The Mom and the Sacristan: A Lesson in Mercy


I’m in the narthex of the church again, trying to pay attention to Mass while G stumbles around stacking and unstacking the brochures on the display table. Pretty much the same place I am every Sunday, at one point or another. I’m cool with it. But this Sunday, about 20 minutes into Mass (yeah, we didn’t make it that long in the pew this week.
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Live Like a Saint: Saint Nicholas!

st nick

Note from the editor: Charisse put together this lovely spread for our winter issue of Tender Tidings, but we are still putting together the issue and St. Nicholas’ feast day is on Sunday. So we wanted to release her spread here so you would have time to use her ideas. God bless! St. Nicholas, the patron and protector of children, is known for his generous
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What Adolescents Want (and How Attachment Parenting Gives It to Them)


My 11-year-old always seems to be hanging around lately. Peering over my shoulder as I pay the bills, following me around as I search for a quiet room to sneak in a few minutes of prayer, and shuffling around the corner with a bored, middle school expression on his face right in the middle of a good conversation with my husband. This is a kid
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Grateful Parent, Happy Parent


“When we were children we were grateful to those who filled our stockings at Christmastime. Why are we not grateful to God for filling our stockings with legs?” — G.K. Chesterton All parents want to be happy and God wants that for us, too.  There are obstacles to our happiness, though.  We can fall into the trap of believing that once our baby sleeps through the night
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It’s Okay to “Just” Be a Mom

autumn family2

Every so often, it seems I am compelled to test my limits–to see how much I can cram into my schedule before I break. And, before I know it, I’m a harried mess, wondering why my household, and my mind, are falling apart. As moms, we feel so much pressure. And not just from the local news anchor who’s back on the job after six
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Of Medal of Honors and Saints by Sr. Mary Ann Walsh, RSM

veterans day

Editors note: A reflection by Mary Ann Walsh, RSM, with permission of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Military heroes move me. At Baltimore–Washington International Airport I’ve cried. Once it was when I stood with others at attention as a fallen hero in a flag-draped coffin was carried to his final flight home. Another time was when I met veterans in red tee-shirts and
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Who Mothers Mommy?

Maternal Kiss (Mary Cassatt)

Motherhood is a profound blessing and should be deep source of meaning for women, but a mom also faces sleepless nights, strained schedules, and the competing needs of her kids, her spouse, her extended family, her community, and finally HERSELF! What allows some moms to thrive and to find deep satisfaction in motherhood despite the inevitable challenges while others do not thrive emotionally? Two researchers
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Recommended: Feast Day Celebration Book for Gluten-Free Families

FEAST cover

I’ve been saying for ages that somebody should write a liturgical feast celebration book with gluten-free recipes.  Well, it turns out somebody did it! Haley Stewart and her hubby over at Carrots for Michaelmas have written FEAST: Real Food, Reflections, and Simple Living for the Christian Year. They put together several real food, gluten-free recipes to help you observe: the Christian year, the lives of
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All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day Remind Us to Be Saints, Not Stars

halloween image

“What if we took all the money and time we put into tutors and coaches and private lessons, and invested instead in making our children holy? Not well-known and praised and celebrated for what they do, but humble and meek and truly holy in who they are?” The other day, after volunteering in our son’s kindergarten classroom, my husband came home more anxious than when
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Would You Boycott Christmas? Why Catholic families should celebrate Halloween!


I raised my nine children in the shadow of  other dedicated Catholic mothers, mostly homeschoolers, who thought Halloween was evil, dedicated to witches. Their children were not allowed to celebrate with their neighbors but went to a church basement to celebrate All Saints Eve. This church was an hour away from us. More importantly, I felt my children suffered enough  because of a perceived alienation
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Saintly Peg Dolls

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Our peg dolls are smiling from the table. Little hands reach up to collect a few. Then we chat about who this saint was and is. Have you heard about the rage of saint dolls for Catholic children? Meet some of our peg dolls. I’ve been painting small pegs of wood for many years. Sometimes I do a few at a time.   Imagine the simplicity
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Keeping the Hallowed in Halloween

tierney saints

I love Halloween candy. I still remember getting all dressed up and heading out early to trick-or-treat with my friends so we would have time to hit two or three neighborhoods. My overflowing bag would sit in a corner of my bedroom, tempting me to have “just one more” every time I looked at it. The candy always seemed to disappear too fast, and Halloween
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