Character Training in Early Adolescence

Painting by Harold N. Anderson

This is an excerpt taken from a treasure of a book published in 1924 called The Catholic Teacher’s Companion – A Book of Inspiration and Self-Help.

It was originally written for teaching Sisters….

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How beautiful is youth! how bright if gleams

With its illusions, aspirations, dreams!

Book of Beginnings, Story without End,

Each maid a heroine, and each man a friend!

-LONGFELLOW.

No phase of character training is more interesting or more important than the education of the adolescent. Adolescence has always appealed to the heart of the true teacher. At least one biographer of Our Lord is of the opinion that many, if not most, of the disciples chosen by Christ were adolescents.

Socrates knew that there was no more fertile source for inspiration than the companionship of adolescents. Plato is at his best in those dialogues in which adolescents play the chief role. G. Stanley Hall confesses of himself: “As for years an almost passionate lover of childhood and a teacher of youth, the adolescent stage of life has long seemed to me one of the most fascinating of all themes, more worthy, perhaps, than anything else in the world of reverence, most inviting study, and in most crying need of a service we do not yet understand how to render aright.”

Adolescence is, indeed, a fascinating period in life; it is the second birth of the child, and the morning hour of life when the whole world turns to gold.

THE YEARS OF ADOLESCENCE

The years of adolescence are also the best decade in life. “No age is so responsible to all the best and wisest adult endeavor. In no psychic soil, too, does seed, bad as well as good, strike such deep root, grow so rankly, or bear fruit so quickly or so surely.”

Adolescence is likewise the most critical period in life. It is the time when the child discovers the other sex, and passes through the fire and water of temptation. The years between fourteen and sixteen are the most dangerous in a boy’s life, and most boys that go wrong do so between nine and sixteen.

Every step of  the upward way is strewn with wreckage of body, mind, and morals. “There is not only arrest, but perversion, at every stage, and hoodlumism, juvenile crime, and secret vice seem not only increasing, but develop in earlier years in every civilized land.”

The angels of heaven and the devils of hell wage a fierce war for the possession of the soul during these all-important years. Defeat or victory may eventually mean hell or heaven for the soul.

Alas, that the enemy gains the victory so often! The scandals in some public high schools are a sad story. But in our own high schools devoted Brothers and Sisters often fight a losing battle, and the moral lapses, mixed marriages, and apostasies among the graduates of Catholic secondary schools raise the heart-searching question: Have we done all in our power for the boys and girls during the most critical period of their lives?

Not only the soul but the body, too, passes through a crisis during this period. Adolescence is the time of rapid physical growth. The features begin to reveal the mental development; there is more expression in the face; the eye is more eloquent; and the forehead begins to shape what Byron calls “the dome of thought, the palace of the soul.”

There is deep thought in Riickert’s lines on the forehead of the adolescent:

But now I saw above the eyes

The columns, bows and towers rise;

And ‘neath a roof of golden locks

The structure slowly vaults and rocks;

High swings the arch, far-flung and free—

God’s blessing on this building be!—

A mind of man thus rears a dome

To make therein its lifelong home.

Many mistakes are made by teachers because of their ignorance of the changes occurring both in the body and the mind of the adolescent. Honest teachers will admit that the period of adolescence is the most mysterious in life.

If childhood is a riddle, then adolescence is a Chinese puzzle and invites every new generation of educationists to attempt a solution.

There is a wall around Boyville and Girldom, and the gate is closed to all adults. Novelists and play-wrights, philosophers and psychologists have tried to break through the wall, but the sincere investigator must confess that the period remains full of mysteries.

Catholic scholars in this country have kept strangely aloof from the subject. We hope the day is not far distant when some Catholic educator will have the courage to record for what he and his brothers and sisters in the profession have gathered from intimate contact with the boy and girl.

But until that day arrives we must rely upon our limited experience or go to foreign Catholic writers or to Protestants and pagans (ancient and modern) to get a glimpse into the mysterious country.

GLIMPSE INTO A MYSTERIOUS COUNTRY

Horace’s characterization of the adolescent is brief but to the point: the beardless youth delights in horses and dogs and the verdure of the Campus Martius; he is pliable as wax to the bent of vice, rude to advisers, a slow provider of useful things, wasteful of his money, high-spirited, amorous, and hasty in deserting the objects of his passion.

Aristotle has given the best ancient characterization of adolescence. He speaks of the strong sex instinct of adolescents., their fickleness, love of honor, sympathy, charity, hope, bashfulness, valor, high aspiration, omniscience, cocksureness, fondness for extremes, and  love of laughter.

G. Stanley Hall says of adolescence and its modern environment:

“Modern life is hard, and in many respects increasingly so, on youth. Home, school, church, fail to recognize its nature and its needs and, perhaps, most of all, its perils . . . There are new repulsions felt toward home and school, and truancy and runaways abound.

The social instincts undergo sudden unfoldment and the new life of love awakens. It is the age of sentiment and of religion, of rapid fluctuations of mood, and the world seems strange and new.

Interest in adult life and in vocations develops. Youth awakens to a new world and understands neither it nor himself. The whole future of life depends on how the new powers now given suddenly and in profusion are husbanded and directed. Character and personality are taking form, but everything is plastic.

Self-feeling and ambition are increased, and every trait and faculty is liable to exaggeration and excess. It is all a marvelous new birth, and those who believe that nothing is so worthy of love, reverence, and service as the body and soul of youth, and who hold that the best test of every human institution is how much it contributes to bring youth to the ever fullest possible development,  may well review themselves and the civilization in which we live, to see how far it satisfies this supreme test.”

From the plays of Shakespeare we may select some thirty characters as typical adolescents. Booth Tarkington has given us an amusing picture of adolescence in Seventeen. His hero finds it unendurable not to seem perfect in all externals. Yet while William Sylvanus Baxter would strut about as a full-grown man, the child that he still is betrays him while he would play the other role.

He is still fond of green apples, and his steps often wander to the candy store, the soda water fountain, and the ice cream parlor. Yet he resents it when his elders would treat him as a little boy.

This trait is reminiscent of the complaint lodged by A. C. Benson in The Schoolmaster against the children’s hymns he was compelled to sing in his boyhood days:

“I did not like to sing ‘We are but children weak,’ because I did not feel weak, and I did not wish to be reminded that I was; still more offensive was being made to sing about ‘my little hands.’

I did not think them little, and did not see why they should be made the subject of oral remarks. Such hymns are more force pleasure of elder people, who are alarmed by the sight of innocence and weakness asserting their own claims.

But the boy delights to feel himself a pilgrim, a soldier, a hero; and he should be made to feel that his part in the battle is as important as that of his elders.”

MANHOOD AND LIBERTY

The consciousness of incipient manhood and womanhood is the outstanding feature of adolescence. The adolescent feels that his childhood days are past. He feels himself at home among adults, and resents being treated as a child.

He worships the teacher who recognizes his manhood. He approves heartily of the principle that baby-methods must give way to man-methods.

Feeling himself a man, the adolescent is bent on asserting his manhood. He is according to the expressive phrase of Vives, like an unbroken horse that would get rid of both rider and bridle.

