Friday, April 30, 2010

New Vocations Website!


Here's two videos linked there:

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Registration for the Catholic New Media Celebration is OPEN NOW!

The Catholic New Media Celebration is coming to Boston!  

The date is Sat. Aug 7, with a full day's program designed to teach and inspire. It's one-part conference day and one-part inspiration and community-building. 

We are pleased to announce that the CNMC is being hosted at the Pastoral Center of the Archdiocese of Boston, home of Cardinal Sean O'Malley, a regular in the blogosphere, and who is scheduled to take part in the day!

There's also a preliminary reception, sponsored by The Catholic Company, the night before, and an invitation to join us for Mass at Catholic TV on Sunday. 

(BTW, "MMX" = 2010, for those of you who forget your Roman numerals.)

Sign up now to take part!  Book your flights and your hotels!
If you live near Boston, we can't wait to meet you!

There's a podcasting track, a blogging track, even a children's track (tho' space is limited on that one).

Come meet your favorite SQPN podcasters at this 3rd annual event!  (Yours truly can't wait to meet you in person!)

Come listen to keynotes from Lino Rulli, that Catholic Guy from Serius XM radio, and Lino at Large... and Fr. Robert Reed, head of Catholic TV.  

Fr. Roderick Von Hogan, Founder and CEO of SQPN and host to so many Catholic podcasts (The Break, Secrets of Harry Potter, Biggest Loser, Secrets of Farmville, et al), and will lead a crackerjack team of SQPN podcasters in the podcasting track, and the blogging track features the talents of Thomas Peters (American Papist at, Sarah Reinhard, (Just Another Day of Catholic Pondering), Rachel Balducci (Testosterhome, Faith and Family Live) and more.

If you produce Catholic content for new media, there's the new media gallery to show off your talents and expertise.  Sign up now!

And the event still has room for a few more sponsors!  Your business or organization can benefit from this growing media network!

This CNMC is for people who are interested in using new media as part of the New Evangelization and spreading the good news via the internet.  No experience necessary. Come watch and learn.  For those veterans out there, this is a time to grow your craft and to network with others in this exciting field.

For full details go here.

This makes me think...

Humility might make us indifferent even to a good reputation, were it not for charity’s sake; but seeing that it is a groundwork of society, and without it we are not merely useless but positively harmful to the world, because of the scandal given by such a deficiency, therefore charity requires, and humility allows, us to desire and to maintain a good reputation with care.
Moreover, just as the leaves of a tree are valuable, not merely for beauty’s sake, but also as a shelter to the tender fruit, so a good reputation, if not in itself very important, is still very useful, not only as an embellishment of life, but as a protection to our virtues, especially to those which are weakly. The necessity for acting up to our reputation, and being what we are thought to be, brings a strong though kindly motive power to bear upon a generous disposition. Let us foster all our virtues, my daughter, because they are pleasing to God, the Chief Aim 160of all we do... 
As a rule, indifference to insult and slander is a much more effectual remedy than resentment, wrath, and vengeance. Slander melts away beneath contempt, but indignation seems a sort of acknowledgment of its truth. Crocodiles never meddle with any but those who are afraid of them, and slander only persists in attacking people who are disturbed by it.
An excessive fear of losing reputation indicates mistrust as to its foundations, which are to be found in a good and true life. Those towns where the bridges are built of wood are very uneasy whenever a sign of flood appears, but they who possess stone bridges are not anxious161unless some very unusual storm appears. And so a soul built up on solid Christian foundations can afford to despise the outpour of slanderous tongues, but those who know themselves to be weak are for ever disturbed and uneasy. Be sure, my daughter, that he who seeks to be well thought of by everybody will be esteemed by nobody, and those people deserve to be despised who are anxious to be highly esteemed by ungodly, unworthy men.
Reputation, after all, is but a signboard giving notice where virtue dwells, and virtue itself is always and everywhere preferable. Therefore, if it is said that you are a hypocrite because you are professedly devout, or if you are called a coward because you have forgiven an insult, despise all such accusations. Such judgments are the utterances of foolish men, and you must not give up what is right, even though your reputation suffer, for fruit is better than foliage, that is to say, an inward and spiritual gain is worth all external gains. We may take a jealous care of our reputation, but not idolise it; and while we desire not to displease good men, neither should we seek to please those that are evil....
Let us keep Jesus Christ Crucified always before our eyes; let us go on trustfully and simply, but with 163discretion and wisdom, in His Service, and He will take care of our reputation; if He permits us to lose it, it will only be to give us better things, and to train us in a holy humility, one ounce of which is worth more than a thousand pounds of honour.

