Side by Side: A Catholic Mother-Daughter Journal
by Lori and Ava Ubowski
2018 Ave Maria Press
This book is intended as a way for a mom to bond with her tween daughter; however, I decided to use it as a means to connect with two of my daughters as knew that both my 15 year old and 12 year old would appreciate and enjoy the process. It will take a little bit of adapting as we go along to make it work in this way, but so far we have just divided the daughter responses in half. We have the book in a Ziplock bag with a different colored pen for each of us. This will be a good way for the three of us to connect, while also nurturing our faith as it connects to Catholic Saints and scripture woven among other general topics. As a mom still adjusting to having 5 girls and trying to navigate meeting the needs of each daughter, I appreciate this as one means to keep open the lines of communication with my oldest two as they navigate their first years of middle school and high school. As I anticipated, we are all enjoying it so far.
by Sister John Dominic Rasmussen, O.P.
2015 Lumen Ecclesiae Press
I am still reading the Life of Christ Lectio Divina Journal with The Great Adventure Catholic Bible for the Scripture readings (as the readings are not included in the journal). I started this journal back in August and am not about half way through the book. I have really appreciated the format of the book - some predictable structures and prompts mixed with those tailored to the specific reading. I had been wanting to read Scripture beyond daily readings more consistently and also wanted to explore lectio divina. This has been a perfect scaffold for me to be better equipped to pray lectio divina on my own. However, I was also excited to see that there is also an Advent Journal and a Lenten Journal by the same author with a similar look and feel that I will likely read in the future, perhaps in the next liturgical year.
I also continue to love my The Great Adventure Catholic Bible. I love the aesthetics of the Bible, as well as the way it feels physically. One area that has taken some adjusting for me though is that it is a different translation than what is used for daily readings on the USCCB site that matches the lectionary at my parish. There are some verses where I miss the wording I am more familiar with; however, having different wording of some of those passages has also helped me to consider based on the subtle differences. I love thinking about language and translation, so I have enjoyed that layer.
A Family of Saints: The Martins of Lisieux
by Fr. Stéphane-Joseph Piat, O.F.M.
2016 Ignatius Press
This has been on my to read pile for over a year. I am still on the initial pages but am excited to delve deeper into it. Jackie and Bobby Angel recently mentioned it in one of their Ascension videos, and it was a great reminder to prompt me to finally pull it out.
RECENTLY READ AND LOVED
Broken and Blessed: An Invitation to My Generation
by Fr. Josh Johnson
2018 Ascension Publishing
I have loved Fr. Josh's voice since I first saw him on Altaration from Ascension where he shared his vocation story alongside Fr. Mike Schmitz - I Will Follow. I saw him in some other Ascension Presents videos, including one that I especially loved about lectio divina, so I was thrilled when earlier this summer he started the podcast, Ask Fr. Josh and then when he announced his book. This break in between terms I read it, and as expected, really appreciated the ideas. There were a lot of familiar concepts and stories based on having listened to his podcast and viewed his other videos; however, the book also provided other details and suggestions. It also wove together the ideas with a common thread of prayer linked to the ideas in order to nurture a stronger relationship with God.
The Grace of Enough: Pursuing Less and Living More in a Throwaway Culture
by Haley Stewart
2018 Ave Maria Press
Don't Forget to Say Thank You: And Other Parenting Lessons That Brought Me Closer to God
by Lindsay Schlegel
2018 Ave Maria Press
I read these two books at the same time throughout the fall because I just couldn't choose one to begin and finish before starting the other and they were both featured as online book club books. I enjoyed the voices of both (I was already familiar with Lindsay Schlegel from her CatholicMom posts). Both of these books inspired me and gave me a lot to think about related to my vocation. I appreciated both of their experiences. There were concepts in both that I revisited multiple times and want to keep both to re-read in the future. Both had concepts that highly resonated with me and my experiences/thoughts/feelings in this phase of life.
by Fr. Jacques Philippe
In anticipation for a retreat later this spring with Fr. Jacques Philippe, I am re-reading his books, and this was the first one. Read just about a year after the first time, I benefited from refreshing my memory and once again enjoyed his ideas.