His idol is personal liberty, But he has an erroneous conception of liberty. What he craves is license: but it would be disastrous to indulge his wishes:

Give a boy an inch and he’ll take an ell;

Give him a horse and he’ll ride him to hell.

One of the principal duties of the teacher of adolescents is to bring home to his pupils the idea of true liberty. The adolescent must learn that liberty consists in freeing ourselves from the tyranny of our passions and the influence of bad environment and evil companions.

The teacher may appropriately quote to his adolescent boys the lines from Shakespeare:

Brave conquers-for so you are

That war against your own affections

And the huge army of the worlds desires.

The adolescent must learn to appreciate the liberty of the children of God. Hence he must be taught to stand on his own feet, to recognize no authority except out of his own conscience and the representatives of God.

He must be trained to brave the cheers of the crowd, to be not only a man in the world but a man against the world. Let him remember the story of the father and son and their mule. Do what they would, the people had something to criticize.

True respect comes only to those who stand on their own feet, heedless of the jibes of the rabble. If the adolescent is afraid to act on principle, if he must always do as the rest do, he may as well wear a button with the text, “Smith and Company,“ for he is not an individual person, but merely a member of the gang.

No matter how lowly the duty let him perform it proudly. When carrying a basket for his mother or sister, he should carry it proudly because it is an honor to do one’s duty well. If we make our boys think right about liberty, we shall make it hard for them to do wrong.

Still, it is not enough to make the boys think right. They must be given an opportunity to do right, i.e., to submit to legitimate authority.

The teacher will find that she need but assert her authority in the proper way to obtain cheerful obedience from all who have gotten right ideas about authority in liberty.

There is much lamenting about the lack of obedience in American homes and schools. There is, however, just as much obedience as ever in America, only now the parents and teachers obey the children.

Too many teachers coquet with the likes and dislikes of their pupils, and naturally such teachers cannot teach duty or the spirit of obedience.

Where there is energy to command well enough, obedience never fails.

There are a thousand books on the duty of obedience, but very few that teach the fine art of how to enjoin the obedience properly.

Let the teacher appeal to the manhood of the adolescent, his sense of duty and honor; let her demand obedience in no uncertain terms; let her make it plain to her pupils that she will insist on submission; and her pupils will comply with her every demand. Let the teachers first lesson be obedience, and the second maybe whatever she will.

The teacher’s personality plays an important role in this respect. The adolescent boy and girl are hero worshipers and hungry for ideals. If the teacher represents their ideal of what a teacher ought to be, they will respond to the teacher’s efforts. But the teacher must herself have confidence in her own willpower if she would hope to control the wills of her pupils.

She must be conscious that the will is our highest and most perfect faculty; the best thing we have, our royal faculty, and the most effective weapon that we wield.

If the teacher has confidence in the untold possibilities of the will, she may hope to arouse in her pupils a deep interest in the training of their will.

For herself she will find helpful information in Father Barrett’s Strength of Will, and her pupils will find inspiration in the same writer’s The Will to Win.

Undoubtedly youth is a most beautiful thing of itself. But, if you have in this tender flower, the shining whiteness of Christian purity, then you have human beauty displayed as something noble and exalted, attracting the admiration and imitation of those who see it. – Pope Pius XII

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Two Titles mentioned in the article by Father Barrett:


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Religion and Will-Training

Strength of Will by Rev. Edward John Boyd Barrett, 1915, Nihil Obstat, Imprimatur

The only will-training which the plain man undergoes is the will-training which the practice of religion affords. This is, of course, a very variable quantity. Nevertheless, in the case of a man who faithfully adheres to his religious duties it is not inconsiderable. It will be our duty now, as far as possible, to estimate its nature and extent.

In Catholicism, for it is the religion we contemplate, there are many factors which tell for the education and improvement of the will. There is, first of all, the earnest striving towards the Summum Bonum, towards God, which is the central fact of religion, and the great, supreme work of the will.

There is next, the principle of asceticism, via., that given a good intention in a moral act, the more strongly and whole-heartedly we will, the more value the act will have—for willing, as we know, can be more or less intense.

There is, thirdly, the discipline of regularity and fidelity in religious exercises; and, lastly, the practice of internal and external mortification, which is boldly and uncompromisingly insisted upon by the Church—”unless you do penance you shall all perish.” Two principles on which Catholic asceticism to a great extent reposes have close reference to the will.

(1) In acts of worship the most important element, the element whereby we merit, is will and intention.

(2) In attaining virtue and self-perfection, our chief aim should be to go against ourselves, that is, to utilize our will in overcoming passion. The Catholic religion calls for great regularity in worship. There are yearly, and weekly, and daily duties. There are vigils of feasts and long periods, Lent and Advent, to be kept in the spirit of penance. There are duties, hard and severe for the human heart, to be undergone.

Confession, and fasting, and weekly Mass. In all things the spirit of order prevails–even in the smallest details. How and when to use Holy Water, how and when to recite the Office—in all particulars there is perfect method. The discipline of the whole system is faultless.

There is no disorder, no uncertainty. Nothing is left to chance. The will submits to rule, and in embracing religion it embraces order and regularity. It seeks to form for itself good habits, and finds therein the foundation of virtue.

It finds, in fact, that in practicing virtue it is learning to will well, and that in willing well it is practicing virtue. As we shall see later on, one of the best exercises for the will is to put before itself a clear, well-defined task which is not too difficult and to set itself in all earnestness to accomplish it. Now, this is precisely the kind of exercise that religion affords the will.

Let the task be to attend Mass next Sunday, or to fast next Friday, or to make restitution on such a date for something stolen. In each case the duty is clear and well-defined. Seriousness and earnestness in the accomplishment of the duty are in each case evoked by the consideration of the moral gravity of neglecting it.

The will has to brace itself up, to face the task bravely, and to fulfil it completely. An effort is called for, and that effort is good for the will.

But further than this, religion improves the will by calling for reiterated efforts. An isolated effort is of little significance in will-education, whereas regularly repeated efforts mean very much.

Now religion calls for the methodical expenditure of effort. Let us take the simple case of morning prayers. It is not enough to say them occasionally or fairly often. We are asked to say them every morning. That is, we are asked, every morning, to make an effort.

So it is for nearly all the duties of religion. They recur. They demand reiterated efforts. The will is not suffered to lie fallow. It is kept constantly at work. No doubt, habit smoothes away the harsh shock of effort, and automatism comes to our help, but nevertheless there is always the fundamental necessity of making efforts.

One of the points in which religion does most for the will is its regard to resolutions. To make and keep a good resolution is a power that every faithful Catholic has to acquire.

Now to resolve is an act of the will. It means that the will chooses a bonum, an end or object, and aims at its acquisition. It wills, seeks, strives for, and desires that bonum with more or less intensity.

Now, as our whole moral good frequently depends on the making and keeping of a good resolution, the Catholic Church has taught us through her ascetic writers how to do so. Further, she aids us in every way to make and keep good resolutions, thus doing an inestimable work for the education of the will.

