Unless otherwise specified, all writing here on my blog is my own original work. If you refer to something I've written here, please be sure to give me proper credit.

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Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Catholic Company Book Review: Encyclopedia of U.S. Catholic History

Our Sunday Visitor's Encyclopedia of U.S. Catholic History by Matthew Bunson & Margaret Bunson is my newest review book for The Catholic Company. 

Geared toward the Catholic layperson, it includes biographies, places, writings, events, organizations, a section on anti-Catholicism, & other topics (including some hot ones!)  All dioceses in the U.S. are listed, as well as the Catholic history of each state.

It covers people who have had great affects on Catholic U.S. history (Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Bing Crosby, Juan Ponce de Leon, Native American Catholics, popes & their influence on the Church in America), Catholic media (EWTN, National Catholic Register), & Catholic universities, 

There are well-detailed pencil drawings & portraits significant to Catholic U.S. history scattered throughout...Blessed John XXIII, Cardinal Bernard Law, Ethel Barrymore, Dorothy Day, & numerous cathedrals to name a few.

If the book seems overwhelming at first, a good place to start would be pages 11-20. There, one will find a chronology of U.S. Catholic history...key dates from 1492-2011. There are also four appendices: 
* Saints, Blesseds, & Venerables of America
* Missionaries to the Americas
* Catholics in Statuary Hall
* Cathedrals, Basilicas, & Shrines.

There is so much information packed into this encyclopedia. It would be a great reference for all Catholic families to have on hand. I look forward to using it often, especially in our family's homeschooling activities.

(This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Encyclopedia of U.S. Catholic History. The Catholic Company is the best resource for all your seasonal needs such as First Communion gifts as well as ideas and gifts for the special papal Year of Faith.)

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Deo Gratias

 "If the only prayer you ever say in your life is thank you, it will be enough." - Meister Eckhart

Colleen, from her inspiring blog Thoughts on Grace, hosts this wonderful meme each Wednesday. She says, "Deo Gratias is Latin for Thanks be to God. Remembering to give thanks for all of our blessings, big & small, helps us to find God in our everyday moments and gives us an attitude of gratitude!"

Each week, I join Colleen in remembering & sharing the many blessings in my life. This is such a great exercise for me, helping me to focus on the good that truly is happening in my life, no matter how many trials & stresses I may have.

1) Last Thursday Matt & I celebrated our 15th anniversary. You can read my post from that day HERE. Matt bought me a beautiful diamond & sapphire heart bracelet. For him, I put together a 5x7 album of photos & memories starting when we were babies & progressing to our current family. I also bought him Season 1 of Duck Dynasty. Yes, we've gotten hooked on it! Deo Gratias!

2) HelpfulGrammy watched the Blessings on Friday while Matt & I went out to celebrate our 15th anniversary. We lunched at Chipotle & went to see Star Trek: Into Darkness. We had a great afternoon together. Deo Gratias! 
3) On Saturday, we met up w/ some of my dearest college friends & their families at the zoo. We had a great time catching up & watching our children develop friendships Deo Gratias!

4) I found this great quote to send to my nephew in his birthday card. He is currently in Italy...about four months into his two year mission. Deo Gratias!

"Missing someone gets easier every day because even though it's one day further from the last time you saw each other, it's one day closer to the next time you will." (Author Unknown)

5) In light of all the morally corrupt & depressing issues facing Christians these days, I am holding fast to my Faith...trusting that God's infinite plan for us will NEVER be taken away. He never promised that our time here on earth would be easy, but He has promised eternal salvation & peace in His Heavenly Kingdom. THAT is what gets me through each day! Deo Gratias!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Light in the Darkness

Welcome to my Light in the Darkness meme! (If you missed my post on the inspiration for this meme, you can read all about it HERE.)

This is the place to share good things that are happening in our world...whether it's a link to a news article/video, something from your personal experience...anything good that can bring light into darkness!
There are so many things we take for granted in our lives...our sight, our physical mobility, our hearing. I can't imagine what it must have been like for this little boy to hear his dad's voice for the first time & what it was like for his parents to see the expression on his face.