 2014-02-16 at 7.09.47 PMAW 186: On Faith, Grace, and Prayer in Marriage and Family Life with Leila Marie Lawler talking about The Little Oratory.

AW 76: Raising Saints for the Church with blogger Laura Lee Richard

AW 104 Little Ones in the Domestic Church, Part One, with blogger Melanie Bettinelli, and here is its Part Two.

Finally, some strong encouragement and straight talk from School of Love in Kansas City.


PS: (Oh yeah, that vintage photo of me above in the banner photo? That’s the 1989 baptism of my daughter, my middle child.)