Thursday, July 26, 2007

Wish list...

Item that was posted here has been claimed ... thanks, Dianne!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Review of "The Girls Who Went Away"

I recently read this book, which is making its rounds on the adoption and foster care circuit. The subtitle alone makes a none-too-subtle record of the author's perspective. However, I wanted to share this with you thoughtful women of faith, in hopes that it will cause you to ponder what it means to be a voice of hope and faith in the world.

These women's stories are powerful. There is no denying that they have suffered a great deal, as have their children. What I most appreciated about the Catholic perspective on womanhood in general and motherhood in particular, is where that suffering comes from ... and how that suffering can be used for good. I write about the book here. Let me know what you think!

Blessings-- Heidi

Monday, July 23, 2007

Donna's Prayer Request

Donna O'Boyle has an urgent prayer request for two boys, one of whom is in critical condition after a hiking accident. She writes about it on her blog here.

Please remember Briant in your prayers today. Thanks!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Ten Commandments of Managing Money

In the September/October issue of Canticle, financial advisor Francine Huff (author of The 25 Day Financial Makeover) has a great article on good stewardship. She included in the original article this sidebar of "Ten Commandments" that did not fit in the final layout ... I offer it here to whet your appetite for the next issue. They are ...

1. Set clear financial goals
2. Quit overspending
3. Create and use a budget
4. Save for a rainy day
5. Share your wealth with others
6. Eliminate debt
7. Plan for retirement
8. Teach the next generation about good stewardship
9. Avoid having a hoarding mentality
10. Live within your means

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Are Catholic magazines going the way of the dodo?

This morning Pat Gohn passed along this article to me that I thought was very insightful, regarding trends in magazine publishing. My favorite quote: If you want a certain magazine to survive, you must SUBSCRIBE to it! (What a concept.)

Thanks, Pat, for sending this to us!

Friday, July 13, 2007

The ABC's to Abuse-Proofing Your Child

In case you have not already seen it, my article on teens and dating appeared on Catholic Exchange yesterday. Already several people have written to me about how helpful the "dating checklist" is. It is my prayer that at least one teenager will read it, and end a questionable relationship before it's too late.

(And let me introduce you to my two nieces, Kendra and Kaitlyn. Aren't they beautiful? Their mother is "Karen.")

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Reflection on the "Motu Proprio"...

... For those of you who would care to read it, I've placed a reflection here that I hope will appear in a future Catholic Exchange column. Honestly, this is not the work of just one person ... I'm so grateful that a number of you willingly took time to read multiple versions and offer feedback. (Any errors that remain are 100% my own.) If you have written something about the rescript that you would like others to read, please send me the link. God bless!

"Women of Grace" logo

Would you like to include a "Women of Grace" logo on your blog or website?

If so, please let me know and I'll send you the formula ... I've tried pasting the formula in here and the logo appears ... but not the formula!.

Blessings -- Heidi

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Heidi's Back from EWTN!

It has been a busy 24 hours ... flew to Birmingham to tape two television shows, one on Canticle and one on my upcoming book through Simon Peter Press called Raising Up Mommy: Virtues for Difficult Mothering Moments. (Personally, I preferred my original title: Taming the Mommy Monster, but you can't get too attached to a working title, since most publishers reserve the right to market books as they see fit.)

Both programs will probably run in the fall. I'll keep you posted on the date (maybe we can all have a virtual tea party or something).

SPOILER ALERT! But you heard it here first ... when the program airs, LHLA is going to offer free trial subscriptions to anyone who calls in to request one. (You get one free copy to decide whether you want to continue the subscription, either by paying the enclosed invoice or signing it and returning it.) Of course, since it's such a fine magazine, no one in her right mind would ever decide not to subscribe ... right? :-)

On my way to the studio, I struck up a conversation with my driver, and learned that his daughter's husband was a Marine. Immediately I pulled out a copy of the latest issue (the one with Elena Vidal's darling daughter) and offered it to him. He looked a bit confused. "Are you Catholic?" I asked him.

"No, I like James Dobson ... you ever heard of him?"

"Oh, OK.," I replied, assuming that a Dobson fan might not want a magazine emblazoned with the Blessed Virgin. "I just thought that since your daughter was a military wife, she might find this interesting."

With that he pulled the magazine out of my hands. "Well, I guess it doesn't matter what kind of Christian you are ... mothers can always use some good advice, right?" I couldn't have said it better myself. Please pray for the driver, Steve, and his family.

While I was in Alabama, I had a chance to chat with Virginia Fisher, who wrote a wonderful article for the Sept/Oct issue based on her interview with John "Wild at Heart" Eldredge (Genevieve reviews Stasi Eldredge's book for women: Your Captivating Heart). There are many men -- both Protestant and Catholic -- who have been drawn to Eldredge's work, which focuses on authentic Christian manhood. If you don't already subscribe to Canticle (or if you know someone who is reading these books who is interested in a Catholic perspective on the Eldredge books), order your subscription today! (800-558-5452).

