Happy Feast Day and Anniversary!

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Isn’t the above picture great? One of these days I need to get around to ordering a portrait of St. Gianna from Portraits of Saints for my home. (What a great shop – I love their images!)

It’s the feast day of this blog’s patroness, St. Gianna Beretta Molla, and the one-year anniversary of the launch of this blog! St. Gianna, pray for us!

I haven’t been as prolific a blogger as I’d hoped (darn real life getting in the way), but our Facebook group is still going strong – we have over 1,300 members now – and I remember most days to post something to the blog’s Facebook page.

In other news, I discovered something tremendously exciting this morning. I’ve always wished that I knew about St. Gianna when I was confirmed in 2003 (she was “Blessed Gianna” at the time, as she wasn’t canonized until 2004), because if I had I would have taken her name as my confirmation name.

However, today being St. Gianna’s feast day, I was curious and decided to look up the etymology of her name. (BTW, shout out to two fantastic sites for name geeks — Behind the Name and Sancta Nomina.)

Guess what I found out? “Gianna” is another form of “Joanna”! I was named after my favorite saint, and one of the patronesses of working mothers, twenty-four years before she was canonized! Somehow, I don’t think that’s a coincidence (especially since family lore has it that my parents had another name for me in mind throughout my mother’s pregnancy, and only decided to name me JoAnna after I was born). Thanks, Holy Spirit!

 

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Novena To Obtain Graces Through Saint Gianna Beretta Molla

Today is Day 1 of the Novena to St. Gianna! Won’t you join me in prayer? The novena ends on St. Gianna’s feast day, April 28.

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© José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro / , via Wikimedia Commons

God, our Father, You have granted to Your church the gift of Gianna Beretta Molla. In her youth she lovingly sought You and drew other young people to You, involving them, through apostolic witness and Catholic Action, in the care of the sick and aged, to help and comfort them.We thank You for the gift of this young woman, so deeply committed to You. Through her example grant us the grace to consecrate our lives to Your service, for the joy of our brothers and sisters.

Glory be …

Jesus, Redeemer of mankind, You called Saint Gianna to exercise the medical profession as a mission for the comfort of bodies and souls. In her suffering fellow men and in the little ones, deprived of all support, she saw You.

We thank You for having revealed Yourself to this servant as “one who serves” and who soothes the sufferings of men. Treasuring her example may we become generous Christians at the service of our brothers and sisters, especially those with whom You deign to share Your Cross.

Glory be…

God, Sanctifying Spirit, who love the Church as Your Bride, You poured into the heart of Saint Gianna a share of Your Love so that she could radiate it in her family, and thus cooperate with You in the wonderful plan of creation, and give life to new children who could know and love You.

We thank You for this model wife and, through her encouraging witness, we beg You to grant to our families the serene and Christian presence of mothers committed to transform their homes into cenacles of faith and love, rich with generous activity and sanctifying service.

Glory be…

O God, Creator and lover of mankind, You were close to Saint Gianna when, affected by illness, she was in the painful dilemma of choosing between her own life and the life of the child whom she was carrying in herself, a gift long-awaited. Trusting You alone, and aware of Your Commandment to respect human life, Gianna found the courage to do her duty as a mother and to say “yes” to the new life of her baby, generously sacrificing her own. Through the intercession of Mary, Mother of Jesus, and after the example of Gianna, inspire all mothers to welcome with love the sparkle of new life. Grant us the grace we are praying for …………. and the joy to find an inspiration in Saint Gianna who, as a model spouse and mother, after the example of Christ, gave up her life for the life of others.

Hail Mary…

St. Gianna Beretta Molla

Welcome and GIVEAWAY!

Today is the feast day of St. Gianna Beretta Molla (patroness of Catholic working mothers) and the official launch of this site! Hooray! I’m so happy this day is finally here!

The most common refrain I hear when I meet another Catholic working mother, whether online or in person, is, “I’m so glad to know I’m not alone!”

If you are a Catholic working mother, you are not alone! I want this site to be a source of encouragement and inspiration for Catholic working mothers who are struggling to balance the duties of their vocations as mothers with the responsibilities of being wage earners, whether outside of the home or from the home.

We are Catholic. We are lay Catholic women faithful to the Magesterium of the Catholic Church. We hold, believe and practice all that the Holy Catholic Church teaches, believes and proclaims to be true, whether from the natural moral law or by way of revelation from God through Scripture and Tradition.

We are Working. We earn a wage in addition to our responsibilities as mothers and/or wives. Some of us work part-time; some of us work full-time. Some of us are freelancers or saleswomen; some of us are executives, teachers, or retail employees. Some of us have spouses who work, some of us are the primary breadwinners for our families while our spouse is in school or stays at home, and some of us are single, divorced, or widowed. Some of us are working by choice; some of us only work because we have no other means by which to support our families.

We are Mothers. Some of us are pregnant. Some of us have children by adoption. Some of us have one or two children on earth. Some of us have three or more children. Some of us have children in heaven. All of us recognize that our vocation as a mother is one of the most important jobs we will ever have.

We don’t compete with stay-at-home moms – we complement them. We both have tremendously important jobs with equally difficult responsibilities and unique challenges. Some of us may transition over time depending on our season of life. Regardless of where we are, it is so important to have community – a group of like-minded women who we feel will understand our trials, tribulations, triumphs and successes as we strive to serve God in all things, whether at work or at home.

In the words of Pope St. John Paul II,

Thank you, women who are mothers! You have sheltered human beings within yourselves in a unique experience of joy and travail. This experience makes you become God’s own smile upon the newborn child, the one who guides your child’s first steps, who helps it to grow, and who is the anchor as the child makes its way along the journey of life.

[…]

Thank you, women who work! You are present and active in every area of life-social, economic, cultural, artistic and political. In this way you make an indispensable contribution to the growth of a culture which unites reason and feeling, to a model of life ever open to the sense of “mystery”, to the establishment of economic and political structures ever more worthy of humanity.

Please follow me on social media! This blog has its own public Facebook page and Twitter account (most tweets will include #catholicworkingmother), as well as a Pinterest board. (There is also a closed Facebook group available for people who prefer more privacy.) You can also follow the blog via email (see left sidebar to sign up), or on various blog readers (feedly, bloglovin, etc).

To celebrate the launch of this site, I’m doing a giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a copy of Saint Gianna Molla: Wife, Mother, Doctor by Pietro Molla and Elio Guerriero, in either paperback or e-book format (winner’s choice).

 

To enter the giveaway, check out the options below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway ends the evening of May 4, and I’ll announce the winner the next day. Thank you for visiting, and please spread the word!