--- St Francis de Sales, Introduction to the Devout Life

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Among Women Podcast #55

Among Women #55 talks with Janet Benestad, the Secretariat of Faith Formation and Evangelization in the Archdiocese of Boston.  Together we tackle fears and challenges of becoming evangelizers, growing in the faith, living in a culture that does not always support Christianity, and dealing with being or becoming a Catholic in the face of scandals in the Church.

As we celebrate the Year of the Priest,  Pat shares a segment of The Dialogue from St. Catherine of Siena that describes the priesthood and the reverence we should have toward it... as well as the posture we need to take when priests fail in their mission to be good priests... a timely perspective for the modern age, even tho' it was written in the 14th century!

Good resources for reading are listed, as well as a new website for vocations.

I'm already EXCITED by Magnificat -- Now I'm THRILLED by the APP!!

How do you make a great resource like the Magnificat even better?  You make an APP for it.

Okay, there's Universalis, and others, I know, in terms of Apps.  But Magnificat has been clearly my favorite print resource for years, and now I've got a digital version when I'm in a wi-fi environment, using my iTouch.  (No, I don't have an iPhone yet... trying to keep the family phone bill down during these college-payin' years. Let's not even talk about the iPad... but I digress.)

What's not to love?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Helping to give a soul to the Internet....

From Pope Benedict XVI this week: 

"Without fear we must set sail on the digital sea facing into the deep with the same passion that has governed the ship of the Church for two thousand years. Rather than for, albeit necessary, technical resources, we want to qualify ourselves by living in the digital world with a believer’s heart, helping to give a soul to the Internet’s incessant flow of communication". 

More here.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Among Women Podcast #54

This week's podcast features a discussion centered on ways to live out the liturgical year in your home and parish.  Pat's guests are Anne Gray and Barbara Whitlock who share their ideas and experiences from their newly launched blog, Living the Liturgical Year.

Pat also teaches about the life of Mary's mom, St Anne, and the Church Father's ideas about the sun and the moon in the mysterium lunae.  

This is the last week to take the Among Women Survey!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Our One and Only

begins to unpack the first line of the Creed as we find it in the Catechism.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

This makes me think...

In a certain sense Mary lived her Eucharistic faith even before the institution of the Eucharist, by the very fact that she offered her virginal womb for the Incarnation of God's Word. The Eucharist, while commemorating the passion and resurrection, is also in continuity with the incarnation. At the Annunciation Mary conceived the Son of God in the physical reality of his body and blood, thus anticipating within herself what to some degree happens sacramentally in every believer who receives, under the signs of bread and wine, the Lord's body and blood.

As a result, there is a profound analogy between the Fiat which Mary said in reply to the angel, and the Amen which every believer says when receiving the body of the Lord. 

Mary was asked to believe that the One whom she conceived “through the Holy Spirit” was “the Son of God” (Lk 1:30-35). In continuity with the Virgin's faith, in the Eucharistic mystery we are asked to believe that the same Jesus Christ, Son of God and Son of Mary, becomes present in his full humanity and divinity under the signs of bread and wine.

“Blessed is she who believed” (Lk 1:45). Mary also anticipated, in the mystery of the incarnation, the Church's Eucharistic faith. When, at the Visitation, she bore in her womb the Word made flesh, she became in some way a “tabernacle” – the first “tabernacle” in history – in which the Son of God, still invisible to our human gaze, allowed himself to be adored by Elizabeth, radiating his light as it were through the eyes and the voice of Mary. And is not the enraptured gaze of Mary as she contemplated the face of the newborn Christ and cradled him in her arms that unparalleled model of love which should inspire us every time we receive Eucharistic communion?

----John Paul II, ECCLESIA DE EUCHARISTIA, "On the Eucharist in its Relationship to the Church"par. 55.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Where is she? -- A note from Pat

Hi!  I'm on the road this week doing college "shopping" with Peter the piano-playing fencer, you've heard me talk about him....  seems like its impossible to load this week's show over the networks I'm using...  sooo, this week's episode will probably show up late Thursday. Thanks for your patience.

Keep sending in that feedback for a chance to win a coffee mug!

Hope you are having a great week!


Friday, April 16, 2010

What's in a Name?

In this Sunday's First Reading from Acts 5:27-32, 40b-41, we see the Apostles, who are grateful that they were worthy to suffer for the Name. 

