**Update 10/5/2015: WINNERS ANNOUNCED! Kate G. wins the St. Maximillian Kolbe book, Caroline wins the Karol book, and Ashley wins the St. Louis de Montfort book! I will be in touch with you today, ladies! Congratulations!**
Last month, I was email chatting with TAN Homeschool (have you discovered them yet? You must!), and they offered to send me some books to read with my family when we take a break from formal lessons soon. I am not crazy, you know, and will be breaking from most homeschooling for a good 2-3 weeks when Baby 6 is born. Seeing as I will be recovering, and nursing the sweet babe around the clock, there will be a heavy amount of couch-time. Perfect for read-alouds!
I love a good saint story, and love learning about “new” saints. These guys aren’t all new to the official roster of saints, but they are new to me. I have heard of St. Maximillian, and heard of St. Louis de Montfort, but I didn’t before know much about them. St. John Paul II, well, I know him. Seeing him twice in person from less than 20 feet counts, right? Right? Anyway, I know a good deal about JPII. Still, this story of his life as Karol is a new perspective and sweet narrative of the boy Karol who became a beloved pope.
St. Maximillian Kolbe touched my heart as I read his story. His love for Mary, trust in her protection over him, and childlike obedience to Jesus’ will through His Mother are examples for anyone to learn from. I marked pages to revisit again, and to make notes of for quotes or further discussion with my girls. This new friendship I have with St. Max will hopefully bring our whole family closer to Jeus by following St. Maximillian’s joyful and hopeful obedience. Some other plans I have for our “couch-schooling” days while we read this biography include painting peg dolls of St. Maximillian, praying for victims of the Holocaust, and praying for the world’s current refugees.
Next up, St. Louis de Montfort by Mary Fabyan Windeatt. Here is the story of the young priest who dedicated his entire life, every day, and every action to Jesus through Mary. He is known for the True Devotion and Consecration to Jesus through Mary, promoting the Rosary, and serving Mary. Windeatt’s saint stories are always a pleasure to read, because she tells the saint’s life in a way that you feel as if you really are getting to know them. St. Louis de Montfort once seemed like a saint for adults to me, from the little I knew about him, but now, I see how his simple (though profound) devotion to Our Lady can be accessible to children and young people as well. The story may inspire some to follow St. Louis’ consecration, but even more, I hope it will inspire my children to love our Lady just a little more, and to understand that Jesus invites us to know His Mother and serve Him with her help.
Finally, in October, just in time for Pope Saint John Paul II’s feast day on the 22nd, we will read “Karol, the Boy Who Became Pope”. This is a delightful read that brings to life the younger years of Karol Wojtyla. JPII is already a favorite in our family, but this book is sure to delight us and I hope help my boys see that even a fun-loving, adventurous boy can love Jesus joyfully. By the time his feast day arrives, I hope we’ll be so excited to celebrate him that we don’t let tiredness with a newborn get in the way of a few fun activities and a festive meal for our family’s patron!
Don’t you want to read one of these stories now, and get to know a great saint? You can! TAN Homeschool partnered with me, and three of you will win one of these books!