Saturday, June 21, 2008

Letters of St. Paul

Generation after generation of belivers have heard excerpts from these letters proclaimed in the liturgy, but few people read each of Paul's letters from beginning to end.

Savoring these letters as a whole will embed them in our hearts and minds, expand our capacity to love, and deepen our faith.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

God's faithfulness unto death

God's faithfulness unto death is in search of our faithfulness.

The word of God is very important in our private life. Such a supremacy of the word of God does not apply only to bloody martyrdom. God's message, which stakes his life on the covenant with us, is a message for everyday life: in the little things, in the patience of faith every day, is realized the way of faithfulness.

And so, fixing our eyes on the blood of Christ, we convert ourselves always more and more to his love.

-- Joseph Ratzinger, Journey to Easter, pg 69

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Come Home for Easter

This morning Sr. Anna and Sr. Jamie brought a selection of our books and materials to Little Flower in Bethesda, MD for the parish's annual "Come Home for Easter" celebration. Next Tuesday we'll be at St. Patrick's in DC for the same event.

For us Paulines it is always a beautiful experience to find ourselves doing our mission side-by-side with the sacramental ministry of the Church.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Can you hear me now?

What are you listening to?

Us? Why of course we have our newest album playing: Catholic Favorites!

We've already caught a few people humming along with the CD as they browse our shelves.

The hymns range from Latin classics such as O Sanctissima and Ave Maria (by Arcadelt), to more recent favorites such as I Am the Bread of Life and Table of Plenty. See the whole list of hymns on the album listed here - or come in and hear it playing in our Center!

What are some of your favorite Church songs?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Pauline Center in Pakistan damaged in recent violence

Yesterday's bombings in Lahore, Pakistan caused serious damage to the Roman Catholic Cathedral and other Catholic locations in the vicinity, including the Pauline Center operated by the Daughters of St. Paul.

Sisters, employees and patrons were in the bookcenter at the moment of the terrorist attack. Although the roof and wall of the building collapsed, no one in our Center was injured or killed. A fact for which we are profoundly grateful, even as we mourn with others who did not escape injury. News sources report 24 killed and over 200 injured in the bombings which took place in two locations in the city of Lahore.

Although the Cathedral and the Bishop’s house were severely damaged, the Bishop himself came to visit our sisters to encourage and comfort them.

Even in these dark times the sisters are determined to rebuild.

For more information see

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

“Saint Who?”

Did you know that this Friday, February 22, is the first day of the novena for St. Katharine Drexel?

You can find the novena starting on page 54 of the recently released Saints for our Times: New Novenas & Prayers

“Saint Who?” you may ask… We’re so glad you did!

Katharine Drexel was born in Philadelphia in 1858. In her mid-twenties she inherited her father's fortune along with two other siblings. Already involved in philanthropic works, when she petitioned Pope Leo for missionaries to help the Native American people, she acted on his invitation, “Why not be a missionary yourself.”

Katharine returned to the States and within five years she began the

Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament dedicated to education and advocacy for some of the poorest and most marginalized people in the American society at her time.

Mother Katharine died in 1955 and was officially recognized as a saint by the Catholic Church in 2000.

Alexandria historical note:
St. Katharine contributed funds to the church, school and rectory buildings of Joseph’s Parish in Alexandria. Read about it here.

“The patient and humble endurance of the cross – whatever nature it may be – is the highest work we have to do” --St. Katharine Drexel

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A new release just in time for Valentines Day

Did you notice Song of Love on the new release table?

Song of Love is a small hardcover edition of the Song of Songs illustrated with miniatures from the Borso d’Este Bible.

The world celebrates love in any number of ways: good, bad (and sometimes ugly), all of which point to the underlying truth of our existence: we are created and sustained by love.

How fitting, then, to reread the great book of love poems from the Bible on this holiday. As the introduction to Song of Love tells us:

"The songs are first of all a celebration of human love in its various aspects: desire, physical attration, belonging, communion, complete giving. It is a love that also knows silence, solitude, fear and separation, but in the end prevails over all obstacles because 'love is strong as death' (Song 8:6)

"Besides being a celebration of human love, the Song of Songs has been read by Jews and Christians alike as an allegory in which the love of the lover for the beloved is seen as a parable of the love of God for creation. In this sense it can be read by all who are seeking to enter more fully into a loving relationship with the Creator, and are seeking words to express this love."

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The latest arrivals

We're starting this week with a whole bunch of great new titles!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Seek the Face of Christ

Today Sr. Anna and Sr. Sean are off to Mount St. Mary’s in Emmitsburg, MD for this year’s Mount 2008 youth conference. They will meet one of our volunteers, Kathy, who faithfully helps each year at this conference.


Mount 2000 is a Eucharistic centered retreat designed for high school and college age Catholics.

Let’s hear it for the JPII Generation! And let’s keep them in our prayers.

Photos of last year's conferece from the Mount 2000 web-site

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Forty Days

Approaching Easter
"Most of us can give up coffee or alcohol or chocolate for a day or two without really noticing, but to give them up for forty days is quite another matter. Your body will really notice that you have taken something away that it was used to receiving on a regular basis. It will make you feel that loss. Gradually as the days go by, though, your body will not remember its need for that particular fix any more. You will have changed something. Forty days is long enough to change all but the most deeply rooted habits.

"That's not the reason why Lent lasts for forty days, but it is a helpful piece of coincidence. The real reason is that forty days is the period of time that Jesus spent in the wilderness, as we read in Matthew’s Gospel. We keep Lent to try to share some of that experience with him.”

Excerpt from Approaching Easter: Lenten Reflections, Jane Williams, pages 9-10

Monday, February 4, 2008

“Christ made Himself poor for you”

From Pope Benedict XVI’s 2008 Lenten Message:

"He gave His entire self for us. Lent, also through the practice of almsgiving, inspires us to follow His example. In His school, we can learn to make of our lives a total gift; imitating Him, we are able to make ourselves available, not so much in giving a part of what we possess, but our very selves. Cannot the entire Gospel be summarized perhaps in the one commandment of love? The Lenten practice of almsgiving thus becomes a means to deepen our Christian vocation. In gratuitously offering himself, the Christian bears witness that it is love and not material richness that determines the laws of his existence. Love, then, gives almsgiving its value; it inspires various forms of giving, according to the possibilities and conditions of each person."

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Gotta start somewhere

Here it is - the Saturday before Lent starts - already!

As I stand here typing this first blog-post for our newest online presence, I'm looking out at a busy bookcenter. There's a woman looking over the liturgical workbooks, a fellow browsing the church documents (he has a couple of JP II encyclicals in his hand), a family casing out the inexpensive holy doo-dads (and trying to keep an enthusiastic 3 year old from pull every holy card out of its slot); a twenty-something looking through the Bibles and one of our regulars picking out a Lenten devotional.

People from every walk of life, and every level of understanding and commitment to the Faith come through our doors. Something (or Someone!) draws them here.

It is a good place to start.

Sr. Sean