It may perhaps be well to dwell on this point, so as to bring out clearly the part of religion in will-training. Catholic ascetics teach us, in this matter, first of all to have a clear and definite view of the object we propose to ourselves—let us suppose that it is to overcome the passion of anger.

Now the resolution “not to give way to anger” would be far too broad and too great. Applying the principle, “divide et impera,” we con-tent ourselves with resolving “not to give way to external manifestations of anger.” But here again, our resolution is too broad and too great.

We again apply the principle, “divide et impera,” and resolve “not to give way to angry retorts.” This resolution is pointed, definite and intelligible—it means that cross and peevish remarks must not occur.

A time limit may now be added in order to make the resolution still more well-defined. “Until the last day of this month I will not make an angry retort.”

Possibly, it might be advisable to limit this resolution still more, by conditions of place or circumstance, adding “in such a place or to such a person, or during such a ceremony,” but we shall suppose that to be unnecessary.

The resolution being now well formulated, the task of making it begins. Merely to say it over or to promise it in a feeble way is absolutely useless. The whole will, with the whole force and energy of the will, must be brought into it.

Not only that, but the whole living strengths of the will must be literally hurled into it, not once or twice, but again and again each day, right up to the very last day of the month. The resolution must be meant.

We must be able to say, “Yes! before God, I mean that! I mean it as intensely and really as I can ever mean anything! I will keep that resolution. I know I can and will keep it because I mean it. Further, I will take every precaution to keep it alive and vigorous within me by re-making it again and again.”

Needless to say such resolutions should not be lightly made, nor should they be trifled with. In them the credit of the will is at stake. It is a serious thing to make a serious resolution, and it is a bad thing to break one, bad for the will and bad for self-respect.

The early verbalizing, the magic and romantic lyricism of love letters, and long, late-night telephone conversations — all of these are left behind. Even the constant repetition of the words of love finds husband and wife admitting to each other that words do not express what they wish them to express. Thus, verbal symbols give way to a thousand variations of concrete symbols: a surprise gift, a note on the refrigerator, an evening planned totally for the other — always designed to unlock in the other that secret closet of joy. In creating their masterpiece, truly “their life’s work”, husband and wife each look to the other’s needs. -Father of the Family, Clayton Barbeau https://amzn.to/2tnTeJO (afflink)

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With his facile pen and from the wealth of his nation-wide experience, the well-known author treats anything and everything that might be included under the heading of home education: the pre-marriage training of prospective parents, the problems of the pre-school days down through the years of adolescence. No topic is neglected. “What is most praiseworthy is Fr. Lord’s insistence throughout that no educational agency can supplant the work that must be done by parents.” – Felix M. Kirsch, O.F.M.

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“The wise mother, having an eye to the future, will at once seek to initiate her daughter into the mysteries of housekeeping. Most young girls are interested in domestic affairs, and are never happier than when allowed to have their finger in the domestic pie; but in this as in other things a thorough grounding is the most satisfactory.” -Annie S. Swan, Courtship and Marriage And the Gentle Art of Home-Making, 1894

 

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Stuff ‘n’ June 2021 Gallery

A fun post!

Some recent videos Gin and I had fun making….

My daughter, Gin, gives a little tour of her son’s shop that he built.

Gin‘s beginnings of making a vintage dress out of a curtain. (Part one)

Gin gives us a brief peek into her crafty business of making a vintage dress out of a curtain. (Part Two)

Just a little tour of Gin‘s world on a Monday morning in spring time 2021.

A tour of our spring flowers at the beginning of their growth, the beautiful rock garden handiwork and our two grottoes. 🌺💐🌸🌷
“Where flowers, these emblems of purity are found, you may rest assured that they represent a hope, and speak of a goodness of heart not to be found where they are absent.” -Fr. Lasance
“I have always noticed that wherever you find flowers, no matter whether in a garret or in a palace, it is a pretty sure sign that there is an inner refinement of which the world is not cognizant. I have seen flowers cultivated and cherished by some of the lowest and poorest of people. Where these emblems of purity are found, you may rest assured that they represent a hope, and speak of a goodness of heart not to be found where they are absent.” -Fr. Lasance, My Prayer Book

Welcome to my June Gallery of…Home

What do you think makes a beautiful and happy home? How important is this?

Having a happy home is crucial to the spreading of our Faith. To whom do we want to spread our faith? First of all, to our children. They need to see the deep and lasting beauty of our faith shining forth in our everyday lives, making our home beautiful and happy.

Our faith is oftentimes an unspoken reality, the undercurrent in the everyday bubbling brook, that flows into every facet of our lives.

This happiness does not have to be unrealistic. Life is what it is and there are many days where the smiles don’t come as easy and nerves are rawer because of whatever is upsetting the apple cart at the time. These are opportunities too.

A good priest said that if our kids see ONLY that life is perfect at home, if they grow  up wearing rose-colored glasses all the time, they are going to get quite a jolt when they enter into their own vocation and it is less than perfect…and it will be. So it is good that the kids see reality, too.

That being said, we need to create a home that is joyful and lovely, in amongst the “real”-ness.

Let us live more for our homes. Let us love one another more. Let us cease to complain, criticize, and contradict each other. Let us be more patient with each other’s faults. Let us not keep back the warm, loving words that lie in our hearts, until it is too late for them to give comfort. Soon separations will come. One of every wedded pair will stand by the other’s coffin and grave. Then every bitter word spoken, and every neglect of love’s duty, will be as a thorn in the heart. -J.R. Miller, early 1900’s

Click on the first picture to view the gallery…. (Thank you to Henry Toenjes for permission to use some of his Pilgrimage photos.)

How To Profit From Our Defects

from the Catholic Family Magazine, Australia

– Hello Father. Sorry for being so late but I had to wait for the babysitter to come so that I could leave the house. I am glad to be able to come tonight for our little talk.

– Well, the subject I want to talk to you about is one of the most important in the spiritual life. It is how we can and even should profit from our faults. I believe that a good understanding of this question is a tremendous help in order to maintain peace of soul and make progress in union with God.

– But, Father I thought that our faults were an obstacle on the way to perfection. What kind of profit can I draw from my weakness which causes me to fall everyday into so many sins of impatience? What sort of advantage can I obtain from my negligence which causes me to miss so many opportunities of little sacrifices?

Let me ask you one question: Have you made up your mind never to offend God deliberately? Are you sincerely seeking to obey His will in fulfilling your vocation of wife and mother?

If the answer is yes, then your faults should not be a source of sadness but an occasion to practice humility. St Theresa of the Child Jesus used to say: “I do not grieve in seeing that I am weakness itself. On the contrary, it is in this that I glory, and I expect each day to discover in myself new imperfections.”

She also wrote ” What does it matter to me to fall each moment? By that I feel my weakness and therein I find great profit.  My God, you see what I can do if You do not carry me in your arms!”

We have to realize that everything is either willed or permitted by God. In the designs of His providence, even our faults ought to serve for our sanctification. Alas, many good souls do not know how to cope with their defects. They are quickly discouraged at the sight of their misery, instead of making an act of humility.

