I’ve been a fan of CatholicMom.com since the days when it was little more than coloring sheets and a few articles each month. I would go on every Sunday morning and print coloring pages for my girls to use at Mass, occasionally checking for neat projects we could do as a homeschooling family that would tie in with the Liturgical Season. These days, of course, CatholicMom.com is far more than this: it’s become a site with daily Gospel reflections, resources for families, book reviews, tech reviews, insights into spiritual life, and even a way to celebrate the Small Successes we have each week.
It’s a great honor for me to be a contributor to the site, and it’s an even greater honor to be a part of The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion, a book of daily stories and meditations for each day of the year. I’ve been using the Prayer Companion for a couple of weeks now, usually finishing up my Morning Prayers by reading the day’s meditations, and I have yet to be disappointed. Each day brings a fresh perspective from one of over 80 writers that includes Danielle Bean, Pat Gohn, Judy Landrieu Klein, Elizabeth Scalia, and, of course, the editors of the book: Lisa Hendey and Sarah Reinhard. The book has pulled together mothers, fathers, deacons, sisters, people in lay orders … in other words, not just moms.
This variety of writers means that the book isn’t meant just for mothers, just as CatholicMom.com is not a site solely for mothers. There’s wisdom to be had in each day’s reading, which is followed up by a short prayer and some provoking questions to ponder throughout your day. Not only that, but each day has a theme to it (“Jesus the Nurturer” or “Embracing Limitations”) and many days include the Saint of the day or a National [Fill in the Blank] Day. For example, did you know that August 17 is National Thrift Shop Day? My younger daughter, who loves the outdoors and is always asking to go hiking or out walking on the local trails, was tickled to learn that her birthday is Father-Daughter Take a Walk Together Day. And this beautiful book is the first one I’ve seen with Saint Teresa of Calcutta written in bold print on September 5!
When Lisa and Sarah asked me to be a part of this project, I knew it sounded good. After all, the Daily Gospel Reflections on CatholicMom.com have been going strong with thoughtful meditations for years now, and if some of those folks were involved, it had to be great! But the book is surpassing my expectations. The idea of including those silly themes (Leave Work Early Day, anyone?) was brilliant because even those silly themes can be related to our faith and our vocations in life.
The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion: A Book of Daily Reflections is available from Ave Maria Press for $16.95, but I’d like to give a copy away to kick off the month of September! If you’d like to win a copy of the book, leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite holiday (or Holy Day) — whether it’s a religious or one of those silly secular ones — and on September 8 at noon EDT (the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary), I’ll choose one comment at random as the winner! (One entry per person, please.)