Wednesday 3 February 2021

52 Weeks with Saint Faustina - Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle - A Year of Grace and Mercy

52 Weeks with Saint Faustina: 
A Year of Grace and Mercy
ISBN 9781596144880
eISBN 9781596145092

I have been familiar with the name Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle for a while and a few of her books have been on my wish list for a while now. And I doubt there are any Catholics not familiar with the name Saint Faustina and the Divine Mercy, even if it is not part of their personal devotional life. But this was the first volume I have read. I had a physical copy of the book but kept falling behind. Once I picked up the eBook, I found it much easier to stay on track and work my way through the devotions. This book was a fantastic read. Once I really got going though it was hard to limit my reading and not just keep reading ahead. 

I have yet to tackle the diary of Saint Faustina, but have read a lot about her and Divine Mercy. But this book has inspired me to pick a specific translation and give it a read. This volume is different than many other devotionals I have read, in that it spans a year but does not have daily readings. There are readings for each week, and then an activity to be carried out over the week. The sections in most chapters are?

Week Number
Name for the Week
A Quote from the Diary of Saint Faustina
Something to Ponder
A Merciful Action
A Prayer for the Week

A sample from week 5 of:

A Merciful Action 

Take some time to reflect on who might feel lost or, in some sense, in darkness and need a helping heart and hand. Do your best to encourage that person or family in some way. For inspiration in deciding upon your merciful actions this week, refer to the “How to Use This Book” section to see the description of deeds of mercy that Jesus gave to Sr. Faustina.”

And a sample prayer from week 8:

A Prayer of Mercy for This Week
(To be prayed each day this week.)

Dear Merciful Jesus, thank You for the
gift of Your mother, Mary.
Help me to get closer to her and learn from
her. Thank You for Your great love!
Saint Faustina, please pray for me.
Jesus, I trust in You!
Mary, Mother of Jesus, be Mother to me now.

This is one of those devotionals that could be read again and again, and with each reading something new be received from it. A new inspiration, a new understanding, a new purpose, or motivation to action. But it is also a book that can be returned to from time to tome. Picking specific chapters or random chapters. You could read a chapter relevant to what is going on, or a random one for new inspiration.

The book is very well written and engaging. Anyone would benefit from reading this volume. It would be great for teens, young adults, and adults of all ages. We can all benefit from learning more about mercy and learning to live it. It is immensely engaging. A wonderful read for all Catholics. 

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2021 Catholic Reading Plan!
Other books about Divine Mercy and Saint Faustina:

Books by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle:
Advent with Our Lady of Fatima
Advent with Saint Teresa of Calcutta
Angels for Kids
Bringing Lent Home with Mother Teresa
Bringing Lent Home with Pope Francis
Bringing Lent Home with St. John Paul II
Bringing Lent Home with St. Therese of Lisieux
By Dawn's Early Light: Prayers and Meditations for Catholic Military Wives
Catholic Mom's Cafe: 5-Minute Retreats for Every Day of the Year
Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers
Catholic Saints Prayer Book: Moments of Inspiration from Your Favorite Saints
Catholic Wisdom for a Mother's Heart
A Catholic Woman's Book of Prayers
The Domestic Church: Room by Room: A Study Guide for Mothers
Embracing Motherhood
Family Consecration to Jesus through Mary
Feeding Your Family's Soul: Dinner Table Spirituality
Grace Cafe: Serving Up Recipes for Faithful Mothering
The Heart of Catholicism
The Heart of Motherhood: Finding Holiness in the Catholic Home
The Kiss of Jesus: How Mother Teresa and the Saints Helped Me to Discover the Beauty of the Cross
The Miraculous Medal: Stories, Prayers, and Devotions
Mother Teresa and Me: Ten Years of Friendship
My Confirmation
Our Lady of Fatima: 100 Years of Stories, Prayers, and Devotions
Our Lady's Message to Three Shepherd Children and the World
Prayerfully Expecting: A Nine-Month Novena for Mothers to Be
Prayerfully Waiting: A Catholic Grandmother's Prayer Journal
Reclaiming Sundays: Pray, Play, Serve, Rest, Refresh, and Celebrate
Rooted in Love: Our Calling as Catholic Women
Small Things With Great Love: A 9-Day Novena to Mother Teresa, Saint of the Gutters

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