St Paul says: “All things work together for the good of them that love God,” Yes, everything and St Augustine adds “even our sins”.

– I must admit, Father, that I often get frustrated at myself. I make good resolutions, and I cannot seem to be able to keep them! The other day I was pretty happy because I had found the time for a little bit of spiritual reading. I had also succeeded in remaining in the presence of God for most of the day.

And then in the evening, the twins started to fight in their room and I completely lost my temper with them. I yelled and screamed so loud that the neighbors next door must have heard me!

After this I felt so ashamed and angry with myself that I got depressed. When my husband came home, I am afraid he did not feel like talking to me since he saw that I was in a bad mood.

– Yes this is a good example of how the bad use we make of our faults does more damage to us than our faults themselves. Alas, it is our self-love which causes us to act this way.

I have myself the same problem. We priests also have to overcome our pride. You see, we should not get upset when we fall! I think we should rather be surprised that we do not fall more often.

We should also thank God for all the faults from which He preserves us. Let us not become troubled and agitated when we see ourselves so imperfect. We should always keep our peace of soul.

When we happen to commit a fault we should turn to God with humility and ask His forgiveness. And then we must never think about the fault again, until the time comes to mention it in confession.

– So you think it may be pride, Father, when I get discouraged at the sight of how little progress I make in the spiritual life?

– Yes, it is possible that your self-love causes you to desire to be exempt from imperfections and so you get upset when you realize that you are still committing many little faults every day.

God wants us to be humble. He needs this disposition in our souls in order to communicate to us His grace. This is why He often allows us to plagued with defects.

I think that, if we were to become perfect all of a sudden, it would make us very proud and it would cause our ruin.

God is a great and wise Master. Let Him do as He likes. He will not fail in His work of the sanctification of your soul. We should resolve never to willfully do anything that displeases Him.

But if, despite our goodwill, we fall into faults, let us rejoice in the humiliation into which these faults throw us. Once again, we should profit from our faults in order to destroy our self-complacency and give glory to our dear God.

– So Father, you think that my defects do not offend Our Lord? It really bothers me sometimes when I come to confession and I have the same faults to confess every month!

– I know your soul and I think that many of your faults are not deliberate. Let me take two examples. First Mrs. So-and-So is a real gossip and in the past when both of you were on the phone, you talked about your neighbors in an unkind way. So you perfectly know that she is an occasion of sin.

If one day you go ahead and call her on the phone and indulge in an uncharitable conversation, there is no doubt that you have committed a venial sin and hurt the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Second, Mrs. Such-and-Such is your good friend and one day she comes to visit you. During the conversation you both tell bits of news that you have learned about people (without previous malicious intention).

After she has left you realize that some of the things you revealed to her were unnecessary and may have caused such a person to decrease in her esteem. Well, it was not a deliberate sin on your part, but a fault of weakness.

Tell God that you are sorry and your act of humility will make up for whatever negligence there may have been and give glory to Him.

– Well, Father, I will follow your advice and ask Our Lord to give me humility of heart. if I see some good in me, I know it is from God and I will thank Him for it. If I see some evil, I know it is from me. I will not get discouraged but I will profit by it so as to humble myself.

– Good! And always remember what I told you before about the way of spiritual childhood. St Theresa teaches us to make ourselves as small as we can in our own eyes.

Look at little children. They often fall on the ground. But they do not hurt themselves because, so to speak, they never fall from any great height.

So also little souls. Their wounds are never very serious and they are healed as soon as they are wounded. Far from being a hindrance in the way of perfection, the experience of their faults makes them humble and is therefore an advantage.

St. Paul said “It is my weakness that makes all my strength.” Let us pray to God so that we may receive the grace of being like little children in His sight, humble and confident.

God bless you.

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The winner will receive this lovely package…

I will announce the winner next Tuesday, June 22nd! (Moving it to WEDS. JUNE 23RD as I have a GALLERY going up tomorrow! SO YOU HAVE AN EXTRA DAY TO ENTER! 🙂  )

“The desired wife has developed her personality before marriage and continues that development during marriage. By personality here I mean beauty of soul and all those qualities and accomplishments which go to make a person interesting and sought after. Personality will carry a girl a great deal further in life than physical beauty. In fact, without personality, beauty often tires one in married life. Some girls are born with physical beauty. None are born with personality. They must develop and cultivate it all the days of their lives.” – Fr. Leo Kinsella, The Wife Desired, 1950’s https://amzn.to/2w4nX08 (afflink)

Review: Catholic Mother Goose is a ‘one of a kind’ treasure for young and old alike! Little minds will be captivated by the beautifully colored and illustrated pages. Throughout the nursery rhymes, children will learn the lessons of kindness, unselfishness, the efficacy of suffering and the value of prayer! They will become more familiar with the lives of the Saints, St. Therese, St. Francis, etc. and their great love for Jesus and Mary. These beautifully written poems will plant the seed for good literature and a love for reading for years to come. This is how we make our Catholic faith and culture come alive for our children! This book is a must!

Catholic mothers everywhere are looking for innovative ways to teach their children the basic truths of our Faith. There is so much out there to offer to those mothers on this journey…..so much in the way of the latest software, latest videos, etc.
Maybe we need to get back to basics!? …The basics of forming those young minds with tools that our grandmothers and those before them used.
Here is a book that fulfills that need…The Catholic Mother Goose, Volume Two! It is a 140 page fun-packed book, vibrantly full-color, filled with brand-new nursery rhymes that have a touch of our Catholic Faith peeking through the rhythmic lines.
My Catholic Mother Goose Volume One has touched many lives and now you can purchase Volume Two that will have a new and lasting impact! Available here.
Catholic Mother Goose Volumes One and Two available here.

 

A book of your favorite litanies….

Chosen by God for the incomparable vocation of spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ; St. Joseph received magnificent divine graces and favors not granted even to the Old Testament Patriarchs. Known as the most humble of men; St. Joseph received from Almighty God the authority to command both Our Lady and the Son of God Himself; and in Heaven he continues to have great intercessory power with God.
The Divine Favors Granted to St. Joseph shows how this greatest of the Patriarchs is the patron of all Christians and how wonderfully he answers prayers; plus; it gives many of the ways of honoring him and many prayers to request his intercession. One of the finest books on St. Joseph; it will surely inspire the reader with a profound devotion to this great “Patron of the Universal Church.” Impr. 176 pgs;

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To the Eucharist, Then, We Should Go!

From Jesus, Our Eucharistic Love

To the Eucharist, then, we should go. To Jesus we should turn— to Jesus, who wishes to make Himself ours in order to make us His by rendering us “Godlike.”

“O Jesus, Food of strong souls,” St. Gemma Galgani used to say, “strengthen me, purify me, make me godlike.”

Let us receive the Eucharist with a pure and ardent heart. That is what the saints have done. It should never be too much trouble for us to grow familiar with this unspeakable Mystery.

Meditation, study and reflection on the Eucharist should have an important place each day on our timetable. It will be the time of our day richest in blessings. It will do good to our soul and body.

