Author Archives: Gretchen


About Gretchen

Gretchen is a recent convert and completely in love with the Catholic faith. She is very active in her parish and has recently joined the Lay Dominicans. She has special interests in theology, Thomistic philosophy, & politics. She holds an M.A. in Christian Apologetics & currently works on copywriting and social media for The Catholic Company.

Holy Smokes: Why Catholics Use Incense in Worship

At Mass and other liturgical services we see the altar servers and priests swinging censers, sending clouds of incense wafting through the air. In Catholic liturgy, everything symbolizes a theological truth.

So, what does incense symbolize?

Incense has been used in Christian liturgy from its earliest centuries. In fact, it was a part of the Jewish tradition that came before it, a use that was commanded by God himself and recorded in Sacred Scripture. Continue reading

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Interview with Brian Burch & Emily Stimpson on their New Book, The American Catholic Almanac

Brian Burch and Emily Stimpson answer questions about their new book entitled, The American Catholic Almanac, a collection of inspiring stories of famous Catholic figures, their influence on American history, culture and politics, and the contributions shaped by their Catholic faith. Continue reading

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Three Novena Prayers to St. Therese of Lisieux

Three novena prayers to St. Therese of Lisieux, “The Little Flower.” Continue reading

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Interview with Cardinal Wuerl on his New Book, The Feasts: How the Church Year Forms Us as Catholics

Cardinal Wuerl answers questions about his new book authored with Mike Aquilina entitled, The Feasts: How the Church Year Forms Us as Catholics.
In The Feasts, Cardinal Wuerl and Aquilina explore the festivities in the calendar of Catholic holidays. From Christmas to Easter, the Feast of the Guardian Angels to the Pentecost, the authors reintroduce readers to the true beauty and meaning of each centuries-old celebration. Continue reading

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How to “Choose” a Patron Saint

Are you looking for a Patron Saint or heavenly intercessor? We receive emails nearly every week asking how to go about choosing a Patron Saint. Not everyone has a given name that is both Christian and shared with a heavenly protector. Your Name Saint is a beginning, but having other Patron Saints is a beautiful way to grow in the Faith.

The Saints are an incredible treasure of the Church, and they are our heavenly family. They have walked where we walk, and they have lived the struggles of this world. They rejoice as they await our arrival in eternity, and they share in the desire to help us reach heaven. Most Catholics have numerous “favorites” and patrons. Continue reading

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UPDATED: 9 New Catholic Gifts with the Nun (ن) Symbol

In the writings of the early Church Fathers we find that the first Christians, before they received the name “Christians,” were commonly called “Nazarenes” by their Jewish neighbors because they were followers of Jesus of Nazareth (Acts 24:5).

The Arabic letter Nun (ن) is the first letter of the word Nasara (Nazarenes), a derogatory term that Muslims have still used for centuries to refer to Christians. Continue reading

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6 Ways to Deepen Your Relationship with Your Patron Saint

Cultivating a deeper relationship with your patron saint(s) is one way to grow in your faith and in communion with the Church of the past and the present. These intimate friendships help connect us to heaven, even as we struggle down here below. It is a great consolation to know that we have the heavenly court urging us on and interceding for us before the throne of God. Here are 6 ways to deepen your relationships with your special Patron Saints: Continue reading

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What Do You Love Most About Being Catholic? Our Facebook Fans Respond

Last week we shared a post on our Facebook page asking our fans what they love most about being Catholic. We received over 2,000 comments!
To put a spring in your Catholic step and to find out what your brothers and sisters in Christ appreciate about your shared faith, take a moment to read through a handful of them. Continue reading

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Prayer is Stronger than the Atom Bomb

“Prayer is more powerful than the atom bomb.” — Fr. Hubert Schiffer, Hiroshima survivor August 2014 marks the 69th anniversary of the atom bomb dropping on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, initiating the end of World War II. You may … Continue reading

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8 Ways to use Holy Water

When we read this quote from St. Teresa of Avila, we should be reminded of the importance of holy water. As a recalling of our baptism and our baptismal promises, Catholics dip their fingers in the holy water and make the sign of the cross when entering the church. Our baptismal promises included renouncing Satan and disdaining sin. However, I think that most of the time we take holy water for granted. Because we use it so regularly, it’s any easy thing to do. Continue reading

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