And if you're in the market for an apron, check out Virginia's site.

In other news, Donna O'Boyle has posted her first "Catholic Mother's Carnival." Check it out!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Special Message from Johnnette

Greetings!Every once in a while a very special need occurs here at the ministry that compels me to reach out to our supporters with a request for prayerful and financial help.

That special need now is for Gabriel Sullivan, the youngest son of Tom Sullivan, our Information Technology Director here at the ministry. Gabriel was diagnosed with leukemia on May 1, 2007. We at the ministry, along with Tom, his wife Carol and their six children, have been devastated by the sudden and unexpected news.

Gabriel is 3 years old and his diagnosis is Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), cancer of the blood. He is currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments at All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, FL. Gabriel has been hospitalized many times since May 1 with various complications that have added to the already soaring medical costs.

Gabriel's medical team is very hopeful he will survive leukemia and experience a full recovery over a 3.4 year period of medical treatments. Those treatments include bone marrow biopsies, spinal taps, blood transfusions and testing, more chemotherapy, and creating a germ-free home environment for Gabriel so that the extremely dangerous chance of infection can be reduced.
Perhaps you know of a child with cancer and can relate to the heartbreaking situation Gabriel and his family are experiencing right now. Nothing hurts more than to see a little one suffering. It is, indeed, one of the greatest devastations a parent can experience.

Adding to the hardship of the Sullivan family, is the cost of care associated with Gabriel’s cancer. The mounting balance is staggering. I am asking you today to prayerfully consider helping to defer some of those medical costs for Gabriel. We have established a special fund for this purpose and 100% of your charitable, tax-deductible donation will go to the cost of Gabriel’s treatment and medical bills.

You can follow Gabriel’s progress at his website. There you can read regular updates, reflections by Tom, view pictures and videos, download a prayer card to join us in praying for Gabriel and make a tax-deductible donation through Living His Life Abundantly.

For the sake of Christian charity, please ask the Holy Spirit to guide your decision. I pray that you’ll consider a sacrificial offering to help Gabriel recover from his leukemia. I am confident God will reward you greatly for your generosity. Simply click here to make your contribution.

If you prefer to mail your donation, you can do so by sending it to:

Gabriel Sullivan Fundc/o Living His Life Abundantly325 Scarlet Blvd.Oldsmar, FL 34677

Make your check payable to LHLA and mark “Gabriel Fund” in your memo. Or if you would like to make a donation over the phone, you can give us a call at 800-558-5452.

From all of us here at Living His Life Abundantly and Women of Grace, thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely in Christ,

Johnnette Benkovic

PS: I’m including below the prayer we at the ministry say for Gabriel at daily Mass. Would you join us by praying this prayer for Gabriel as well?

Prayer for Gabriel
Heavenly Father, I call on you right now in a special way. It is through Your power that Gabriel was created. Every breath he takes, every morning he wakes, and every moment of every hour, he lives under Your power.
Father, I ask you now to touch Gabriel with that same power. For if You created him from nothing, You can certainly recreate him. Fill him with the healing power of Your Spirit. Cast out anything that should not be in him. Mend what is broken. Root out any unproductive cells. Open any blocked arteries or veins and rebuild any damaged area. Remove all inflammation and cleanse any infection.
Let the warmth of Your healing love pass through Gabriel’s body to make new any unhealthy areas so that his body will function the way you created it to function. And Father, restore Gabriel to full health in mind and body so that he may serve You the rest of his life. I ask this through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Happy 4th of July

It has been a busy week. We just got back from Philadelphia (we took in the King Tut exhibit, which fascinated Christopher -- he had studied about King Tut in school this year). My favorite part of the trip was getting a chance to meet Elena Maria Vidal (Mary-Eileen Russell), who invited us to her home for a truly delightful afternoon of barbecue and conversation. It was fun watching Sarah and Ellie play together.

On Sunday I leave for Alabama, where I will be at EWTN taping two shows with Johnnette, one on my upcoming book "Raising Up Mommy," and one to promote Canticle. I'm not sure yet when the show is going to run ... I'll keep you posted.

Finally, I'd like to alert you to a special post I wrote today in honor of our country's birthday, and especially to honor my nephew Ryan, who left this week to start basic training in artillary. He graduated from high school just last week, and it is hard to imagine him holding a gun. Please pray with me, that he will come through this experience physically and spiritually unscathed.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Foreign subscriptions ...

... can now be ordered online by clicking here.

Thanks to Coffee Wife and others who recommended this change to the website!