Thursday, July 30, 2009

“A Guy’s Guide to the Good Life - Virtues for Men” by Robert P. Lockwood

(HuzBen is taking over East Valley Life today to weigh in on a men's book he just finished. Thank you Dumpling!)

“A Guy’s Guide to the Good Life - Virtues for Men” by Robert P. Lockwood

Can you name the seven virtues? If you haven’t given much thought on Prudence, Temperance, Justice, Fortitude, Hope, Faith and Charity, Robert P. Lockwood’s book might give you something to think about.

Lockwood breaks down the virtues into their own chapters and during the course of 140-plus pages, used a myriad of personal stories that stretch from being a boy and lessons learned from his father (he refers to as Old Man) to the mores recent experiences of being a grandfather of twins. A lot of the stories on everyday activities, such as a love for baseball and eating in diners, some traveling and many funeral stories of friends and family alike are told, illustrating how we can find lessons and a better life in the seven virtues.

Not all stories have a clear point or will touch your interest. Often, his viewpoint is sentimental and wistful for an age gone by, which a younger reader may not identify with. That’s fine, as there are many different stories devoted to each virtue and during each chapter. At least one story made me understand a new and better way of looking at each virtue, applying them to everyday life, and living better in service to God through these virtues.

The books may be best read by the Catholic who wants a refresher, to find new meaning and understanding in his faith and look to the virtues that have been around for a long time, yet can serve us in the modern day and everyday.

“A Guy’s Guide to the Good Life - Virtues for Men” by Robert P. Lockwood is available at The Catholic Company.

(Note from Leigh - this book sounds like a great gift for someone making their Confirmation or for a new Catholic entering the Church.)

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Dressing with Dignity

We are not supposed to sit in judgement of of others, but really, who hasn't been in a pew before Mass and bit their tongue while watching the parade of half dressed young people (and some adults!) walk down the aisle. In fact, I think it was in church where I first heard the phrase "muffin top" to describe the spillage of flesh peeking out between a young girls crop top and her hip huggers. I was clueless and actually asked my husband why people were discussing baked goods before Mass. Hello? We Catholics all know that the baked goods and coffee come after Mass. :-)

Admittedly, some people would be horrified at my church attire on occasion, usually pedal pushers and a coodinating top during the hot Arizona summers. It's mortifying to say that and I am trying to make a conscious effort to change. It's for this reason I decided to read Dressing with Dignity.

Colleen Hammond's book, 'Dressing With Dignity' was nothing like I expected when I picked it up this weekend. Prepared for a simple primer on how to dress for the appropriate occasion and perhaps a few website resources, I was completely suprised thought provoking book and the enormous amount of research that when into it.

Starting with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and progressing through the centuries to the Freemasons and Coco Chanel, the author is meticuluous in her citations that back her explanations and opinions. She tracks women's slow slide down the path of feminism and explains why and how we all ended up in this morally corrupt society. It's a fascinating read that offers real solutions on how to return to modesty and femininity.

The book was first published in 2004 and as I finished the book last night I wondered how much of an impact the Pure Fashion movement and books like Dressing With Dignity have had on people in the last five years. It didn't take long to get my answer. Today we all watched the memorial service for Michael Jackson. Except for the female singer with the wildly inappropriate clevege, everyone was dressed with the respect and reverence befitting the event. No wardrobe malfunctions in sight. It's my hope that in the future young ladies choose to conduct themselves less like Paris Hilton and more like Paris Jackson.

Dressing With Dignity is available at The Catholic Company.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Novena to St. Peregrine

Novena to St. Peregrine - Patron Saint of Cancer Patients

Glorious wonder-worker, St. Peregrine,
you answered the divine call with a ready spirit,
and forsook all the comforts of a life of ease
and all the empty honors of the world
to dedicate yourself to God
in the Order of His Holy Mother.
You labored manfully for the salvation of souls.
In union with Jesus crucified,
you endured painful sufferings with such patience
as to deserve to be healed miraculously
of an incurable cancer in your leg
by a touch of His divine hand.
Obtain for me the grace to answer every call of God
and to fulfill His will in all the events of life.
Enkindle in my heart a consuming zeal
for the salvation of all men.
Deliver me from the infirmities
that afflict my body...

(Mention your need here...)

Obtain for me also a perfect resignation
to the sufferings it may please God to send me,
so that, imitating our crucified Savior and His sorrowful Mother,
I may merit eternal glory in heaven.

St. Peregrine, pray for me and for all who invoke your aid.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Magnificat Magazine

The Liturgy of the Hours is the official set of Roman Catholic prayers designated to be prayed at specific times throughout the day by Catholic clergy and laity alike. The Liturgy consists of prayers, hymns and psalms, recited in a specified order at the specified times of the day.

I tried to pray the Liturgy, but it is complicated and confusing to flip back and forth between the ribbon page markers while trying to concentrate on the prayers. I tried and gave up on the prayers many times in frustration. The Liturgy didn’t work for me until I ran across Magnificat magazine at Mary Immaculate Books and Gifts here in Mesa.

Magnificat is a Catholic magazine that contains prayers of the Mass, stories of Catholic saints, fantastic artwork (the June cover is pictured here) and yes, the Liturgy of the Hours in a daily format.

I love the fact that the publisher has managed to pack so much information into such a compact size. Magnificat tucks nicely into my purse so I can tote it to Mass or Adoration. If you're like me and you've given up on the Liturgy of the Hours due to its' complexity - give Magnificat a try.

To see more about Magnificat and other Catholic products - check out The Catholic Company.

Follow Magnificat on Twitter.