Here's a snippet:

The name of Jesus in Hebrew means “God saves.”  The name announces both his identity and his mission. It was indeed, Jesus’ mission to save humanity from its sins.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church further describes the name in CCC 432:
The name “Jesus” signifies that the very name of God is present in the person of his Son, made man for the universal and definitive redemption from sins. It is the divine name that alone brings salvation, and henceforth all can invoke his name, for Jesus united himself to all men through his Incarnation, so that “there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved [Cf. Acts 4:12; 9:14; Jas 2:7.]“
Just as the name of Jesus announces his identity and mission, the name of “Christian” should announce our own identity and mission.  This starts with Baptism.

Read the rest of my latest article in the Embracing the Catechism series over on Today's Catholic Woman. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Launching A Son: A Mom Reflects

Ok, so humor me a bit...

A long, long time ago...

in a galaxy far far away...

before I was a mother of three, I was a mother to one.

That's a photo of Bob and I holding little Bobby way back in Easter '88.

Bobby graduates college next month and is "moving out".

That's what this article is all about.  (Nod your head if you'd been there, done this.)  

Here's a snippet:
Slowly, year by year, our children learn to walk on their own, in so many different ways.  Still more importantly, they really can learn to obey the voice that is heard from within their own heart. And we must revere what God may be telling them, where he might lead them. 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Among Women Podcast #53

Among Women #53 features the second half of the temperaments discussion with Laraine Bennett, co-author with her husband of The Temperament God Gave You. This week, we're looking at the spiritual applications gained by knowledge of the temperaments.

"Blessed Are They" features St. Bernadette Soubirous, the youthful saint at Lourdes who was humble and obedient. Her feast day is this week on April 16th.

And we are still giving away Among Women coffee mugs in a random drawing -- put your name in by leaving Pat feedback at FaceBook or at

Take the Among Women Survey: Our first year in review.

Answer 10 questions in under 5 minutes. Anonymously.

Let this Among Women Survey review the first 50 episodes, and help shape the next 50!

The poll will only be available until April 23rd, so do it today! If you listen, let me know!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Everything You Need to Know About Divine Mercy

Today is a relatively "new" feast in the Church (est. 2000 by John Paul II), the Divine Mercy Sunday.

Everything you could possibly want to know about it is found in this comprehensive website by the Marians who work with the National Shrine of Divine Mercy.  
Check it out here.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

OH MY! She's gooooood! Must see! (Less than 2 minutes!)

Novena for the Pope

Recommended by the Knights of Columbus, to start tomorrow, Divine Mercy Sunday, and continue through April 19th - the 5th anniversary of the pontiff's election.  Bless you, Papa Benedict! Here's the prayer card designed by the K of C for the occasion:

Friday, April 9, 2010

This Sunday, Thomas has a Divine Mercy encounter with a Glorified Body...

Divine Mercy Sunday and the doubting Thomas are the subject of my latest installment of "Embracing the Catechism" over at Catholic Exchange.  Find out what the Glorified Body of the Risen Lord means for us! Its more than just a cool story, its a amazing reality that should transform our thinking about eternity.


I've recorded a few comments in episode 52 of Among Women regarding all the headlines that have surfaced in recent weeks regarding more scandals in the Catholic Church worldwide. But my comments boil down to I remain a committed Catholic, even though there are scandals in the Church. I do because I  believe in Jesus Christ. And the Catholic Church is where I find the Person of Jesus Christ, both in the Eucharist and in the community of faith. It is Jesus who longs to renew me and heal me, as he longs to do the same for every person on the planet. Jesus is wedded to the Bride of Christ, his Church, for better or for worse. And despite the sinful, wayward, and corrupt members of this Church (some who may deservedly need prosecution under the law)... it was exactly for those that he died and rose. His Spirit, despite appearances, continues to renew and lead the Church, for I have seen how good can triumph over evil.

Indeed, there are better defenders of the Faith than I am in this regard, and I've posted a few articles of note in the sidebar over on the right, under the heading "It Caught My Attention." So if you like, take a few minutes to peruse 'em.

But I'd like to bring your attention to an older homily by Father Roger Landry of the Fall River Diocese in Massachusetts.  It moved me in 2002 when scandalous things broke loose in the Archdiocese of Boston where I live, and it moves me again still now, to have courage to do what I can to stay faithful to Christ and the Church.

Here's a snippet below, but you can read the full homily here.

