Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers
by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle
Huntington, IN: Our Sunday Visitor, 2005
Reviewed by Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur
As mothers, it is often hard to find time to pray, yet prayer is so essential to
our lives. Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle, a mother of five children, understands
this and wrote "Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers" as a way to help meet that
The first thing that strikes you when you meet this book is its size and design.
It is small, meant to tuck neatly into a purse or diaper bag, an on-the-go
reminder that God comes first and is there to help us in our daily lives. The
pages are also beautifully designed with soft background images. One can't help
but feel calmer and more centered just appreciating the pages. The true value of
this book, however, are the words on the pages. Cooper O'Boyle has combined
classic prayers (for example, one will find the Memorare of St. Bernard and the
Prayer to St. Michael) with quotes from the Bible and spiritual giants such as
St. Thomas Aquinas and Blessed Teresa of Calcutta with her own original prayers
In Chapter Nine "Prayerful Days" Cooper O'Boyle writes of the need to make our
everyday life a prayer. "Jesus was known to retreat from the crowds often to
pray in solitude, usually on a mountain or in a desert, preferably at night. As
mothers, most times we don't have the opportunity to sneak away or retreat to
solitude. We know that the care of our family is pretty much all-consuming, and
while we cannot go off to the mountain or the desert, we can strive to find the
mountain and desert moments in our lives, even in the midst of the busyness.
Capture these moments and use them prayerfully." Cooper O'Boyle's prayers and
reflections are moving and honest. She understands the pressures that mothers
are under as well as the joys and sorrows they face. Her words tug at the heart
and raise the mind to focus on God.
"Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers" is designed for mothers at all stages of the
journey. It would be a wonderful gift for any Catholic mother in need of
Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur is editor of http://www.spiritualwoman.net and the corresponding blog http://spiritualwomanthoughts.blogspot.com
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