One reads in the life of St. Pius X that one day, when he was the parish priest of Salzano, he went on a visit to a sick altar boy. At that very moment the doctor also arrived and asked the sick boy how he was.

The boy answered that on that day he was feeling better because he had been able to give a little instruction on the Eucharist to a few other boys.

At this response the doctor exclaimed with overtones of ridicule, “Oh! That’s nice. During my medical studies I never heard that a little Christian teaching could have such effects.”

At this sour remark, the priest immediately intervened in defense of the youth and said to the doctor, “Oh, we see very well the effects of your science, doctor, and even a nearsighted person would see them well, too, because the cemetery is full of them…. But Christian doctrine fills up a place which only those who are intellectually shortsighted would not be able to see: Heaven!”

The Eucharist is the heavenly “leaven” (Mt. 13: 33) which is capable of fermenting, in the human nature of every person, all spiritual and temporal goods.

It is so great a good Itself that one cannot desire anything else greater. What, in fact, could one desire more, when within himself he has Jesus, living and real, the God-made-man, the Word made flesh and blood for our salvation and happiness?

On his deathbed St. Peter Julian Eymard gave this excellent reply to a religious who requested a final point for reflection: “I have nothing more to tell you. You already have the Eucharist. What more do you want?”

Knowing, Loving, Living The Eucharist

St. Peter Julian Eymard rightly said that “when a spark of the Eucharist is placed in a soul, a divine germ of life and of all the virtues is cast into that heart. This germ is sufficient of itself, so to say [to do much].”

In order to explore at least some of the immense riches stored up in the Mystery of the Eucharist, let us engage in a constant, unified exercise employing mind, heart and will.

An Exercise of the Mind

First, with the mind one meditates in an attentive, orderly way on the Eucharist. This may be done with books which lead us to personally uncover and deeply ponder this Mystery of Love.

A simple little work rich in content is St. Alphonsus M. de’ Liguori’s Visits to the Blessed Sacrament and to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In addition, there are the two precious little works by St. Peter Julian Eymard entitled, The Real Presence and Holy Communion.

We should, above all, turn to the school of St. Peter Julian Eymard, who was unequalled as an Apostle of the Eucharist. His vocation and mission was to lead all Christians to the Eucharist, to such an extent that people finally called him “the Priest of the Blessed Sacrament!”

When he founded the Congregation of Priests of the Blessed Sacrament, he offered his life for the Eucharistic reign of Jesus. At that time he wrote these ardent words: “Here, dear Jesus, is my life. Behold me ready to eat stones and to die abandoned, just so that I may succeed in erecting a throne for Thee and giving Thee a family of friends, a nation of adorers.”

If we but knew the gift of a God who is Love and who gives Himself to us as a Gift full of Love!

“The Eucharist,” said St. Bernard, “is that Love which surpasses all loves in Heaven and on earth.”

And St. Thomas Aquinas wrote: “The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love: It signifies Love, It produces love.”

A concrete instance which rivets our attention on this Love is the Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano (in the province of Abruzzi, Italy). There one venerates a consecrated Host which was transformed into living Flesh and which has been preserved in this state for more than a thousand years.

The most recent chemical analyses of a particle of this Host verified the fact: it is indeed a piece of flesh which is still living and which is a part of a human heart.

The Eucharist is indeed all one Heart!

One day an Arabian prince, Abd-ed-Kader, while passing through a street of Marseille with a French official, saw a priest who was carrying Holy Viaticum to a dying man. The French official stopped, uncovered his head, and knelt.

His friend asked him the reason for this gesture. “I adore my God, whom the priest is carrying to a sick person,” replied the good official.

“How is it possible,” the prince said, “for you to believe that God who is so great, makes Himself so little and lets Himself go even to the homes of the poor? We Mohammedans have a much higher idea of God.”

The official answered, “It is because you have only an idea of the greatness of God; but you do not know His Love.”

That is the answer. In confirmation of this, St. Peter Eymard declares: “The Eucharist is the supreme proof of the love of Jesus. After this, there is nothing more but Heaven itself.”

Yet, how many of us Christians do not know the vast extent of the love contained in the Eucharist!

“Simplicity of soul is one of the prerequisites of sanctity, and it’s one of the things our children already possess. We must be very careful not to contribute to the great cluttering up. Our obligation as parents is heavy: we must raise children who are in love with God.” -Mary Reed Newland, How to Raise Good Catholic Children http://amzn.to/2t1mabR (afflink)

BOOK REVIEW!

If you have trouble reading saint books and find the story lines boring, you need to try these!

We love these books and have had them on our book shelves for years! They are very well-written and make the saints come alive!

Louis de Wohl has the amazing capacity to take historic Catholic figures and breathe life into them by creating a novel around what their life might have been like.

They are meant for high school and adult level. Some of the books could have a bit of adult content, for instance, St. Augustine’s life before conversion.M-EN10-9217948You can look for his books here and read more reviews:

The Quiet Light: A Novel About Saint Thomas Aquinas
The Joyful Beggar: St. Francis of Assisi
Lay Siege to Heaven
The Spear: A Novel of the Crucifixion
Citadel of God: A Novel About Saint Benedict
The Living Wood: Saint Helena and the Emperor Constantine

A review:

Louis de Wohl’s books are all spellbinding and captivating! He creates real-life, everyday events that could very well have happened in the lives of the actual historical figures he portrays. You get a biography that is painted in everyday, real-life events rather than just a chronology of facts, making the story all that easier to relate to for the reader.

Here is a peek into the author’s life. Louis de Wohl

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A Wise Woman’s Economy

From True Womanhood, Rev. Bernard O’Reilly, 1893

We must not, especially in an age which tends daily more and more to deny that man owes any account to God for the use of the wealth he chances to possess — whether that be inherited from his ancestors, or obtained by his own thrift and industry — be carried away by the torrent of error.

No matter whence derived, all that man has as well as all that he is belongs to God — his Creator and Lord and Judge; and to Him must he return to give an account of the use which he will have made of his being, his life, his time, his property.

Reason, even without the light of supernatural revelation, teaches this truth as fundamental and unquestionable.

The great and the rich will have to account for their stewardship, —for the uses to which they have put their time, their riches, their power, their influence, their opportunities, just as the laboring poor will have to account for their thrift, and the awful uses to which one may see, day by day, our hard-working heads of families put their earnings in drunkenness, gambling, and all manner of vice.

But, as we have said, it is the province of the housewife to be at home a wise steward in the use of her husband’s means, while his chief business is, outside of the home, to procure these means by honorable industry. Both are responsible to God.

The wife’s immediate responsibility however is toward her husband. She is his minister, his eye, his hand, his head and heart, in applying his wealth or the produce of his industry to the ends for which God wills it to be employed.

Of persons of royal, princely, or noble rank, we do not think it necessary to treat in this place. We speak of wealth wheresoever it exists, and of the duties and responsibilities of the wife in its home-uses.

Hers should be a wise economy. Wisdom consists in a clear perception of the ends or uses for which money is to serve, and in the careful adaptation of one’s means to one’s expenditure.