The only adequate response to this terrible scandal, the only fully Catholic response to this scandal — as St. Francis of Assisi recognized in the 1200s, as St. Francis de Sales recognized in the 1600s, and as countless other saints have recognized in every century — is HOLINESS! Every crisis that the Church faces, every crisis that the world faces, is a crisis of saints. Holiness is crucial, because it is the real face of the Church.
There are always people — a priest meets them regularly, you probably know several of them — who use excuses for why they don't practice the faith, why they slowly commit spiritual suicide. It can be because a nun was mean to them when they were nine. Or because they don't understand the teaching of the Church on a particular issue. There will doubtless be many people these days — and you will probably meet them — who will say, "Why should I practice the faith, why should I go to Church, since the Church can't be true if God's so-called chosen ones can do the types of things we've been reading about?" This scandal is a huge hanger on which some will try to hang their justification for not practicing the faith. That's why holiness is so important.
They need to find in all of us a reason for faith, a reason for hope, a reason for responding with love to the love of the Lord. The beatitudes which we have in today's Gospel are a recipe for holiness. We all need to live them more. Do priests have to become holier? They sure do. Do religious brothers and sisters have to become holier and give ever greater witness of God and heaven? Absolutely. But all people in the Church do, including lay people! We all have the vocation to be holy and this crisis is a wake-up call.
It's a tough time to be a priest today. It's a tough time to be a Catholic today. But it's also a great time to be a priest and a great time to be a Catholic. Jesus says in the beatitudes we heard today, "Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of slander against you falsely because of me. Be glad and rejoice, for your reward in heaven is great." I've been experiencing that beatitude first hand, as some priests I know have as well. Earlier this week, when I finished up my exercise at a local gym, I was coming out of the locker room dressed in my black clerical garb. A mother, upon seeing me, immediately and hurriedly moved her children out of the way and shielded them from me as I was passing. She looked at me as I passed and when I had gone far enough along finally relaxed and let her children go — as if I would have attacked her children in the middle of the afternoon at a health club!
But while we all might have to suffer such insults and slander falsely on account of Christ, we should indeed rejoice. It's a great time to be a Christian, because this is a time in which God really needs us to show off his true face. In bygone days in America, the Church was respected. Priests were respected. The Church had a reputation for holiness and goodness. It's not so any more.
One of the greatest Catholic preachers in American history, Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, used to say, that he preferred to live in times when the Church has suffered rather than thrived, when the Church had to struggle, when the Church had to go against the culture. It was a time for real men and real women to stand up and be counted. "Even dead bodies can float downstream," he used to say, pointing that many people can coast when the Church is respected, "but it takes a real man, a real woman, to swim against the current."
How true that is! It takes a real man and a real woman to stand up now and swim against the current that is flowing against the Church. It takes a real man and a real woman to recognize that when swimming against the flood of criticism, you're safest when you stay attached to the Rock on whom Christ built his Church. This is one of those times. It's a great time to be a Christian.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Worth Repeating....

HT: Lisa at Catholic Mom.

My latest over at Faith and Family Live...

is about the central mystery of our faith. Check it out.

Oh, and if you stop by, offer your good wishes to Rachel Balducci who just gave birth to a ... (I'll let you read it here.)   Happiness and prayers for the Balducci's!

This makes me think...

The proudest boast of the human race is an unknown virgin of Nazareth. The Sovereign Lord of the universe lies in manger in Bethlehem. The redemption of the whole world is accomplished between two thieves. The Risen Lord comes to us in the humble elements of bread and wine. The divine power to forgive sins is entrusted to sinful men themselves. This is the sacramental economy, in which the most extraordinary things are accomplished in the most ordinary way.

---Cardinal William Levada, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith at the Curia.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Among Women Podcast #52

This week's Among Women discusses the coming of Divine Mercy Sunday as it intersects the current struggles of the church in the world during the Easter season.

This week we also meet St. Julie Billiart, whose feast day is April 8th.
We also meet author of The Temperament God Gave You, Laraine Bennett, as we discuss temperaments and how knowledge of them can help us have better relationships with family members, friends and co-workers.  This is part 1 of a 2-part interview.

Get your name in the free drawing for the new Among Women coffee mug by sending Pat an email at, or by sending a FaceBook message to Pat Gohn or at our group Among Women Podcast Friends.

Monday, April 5, 2010

My latest on Today's Catholic Woman... a challenge to read about all the post-resurrection appearances of Jesus.  And on the third day, he rose again.

Go meet Jesus again through the eyewitnesses who saw him first from the grave, and in the thrilling days that followed.

Keep the Easter joy alive by delving deep into the word. Full accounts can be linked from the article.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

on the first day of the week 
Mary Mag'dalene came to the tomb early,
 while it was still dark
and saw that 
the stone had been taken away 
from the tomb.  

