A Catholic Girl's Guide to Jane Austen

6 Reasons She's My Favorite Author

12/16/2011 Comments (15)

– Wikipedia

I am a Jane Austen fan.

I have read her novels multiple times and enjoy watching the movie adaptations.

So I am celebrating the beloved author on her 236th birthday today, Dec. 16, and the 200th-year anniversary of the publication of Sense and Sensibility.

I applaud that her books reflect concepts of true love and virtue and faith.

Her writing has stood the test of time for good reason.

For me, these are six reasons to read Austen’s novels:

1. Pride and Prejudice‘s Lesson: People can change. And love prompts good actions.
2. Sense and Sensibility‘s Lesson: A balance of sense and sensibility is needed in love and life.
3. Persuasion‘s Lesson: True love waits; love never fails (see...READ MORE

Filed under faith, jane austen, literature, virtue

Love Is Coming

But First We Celebrate Advent

12/01/2011 Comments (1)

– Shutterstock

As a child I looked forward to the appearance of my family’s Advent calendar on Dec. 1.

Each day my sister and I would take turns taking the plush Velcro items out of their pockets and affixing them to the appropriate spots in the countdown to Christmas. Teddy bears, presents and candles etc. all took turns.

The closer we got to Christmas, the more filled the family keepsake became — a tangible reminder that Jesus’ birthday was getting closer.

I still have the Advent calendar; it is still a key part of my preparations. It is a part of many Christians’ preparations (I even saw make-your-own Advent calendar ideas in a recent issue of Martha Stewart Living) for a reason.

The Register is...READ MORE

Filed under advent, advent calendars, christmas, countdown to christmas, jesus' birthday, waiting for christmas

St. Gianna's Daughter Visits U.S.

'All my mom's life has been a hymn to life.'

07/12/2011 Comments (3)
via St. Gianna's Facebook page

This picture of St. Gianna was enshrined in the Priests for Life office.

– via St. Gianna's Facebook page

Dr. Gianna Emanuela Molla, the daughter of St. Gianna Beretta Molla, visited Priests for Life’s headquarters yesterday, July 11.

She brought with her a photo and relic (a piece of cloth) of her mother, who is regarded as a patron saint for pro-lifers.

“God loved my mother very much,” Molla told the staff. She added: “God chose her among many saint mothers. There must be many saint mothers in paradise.”

“I would not be here with you if I had not been loved so much,” shared Molla, who lives near Milan, Italy. Her saintly mother gave her own life so that she could live. (For more on St. Gianna’s life, see my last blog post.)

“All my mom’s life has been a hymn to life,” Molla said. “She...READ MORE

Filed under priests for life, pro-life, st. gianna

Easter, St. Gianna and Blessed John Paul

04/28/2011 Comments (1)
CNS photo

– CNS photo

“Christ my hope is arisen!” John Paul II was a living witness to Easter joy and the Divine Mercy message, all of which we celebrate at his beatification this weekend.

I never went to World Youth Day, but John Paul’s writing was a focus of a marriage and family class I took in college, and his teaching was prominent at my college Newman Center (St. John’s Catholic Newman Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), in my life and the lives of all of my young adult Catholic friends who are participating in all sorts of ways in the New Evangelization: as journalists, Catholic teachers (including my sister), Focus (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) missionaries,...READ MORE

Filed under easter, john paul ii, new evangelization, newman centers, st. gianna

Snail Mail and Dates With Jesus

03/24/2011 Comments (12)

– Shutterstock

I admit it: I like snail mail.

Plenty of people have been musing on its pros and cons in light of the recent news that the U.S. Postal Service will be closing a couple thousand of its post offices. I am a fan.

I love cute stationery (preferably with daisies), thank-you notes and sending Christmas cards.

There’s something about mailing something that brings a smile to my face because I know receiving it will bring a smile to someone else’s. The surprise of a card (or gift or even a magazine) in the mail is one of life’s simple blessings. That birthday greeting means more when it’s via mail, in my opinion.

Staying in touch with people can be a challenge nowadays. (Most Register employees...READ MORE

Filed under adoration, catholicism, eucharist, faith, lent, mail, mass

God's Guide to Love

Thoughts for Valentine's Day

02/14/2011 Comments (3)

– Shutterstock

God gave us the best — and original — love letter (the Bible), as well as instructions (Ten Commandments) and companion manual (Catechism). He knows love because he is love.

As St. Paul wrote in Romans 8:38-39, “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

The Little Flower wrote of how loving God helps us love others: “I can see with joy that in loving him the heart expands and can give to those who are dear to it incomparably more tenderness than if it had concentrated upon...READ MORE

Filed under deus caritas est, god is love, love, pope benedict xvi, saints, valentine's day

Remembering Lourdes

02/11/2011 Comments (2)

– Wikipedia

Wishing you a blessed feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.

Enjoy the trailer of Navis Pictures’ St. Bernadette of Lourdes, which we highlighted in an article last spring.

My old favorite is always The Song of Bernadette. The poster art was done by Norman Rockwell. Some clips are featured in this Rome Reports video about the Lourdes apparitions.

Our Lady, pray for us.

And as St. Bernadette said, “Oh my Mother, to you I sacrifice all other attachments so that my heart may belong entirely to you and to my Jesus.”

Filed under apparitions, navis pictures, our lady of lourdes, song of bernadette

Renewing Catholic Literature

Dappled Things magazine turns 5.

02/09/2011 Comments (2)

“Glory be to God for dappled things.”

That’s from “Pied Beauty” by Victorian poet and Jesuit Gerard Manley Hopkins —  and the inspiration for the name of the Catholic literary magazine Dappled Things, which just turned five.

The magazine redesigned its website and has a special (free) commemorative edition online for its anniversary.

Ivy League Catholic students founded the magazine as an online-only publication. They wanted to renew the literary tradition that brought about the work of Catholic authors like J.R.R. Tolkien and Flannery O’Connor. The first print edition was published in June 2007.

“The editors hope the new site will make a significant contribution to the future of...READ MORE

Filed under catholic literature, dappled things, g.k. chesterton, jane austen

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About Amy Smith

Amy Smith
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Amy Smith is the Register's associate editor. She started writing about everything from Jane Austen to saints for the Register in 2005 and joined the staff as copy editor in 2008. Her writing has appeared in various other Catholic publications. She has a master’s degree in journalism and a B.A. in English.