You have so much and no more to spend each week, or each month, or each year; you have so many wants to provide for: let your wisdom be proved by always restraining your outlay so as to have a little balance left in your favor.

We know of a wife,—a young wife too,—who after her bridals was made the mistress of a luxurious home, in which her fond husband allowed her unlimited control. They were more than wealthy, and his business relations and prospects were such as to promise certain and steady increase for the future.

Still the young wife did not allow herself to be lavish or extravagant. She provided generously for the comforts of her home, for the happiness of her servants, for the duties of a generous hospitality; she had an open hand for all charities and good works.

But she was also, young as she was, mindful of the future; and this wise forethought is eminently the characteristic of women.

Without ever whispering a word of her purpose to her husband, she resolved from the beginning of their housekeeping that she would lay by in a safe bank her weekly economies.

The husband, in all likelihood, would have deemed this saving an ill omen, pointing to future calamity. It was, however, only the prophetic instinct of the wise woman, who, in the heat of summer and the overflowing plenty of autumn, looked forward to “the cold of snow,” and made store for the need and warmth and comfort of her household.

The “calamity” came after a good many years ; it came by a fatal chain of circumstances in which the misfortunes or dishonesty of others brought ruin on the upright and prudent and undeserving.

One day the husband came home with heavy heart, and tried in vain to hide his care from the penetrating eyes of love. He had to break to his wife the dreadful news of their utter ruin.

She listened unmoved to his story: “All is not lost, my dear husband,” she said; “I have been long preparing for this. If you will go to such a bank, you will find enough laid up there to secure us either against want or poverty.”

In order to secure this wise and provident economy, even in the midst of wealth, two extremes must be avoided, parsimony, which destroys domestic comfort and makes the mistress of the proudest house despicable in the eyes of her cook, her butcher, and her grocer,—and waste or extravagance, which is ruinous to the largest fortunes and most criminal in the sight of God.

“Waste not—want not,” used to be inscribed on the huge bread-platters of our fathers, both in the servants’ hall and the family dining-room.

“Waste not—want not,” ought to be the rule of every housewife in all departments of household economy.

Waste is always a sin against God, against your husband and children, as well as against the poor, who have a right to what is thus thrown away: and, forget it not,—waste never fails to lead to want, as surely as stripping a tree of its bark is followed by its pining away and withering.

Another rule, which a wise woman will never violate, is to tell her husband when she exceeds her means or allowance.

It is fatal concealment to allow debts to accumulate without one’s husband’s knowledge; it tempts the woman weak enough to do so to have recourse to most unworthy and most dangerous expedients, which are sure to be known in the end, and to lower the culprit or ruin her forever in her husband’s esteem.

The equivocations and the downright falsehoods which are often used as means of concealment, cannot but be considered by every right-minded man as a greater calamity than the accumulation of the largest debt or the loss of an entire fortune.

In this respect, as indeed in every other, no concealment will be found to be the wife’s only true policy; and to secure this policy of no concealment let her make it the study of her life to have nothing to conceal.

Click on this link to enter the Giveaway!

The winner will receive this lovely package…

I will announce the winner next Tuesday, June 22nd!

“Gardens are places of life, growth, rebirth. Working with plants and soil is a therapeutic experience to our stressed-out lives. You don’t have to have acres of land or an emerald thumb in order for gardening to be part of your life. Your garden can flourish in whatever space and time you have to give it.” – Emilie Barnes, Simple Secrets to a Beautiful Home http://amzn.to/2sdMPOn (afflink)

Package Special! The Catholic Boy’s and Girl’s Traditional 30-Day Journals! Let’s keep our youth engaged in the Faith! Let’s teach them how to be organized, how to prioritize, how to keep on top of, first, the Spiritual things in their lives, and then the other daily duties that God requires of them… Available here.

SIn this book, Kennedy Hall explores the traditional wisdom of the Catholic Church on all things pertaining to masculinity. It is no secret that in our day it is hard to define what a man truly is, let alone how he should act. With all the modern obstacles that work against forming virtuous men, Kennedy Hall provides a solution with this book. Terror of Demons: Reclaiming Traditional Catholic Masculinity will help men of all ages and stages in life to develop heroic masculine virtue, something greatly needed in our time.

 

Here’s the award-winning classic that for over forty years has shown Christian men how to be the loving husbands and gentle fathers that Christ calls them to be.

Rooted firmly in Scripture, these pages call on husbands to stop thinking of themselves simply as bosses and breadwinners. Rather, says author Clayton Barbeau, husbands should see themselves as co-creators with God, imitators of Christ’s love for His people, high priests in the domestic Church, teachers of their children, witnesses to society, providers of spiritual and material goods, and models of holiness.

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Friendly Argument

From Christ in the Home, Fr. Raoul Plus, S.J., 1950’s

Just as bickering, sulking, and domineering opposition should be avoided by husbands and wives, so free and friendly discussions should be encouraged as an aid to bind their souls in a closer union.

Strife and rivalry motivated by self-love is one thing, but sane and cordial disagreement or exchange of ideas is quite another.

It is from the clash of ideas that light shines forth. And also warmth.

Writing to a young married couple, Bishop Dupanloup said to them: “You were both astonished the first time I recommended argument to you–friendly argument–and still more astonished when I answered your statement, “we shall never argue,” with the comment “So much the worse for you!”

“The truth is that in a society so intimate, so constant as marriage, if you do not feel free to discuss and even to engage in friendly argument, it is evidence of constraint between you; there is something which is preventing the free expansion of your souls.

“These little disagreements founded primarily on the affectionate observation of your mutual failings will not alter the peace of your home in the least; on the contrary, I believe that they will establish in it a more profound peace and more intimate union, because they will assure both of you of your reciprocal confidence.”

Actually, as it is easy to see, the bishop was advising his spiritual children not so much to argue as to discuss.

And if one insists on using the word “argument” it must be modified by the word “friendly.”

Then let them go to it! Saint Louis was conversing one day with Queen Marguerite.

She was complaining that the king did not have enough pomp in court functions and that he himself did not dress with the magnificence befitting official ceremonies.

He thought, on his side, that the queen was taking some advantage of her position and that she gave way to excess in the richness of her dress.

“Would it really please you if I dressed more magnificently?” asked the king.

“Yes, I so wish you would.”

“Very well then, I shall do so, because the law of marriage urges the husband to try to please his wife.

But since this obligation is reciprocal, it is only right that you should conform to my desire.“

“And what is that?”

“That you get into the habit of dressing as simply as possible!”

Well done! In friendly arguments such as this, charity as well as finesse and courtesy scores its point. Don’t think you must always be right.

You ought to defend your point of view but you should not be hostile to the opposite viewpoint just because it’s the opposite viewpoint and before you ever begin to discuss.

Two minds are better than one–unless of course they’re two negatives. If the other person is right or it is better for the sake of peace to pull down your flag, then give in graciously and without bitterness.

Click on this link to enter the Giveaway!

The winner will receive this lovely package…

I will announce the winner next Tuesday, June 22nd!