John 21:1
Let us too be witnesses to that great event in our lives!

He is risen!  Alleluia!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Conversion Story: from Jehovah's witness to Catholic

Mary Kochan, senior editor over at Catholic Exchange, reveals a portion of her testimony in this article.

Here's a snippet:

This is my 16th Easter.
For the first 38 years of my life I did not celebrate Easter because I was one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, a pseudo- Christian group with a very strange economy of salvation. It is not easy to describe life in a cult like Jehovah’s Witnesses. It is very dark. Even their light is darkness.
Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in the Trinity, so they do not believe in the deity of Christ.  They believe that Jesus was Michael the Archangel before he came to earth, and that after he was resurrected, he went back to being Michael the Archangel — but with the name “Jesus.”  They do believe Jesus died (but not on a cross) to save mankind from sin and death by atoning for the disobedience of Adam.  Jesus had to be a perfect man, to match Adam in every respect, and thus he takes Adam’s place as our father.  I know this is weird — not to mention the whole ontological problem of how he is an angel, then a human, and then an angel again — but I’m telling you about it because I want you to know that I had an idea that I could call myself a Christian and believe Jesus died for me, without conceiving of Jesus as God.
Most of you reading this are like my grandchildren who have heard all their lives that Jesus died for you and that Jesus is God the Son –- true God from true God.  It has never dawned on you, because it was always the light that you lived in.
But it dawned on me.

Read the rest, here.

Confidential to Mary: enjoy a "sweet 16!" ~Peace & joy,  Pat

Holy Saturday: This makes me think...

Here's a portion of Pope Benedict's Homily from Easter Vigil, 2007 (emphasis mine):
Let us return once more to the night of Holy Saturday. In the Creed we say about Christ’s journey that he “descended into hell.” What happened then? Since we have no knowledge of the world of death, we can only imagine his triumph over death with the help of images which remain very inadequate. Yet, inadequate as they are, they can help us to understand something of the mystery. The liturgy applies to Jesus’ descent into the night of death the words of Psalm23[24]: “Lift up your heads, O gates; be lifted up, O ancient doors!” The gates of death are closed, no one can return from there. There is no key for those iron doors. But Christ has the key. His Cross opens wide the gates of death, the stern doors. They are barred no longer. His Cross, his radical love, is the key that opens them. The love of the One who, though God, became man in order to die – this love has the power to open those doors. This love is stronger than death. 
The Easter icons of the Oriental Church show how Christ enters the world of the dead. He is clothed with light, for God is light. “The night is bright as the day, the darkness is as light” (cf. Ps 138[139]12). 
Entering the world of the dead, Jesus bears the stigmata, the signs of his passion: his wounds, his suffering, have become power: they are love that conquers death. He meets Adam and all the men and women waiting in the night of death. As we look at them, we can hear an echo of the prayer of Jonah: “Out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice” (Jn 2:2). In the incarnation, the Son of God became one with human beings – with Adam. But only at this moment, when he accomplishes the supreme act of love by descending into the night of death, does he bring the journey of the incarnation to its completion. By his death he now clasps the hand of Adam, of every man and woman who awaits him, and brings them to the light.
Holy Saturday is like the painful pause after the death of a person you love. There's a need to hold on and yet a need to let go.  I am really moved by Benedict's description of Jesus clasping the hand of Adam in the place of the dead... that Jesus goes there to meet Adam, and all those who await him.  Then he brings them to light.

It is because of this, that Catholics begin our Easter Vigil in the darkness... and Jesus meets us there and pulls us into the light.

And now... another thought or two about the Holy-Saturday-to-Easter-light from Chris Tomlin, a very popular Christian writer of worship music... (its not as deep a teaching as Benedict's, but it is much along those lines.)

Friday, April 2, 2010


The victory that Christ won over sin has given us greater blessings 
than those which sin had taken from us. 

-- Catechism of the Catholic Church 420.

Good Friday answers: How Deep the Father's Love For Us?

All I can say is "Thank You, Jesus..."

Video on the Shroud of Turin

For an short 3-minute study on the Shroud of Turin, and the on-going scientific investigation on what many consider to be burial cloth of Jesus, go here.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The new Roman Missal (click & learn about the coming changes):

Watch Catholic TV here! Find Women's programs: "WINGs" and "Woman at the Heart of the Church"

A Lovely Reminder for Every Day

Coffee drinkers! Support AW by drinking Mystic Monk Coffee!

Ship a Cake, and Share a Blessing