Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Spring 2015

From the moment we are baptized until we possess the beatific vision, we are all Unfinished Christians.  And so, before we pass from the vale of tears, it is our duty to cooperate with God's plans for us to become saints.  Blessed John of Avila said it best, "Your life consists in drawing nearer to God."  

As Lent is completed and we celebrate the Sacred Triduum, we hope to have experienced at least some degree of transformation of faith that has given us the desire to dive a bit deeper into the mystery that is God.  Traditionally, this period is known as the stage of Mystagogia.  Mystagogia or Mystagogy comes from the Greek words meaning "to lead through the mysteries."  It is the final stage for those who have gone through the RCIA program, but it is also a time of renewal and a deepening of faith for those who are already members of the Church.  This period is intended as a time to further discover what it means to participate in the sacramental mysteries of the Catholic Church.

The period of Mystagogia traditionally goes from Easter to Pentecost, and the selection for the Spring Seasons of Reading program, Living the Mysteries: A Guide for Unfinished Christians, is a devotional that follows that custom.  However, there is no reason that a reader could not use this devotional any time of the year.  As Unfinished Christians on that lifetime journey to sainthood, we can be open to learning more about our faith during any season of the year.

Each day, Living the Mysteries provides a short reading from one of the Church Fathers intended for prayer and reflection as well as a recommendation for some practical application of that day's teaching.  So, for anyone who has just completed RCIA to those who are cradle Catholics, this book can help all Unfinished Christians explore the mysteries of our faith and bring us nearer to God. 

From now until June 30, Living the Mysteries: A Guide for Unfinished Christians, will be available for purchase or special order at St. Patrick Book & Gift for 20% off the regular retail price!  This book would also make an excellent Confirmation gift.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Winter 2015

Our days are filled with–and sometimes ruled by—the “Yes” we give to others.  In her new book, The Grace of Yes: Eight Virtues for Generous Living, author Lisa Hendey explores how our lives could change if we were as generous with our “Yes” to God.  How would our lives look if we open-heartedly followed God’s will instead of our own, if we silenced ourselves long enough to listen to what God has planned for us and then answered with a hearty “Yes”?

The eight virtues Hendey considers are the grace of belief, generativity (and yes, she explains what that means), creativity, integrity, humility, vulnerability, no (sometimes “no” is the right response), and rebirth.  Hendey writes with such honesty and vulnerability as she uses examples of the effect of God’s grace in her own life experiences and those of her family and friends that readers of all ages and walks of life are bound to find the book to be extremely approachable and relatable—as well as highly readable.

Each chapter ends with questions “To Ponder” how each grace has worked—or needs to work—in our own lives, as well as a prayer to remind us that these graces are not something that we “do” on our own, but are gifts from God.  And all we need to do is to say, “Yes!”

If you’re unfamiliar with Lisa Hendey, you might want to check out her website,  Lisa began the site in the early days of new media and has continued to develop this wonderful resource that has become one of the most popular Catholic websites on the Internet.  She has authored a series of Catholic Mom books: The Handbook for Catholic Moms, The Book of Saints for Catholic Moms, and Small Steps for Catholic Moms.  Also, A Catholic Mother’s Companion to Pregnancy, The Catholic Baby Name Book, and Imitating Mary: Ten Marian Virtues for the Modern Mom.  Lisa has her own website at, is a popular speaker, mother of two—although an empty nester—and frequent guest on numerous Catholic podcasts and television programs.

The Grace of Yes is available for purchase or special order through St. Patrick Book & Gift from now until March 31.  Begin the New Year by committing your heart to saying 'Yes" to God and then to open your eyes to see the changes that it will make in your relationship to your family, your friends, and most especially to the God who loves each of us more than we can know.