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“It is the home that makes possible the growth of the child’s personality. With every waking moment the child becomes more conscious of itself, more ready to absorb the influence of those nearest to it. Its soul is, as it were, untouched soil which places no obstacles in the way of anything planted in it. How great then is the parents’ responsibility and their need of the graces of matrimony, to bring up their children in the fear and love of God.” -Dominican Sister, Australia, 1955 , Artist – Carl Larson https://www.pinterest.ie/weeze1954/artist-carl-larson/

Don’t miss an article! Sign up today to receive an email each time a Finer Femininity post is published! Let’s learn together how to live a joyful, feminine, Catholic life in an un-Catholic world! Follow the link.

Beautiful Wire Wrapped Rosary! Lovely, Durable… Each link is handmade and wrapped around itself to ensure quality. Available here.

Why do we wear our best clothes on Sunday? What was the Holy Ghost Hole in medieval churches? How did a Belgian nun originate the Feast of the Blessed Sacrament? Where did the Halloween mask and the jack-o’-lantern come from?

Learn the answer to these questions, as well as the history behind our traditional celebration of Thanksgiving, in this gem of a book by Father Weiser.

Celebrate the Faith with your kids all year round!

For over half a century, Catholic families have treasured the practical piety and homespun wisdom of Mary Reed Newland’s classic of domestic spirituality, The Year and Our Children. With this new edition, no longer will you have to search for worn, dusty copies to enjoy Newland’s faithful insights, gentle lessons, and delightful stories. They’re all here, and ready to be shared with your family or homeschooling group. Here, too, you ll find all the prayers, crafts, family activities, litanies, and recipes that will help make your children ever-mindful of the beautiful rhythm of the Church calendar.This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

A Podcast for Your Children/Summer Saints….Some Are Not!

Sorry, the title of this post in your email notifications says there is a winner…but…NOT YET!

Go to this link and enter the Giveaway!

The winner will receive this lovely package…

I will announce the winner next Tuesday, June 22nd!

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Here is a video for your children where I talk to them about the virtue of obedience….

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Summer Saints….and Some are Not

I was poking around Mary Reed Newland’s book, The Year and Our Children, to explore ways of celebrating our Catholic Saints and Feasts this summer and ran across the following ideas. I couldn’t keep it to myself so I am sharing it with you.

Make the liturgy come alive in your home! Don’t forget to use your holy water, wear your scapulars and say the rosary. Maybe say a part of the Divine Office with them each day. Read to them. Don’t get bogged down, but DO SOMETHING positive each day with your children in light of our Catholic Faith. It is a daily fight to keep ourselves and our children climbing UP the ladder! It is easy to slide down…..

Teach them to love the Faith, with all its solemnities, all its beauty!

Here is a “sweet” and simple way to celebrate the feasts of the saints coming up this summer….

vintage_christmas_girl_baking_cookies_print-r50ee568828614150874835fa3354c205_zkyul_8byvr_1024Apostle Cookies

Any good gingerbread cookie dough will do, and any good gingerbread-boy cookie cutter will make a gingerbread Apostle (or you may cut them freehand with a knife). The twist is in the decoration.

We decorated each one with his own symbols, tied a ribbon through a hole pierced (before baking) in the top of each cookie, served them on a tray, covered, with only the ribbons showing; you got your dessert by choosing a ribbon, finding the cookie, and identifying it.

This is an excellent way to learn all the Apostles. The combination of head and stomach is hard to beat. The frosting is a confectioner’s sugar recipe tinted with vegetable colors.

The symbols may be made with stiff frosting squirted through a decorator tube, if you have one, or may be cut from foil, paper, or made of any materials that suggest themselves.

Here is how we decorated the cookies.

St. Peter (June 29) Red frosting because he was a martyr.

Symbols: two keys, a cock crowing, an upside-down cross, a fish, a sword.

The keys remind us that Jesus gave him the keys of the Kingdom; the cock recalls his denial of our Lord; the cross tells that he is supposed to have been martyred head down; the fish – he was a fisher of men; the sword tells of his temper on the night he cut off Malchus’s ear.

Our Peter cut a silver-foil fish for this cookie and stuck it in the frosting. You could do the keys and sword of foil also, with the cross of melted chocolate. The cock can be drawn or cut from a picture and stuck on.

St. James the Great (July 25)

He is called great because he was the tall James. He was the son of Zebedee and the brother of St. John the Evangelist. Our Lord called these two the Sons of Thunder: partly, we are told, for their vehement defense of Christ and His teaching, and partly because cause they wanted Him to burn up the Samaritans inside their houses with fire from Heaven, like the three little pigs, because they wouldn’t welcome them into their village.

Our Lord rebuked them for it. He said that He came to give life, not destroy it – which teaches a good lesson in resisting the temptation to “get even.” This was certainly the opposite of the meekness He said would “inherit the earth.”
This James was the first Apostle to die for Christ, beheaded in Jerusalem by Herod Agrippa. His symbols – the pilgrim’s cloak, staff, hat, purse, and scallop shell (always the symbol of pilgrims) – signify that he went on long missionary journeys. A tiny shell stuck to the frosting on this cookie was the clue we used.

St. Bartholomew (August 24)

The mystery man. His name, Bar-Tolmai, indicates that he is the son of Tolmai.

He is an old friend of St. Philip and is often mentioned with him. It is supposed that he is the Nathanael to whom Philip made his announcement under the fig tree. Nathanael was skeptical that this Man was really the Messiah, and our Lord commended his skepticism because Israel was often thick with self-appointed messiahs.

“Behold a true Israelite, in whom there is no guile,” said our Lord, as Nathanael came toward Him down the road.

Then to Nathanael: “Before Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee!” Then didn’t Nathaniel believe! He lost his heart that moment. “Rabbi thou art the Son of God! Thou art King of Israel!”

St. Bartholomew’s symbols are about as grisly as you’ll find: flaying knives, a cross, an axe, and such, because his was a wild and bloody death; and then there is our pet symbol for him – a branch of the fig tree. Make this with melted chocolate and green candy leaves meant for cake-decorating.

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If I am not capable of great things, I will not become discouraged, but I will do the small things! Sometimes, because we are unable to do great things, heroic acts, we neglect the small things that are available to us and which are, moreover, so fruitful for our spiritual progress and are such a source of joy: “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful over a few things, I will now trust you with greater. Come and share your Master’s joy.” (Matthew 25:21) -Fr. Jacques Philippe, Searching For and Maintaining Peace https://amzn.to/2WcepLs (afflink)

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Make a statement with this lovely and graceful handcrafted “Holy Mother and Son ” apron….fully lined, lace overlay….made with care. Aprons tell a beautiful story…..a story of love and sacrifice….of baking bread and mopping floors, of planting seeds and household chores. Sadly, many women have tossed the aprons aside and donned their business attire. Wear your apron with joy….it is a symbol of Femininity….”Finer” Femininity! 🌺 💗

Available here.

