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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!

Perfect! My Badass Book of Saints + the Feast of St Teresa of Avila = A sale!!!!!

Perfect! My Badass Book of Saints + the Feast of St Teresa of Avila = A sale!!!!!



Go to this link to get the sale and use offer code: MARIA

I was happy to write the foreword to this book, here’s a little bit from that…

St Augustine is often credited with this idea: “There is no saint without a past, no sinner without a future.”

So, what about us?

Do we dare imagine ourselves, maybe in our wildest dreams, as becoming saints?

Sometimes the only images our minds have of saints are the white plaster ones in a churches or museums, or paintings and icons from long ago. Rather than perceive the holy boldness they possessed, we falsely picture their lives shrouded in an unrealistic piety, or an unreachable cleanliness-that’s-next-to-godliness. It’s sometimes hard to imagine them as real. Or messy. Or messed up. Or messin’ with people.

That’s what I like about this book. It introduces saints that smash the holier-than-thou and goody-two-shoes boxes we sometimes categorize them in.

Nobody’s dissing piety or faithfulness here. There are no saints without it. But women of holy influence come in a variety of shapes and sizes, temperaments and tempers. And they come to faith through countless circumstances and circuitous channels that bring them to God.

God’s beckoning to us may come through a variety of voices… some off beat and some in tune. Who inspires me is likely different than who might inspire you. Johnson’s litany of the courageous who’s in her life is infectious: It’s worth getting to know a saint or two who might actually be more like us than we’d care to admit, or one who might shock us into a new and more courageous way of living. This is a book that’s not afraid to talk of the beautiful mess, where faith meets real life, where saints and mortals coexist, one cheering the other on to glory.

Johnson writes:Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 10.41.18 PM

The path to sainthood starts — and ends — with my desire to act for the love of God.

I think I can do that….

Itll just take a little audacity on my part…. to banish the silly notion that “they dont make women like that anymore.” (p. 27-28.)

God, indeed, is still in the business of creating women who are destined to do great things.

By all means, order the the book! 

This^ is one badass book by María Morera Johnson — literally! Did I mention it’s about saints?!

This^ is one badass book by María Morera Johnson — literally! Did I mention it’s about saints?!


Yes, that’s really the title… My Badass Book of Saints... and from what I’ve read, the saints in there are pretty badass — but in a you’ll-never-guess-this kind of way! Fun stuff! And good story telling too. The book is due out in November, but let’s get excited and pre-order it NOW! Just cuz we can!

Let’s just say, this takes the idea of the feminine genius in a bold direction and breaks the weak and weird and un-funstereotypes some folks attribute to saints, and women saints in particular.

From the book’s description:

In this edgy, honest, and often audacious book… blogger and popular podcaster Maria Morera Johnson explores the qualities of twenty-four holy women who lived lives of virtue in unexpected and often difficult circumstances.

In My Badass Book of Saints, Johnson shares her experience as a first-generation Cuban-American, educator of at-risk college students, and caregiver for a husband with Lou Gehrig’s disease. Through humorous, empowering, and touching portraits of twenty-four spiritual mentors who inspired her, Johnson shows how their bravery, integrity, selflessness, perseverance, and hope helped her and can help others have courage to reach for a closer connection to God.

She presents remarkable holy women and saints–including the gun-toting Servant of God Sr. Blandina Segal who tried to turn the heart of Billy the Kid, and Nazi resister Irena Sendler who helped smuggle children out of the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II–in a way that brings their vivid personalities to life and helps readers live out the challenges of their lives with virtue and conviction.

My publisher asked me to write the Foreword. Bodaciousness! 


Confidential to Professor Johnson: Go, BeGo, Go!

Bodaciously toasting Badass...

Bodaciously toasting Badass…


Related: Check out this archived Among Women podcast with Maria Johnson.