Spending Lent with Mary

spending lent with mary

A few years ago, my Lent began in an unfamiliar house, face-to-face with a woman who was living my nightmare. On Epiphany that year, my sister-in-law faced a horror I still can’t imagine, one that topped her list of sorrows and that changed my prayer life forever. When her husband, my brother-in-law, died suddenly and […]

Mary and the Passion

crucifixion botticelli

A Mary Moment Monday post Recently, one of my oldest friends asked me for some insight on the Virgin Mary and the Passion. She’s not Catholic, but she reads my blog anyway (like I said, one of my oldest friends). She had an “assignment” at her church, and she was preparing a talk considering Mary’s […]

A Mother’s Tears

Mary Figure

A Mary Moment Monday post I’ve been thinking about this post since Friday afternoon, when my mother-in-law got a call from my sister-in-law about what had happened in Connecticut. Then, a friend on Facebook started a prayer movement. But…what can I say? What can I add? All I have is a title. And a mental […]

Dear Friend: A Letter about Miscarriage {Mom to Mom}

mom to mom series

By Maria Johnson Dear Sarah, You asked me to share my experience with miscarriage, and I have to admit that I balked for a moment. It’s because I feared revealing the raw honesty of my answer. Because I am a woman, I revisit the horror of the experience every month, sometimes as a phantom memory, […]

Have a Laugh in Heaven for Me: A Memoriam of Walt Staples

Walt Staples

I don’t know, really, how I became friends with Walt Staples. We were both members of the Catholic Writers Guild, and I suppose that’s where it started. At one of the online conferences, we became crit partners. What that means, with someone like Walt, is that I got a first glimpse at his hilarious and […]

The January 3 Anniversary


Dear Allen, Today is your day. And we remember. As we look at the beauty of the day, as we struggle through commonplace challenges, as we get on with our lives forever changed, we remember. As we pray for your soul and those who grieve most deeply, we remember. As we heal and yet remain […]

A Great Guide to Help Kids Grieve

I Will Remember You

I had never really considered grieving for children before I became the bystander. In the wake of a sudden and unexpected family death, two of my nieces became case studies in children grieving. I have felt, in the last year-and-a-half, overwhelmingly helpless. I don’t know what to say; I don’t know what to do; I […]

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