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Compelling life story of Brother Joachim. If your looking for a book of inspiration to follow your calling read this one…

He was called the man of his age, the voice of his century. His influence towered above that of his contemporaries, and his sanctity moved God himself. Bernard of Clairvaux–who or what fashioned him to be suitable for his role of counseling Popes, healing schisms, battling errors and filling the world with holy religious and profound spiritual doctrine? Undoubtedly, Bernard is the product of God’s grace. This book is the fascinating account of a family that took seriously the challenge to follow Christ… and to overtake Him. With warmth and realism, Venerable Tescelin, Blesseds Alice, Guy, Gerard, Humbeline, Andrew, Bartholomew, Nivard and St. Bernard step off these pages with the engaging naturalness that atttacks imitation. Here is a book that makes centuries disappear, as each member of this unique family becomes an inspiration in our own quest of overtaking Christ.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

Lovely Quotes & A Giveaway!

Some lovely quotes for your day…. (AND A GIVEAWAY!)

Do not be deceived by beautiful sentiments and by appearances. You will never see any one become a saint who does not pray. -St. Peter Julian Eymard, Oil Painting by Frederick Daniel Hardy (1827-1911)

Punctuality exacts self-discipline and detachment; it often asks us to interrupt some interesting, pleasant work in order to give ourselves to another kind, perhaps less attractive or less important.
However, it would be a great mistake to esteem our duties and to dedicate ourselves to them according to the attraction we have for them or according to their more or less apparent importance.
All is important and beautiful when it is the expression of the will of God, and the soul who wishes to live in this hole he will every minute of the day, will never omit the slightest act prescribed by its rule of life. -Divine Intimacy

Forgive. “A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers.” ~ Ruth Bell Graham. This is one of the truest statements ever made. Decide you’re not only going to be his lover – you’re going to be his forgiver. Be quick to forgive and get good at it. You’ll probably have lots of opportunity to practice it. -Lisa Jacobson, 100 Ways to Love Your Husband https://amzn.to/2EkBO3F (afflink)

“A desire to be beautiful is not unwomanly. A woman who is not beautiful cannot properly fill her place. But, mark you, true beauty is not of the face, but of the soul. There is a beauty so deep and lasting that it will shine out of the homeliest face and make it comely. This is the beauty to be first sought and admired. It is a quality of the mind and heart and is manifested in word and deed.” – Beautiful Girlhood, Mabel Hale http://amzn.to/2pOKmtj (afflink) Illustration by http://www.genevievegodboutillustration.com/
🌸💞I want to be able to lay my head down at night knowing I have connected with those things that matter most…..
So that when my life is at its close it can be said, “You have run the race, you have fought the good fight.” and I will be remembered, not for what I have accomplished, but for HAVING LOVED WELL….. -Finer Femininity
“Be patient with everyone, but above all with yourself…do not be disheartened by your imperfections, but always rise up with fresh courage.”
Introduction the the Devout Life― St. Francis de Sales

No one likes to be taken for granted. In any human relationship a little sign of appreciation goes a long way. Life does not have to be a hard pull uphill all the time. To know that someone, especially the one we love, values our efforts sends us off with our heads in the clouds. The wife who is wise enough to show her husband appreciation for all his efforts will keep his heart fixed upon her. – The Wife Desired, Fr. Leo Kinsella http://amzn.to/2rtUpb9 (afflink)

“The Crucifix on the wall, the pictures of Our Lord and His Mother – the loveliest you can afford – the little shrine with lights and flowers – these unceasingly speak to your little ones of God’s love and His Beauty, preparing them for that friendship with God, that willing, personal submission to Him that is true freedom and happiness.” -Dominican Nun, Australia, 1954, Painting by Ferdinand Georg Waldmuller

She ought not to be ignorant of what used to be considered the chief, if not the only occupation for women,—she ought to be fit to keep house on the shortest notice. It is a woman’s heritage. -Gentle Art of Homemaking, Annie Swan https://amzn.to/2XhJsGS (afflink)

“I do not know any among the ordinary conditions of life as good and desirable as that of a life of service or of daily labor. A life of labor has always been considered, by spiritual persons, most favorable to the soul. To have nothing which we are obliged to do may seem very fine to our worldliness and love of ease, but it is most dangerous. You know the old saying: ‘The devil finds work enough for idle hands to do.’ It is most true. Idleness opens the door for the worst temptations.” –GUIDE for CATHOLIC YOUNG WOMEN by Rev. George Deshon, 1863

Painting by Sheri Dinardi

And Now….A Giveaway!

Today, I’d like to offer you a Summer Giveaway!!

The winner will receive this lovely package…

Just leave a comment here, and your name will be added! It is always great to hear from you. 🙂

I will announce the winner next Tuesday, June 22nd!

The Catholic Mother’s Maglet!

The following pages in this Maglet (magazine/booklet) is for you…to inspire you in your daily walk as a loving, strong, patient Catholic mother.As mothers we have an awesome responsibility, as one of the key people in our children’s lives, to help mold them into happy, well-adjusted, faith-filled adults. This Maglet is filled with unique articles and anecdotes to help you in this journey.It is unique because most of the articles are written by men and women (some priests and a Dominican nun) who have lived in an age where common sense was more of the norm. Their advice and experience are timeless and invaluable…

The Precious Blood and Mother Prayer Book!

This is a wonderful little prayer book that I have used all through my married life. The prayers are beautiful and the promises wonderful!

Here are titles of some of the prayers:

-Memorare to Jesus, Mary and Joseph

-Our Lady of this House

-Prayer for Choosing a State in Life

-Act of Consecration to the Precious Blood and the Blessed Virgin for Children

-Memorare to St. Joseph (and many other beautiful prayers to that Glorious Saint)

-A Prayer in time of Affliction, Wars, Pestilence, etc.

…….Beautiful Prayers to many Saints

….and many, many more. It is a small prayer book with around 150 pages. You will find it a superb companion to your prayer life.

Lovely Wire Wrapped Rosary Bracelet Set!

Take your rosary wherever you go with this one decade, one Our Father lovely and graceful rosary bracelet! Matching earrings are included.

 

 

Losing your peace of soul over the state of the world and the Church? Don’t! Consider the following books…..

We live in an age characterized by agitation and lack of peace. This tendency manifests itself in our spiritual as well as our secular life. In our search for God and holiness, in our service to our neighbor, a kind of restlessness and anxiety take the place of the confidence and peace which ought to be ours. What must we do to overcome the moments of fear and distress which assail us? How can we learn to place all our confidence in God and abandon ourselves into his loving care? This is what is taught in this simple, yet profound little treatise on peace of heart. Taking concrete examples from our everyday life, the author invites us to respond in a Gospel fashion to the upsetting situations we must all confront. Since peace of heart is a pure gift of God, it is something we should seek, pursue and ask him for without cease. This book is here to help us in that pursuit.

Reverend Irala here addresses ways to promote mental and emotional well-being to help increase one’s health, efficiency and happiness. He speaks on topics such as how to rest, think, use the will, control feelings, train the sexual instinct, be happy, and choose an ideal. Included are also many practical instructions on dealing with mental struggles of all kinds. This book is most useful in our present times of worldly confusion.

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