Why Be An Atheist If??? by Sebastian Mahfood and Ronda Chervin

Why Be An Atheist If??? by Sebastian Mahfood and Ronda Chervin

Why Be An Atheist If???

by Sebastian Mahfood and Ronda Chervin

  • Who is an atheist? A person who is convinced that there is no God.
  • Who is an agnostic? A person who thinks there is no way to know if there is a God or there is not a God.
  • Who is a doubter? Usually a person raised to think there is a God who is not sure if that is true.
  • Who is a seeker? A person who is open to belief in any reality that others present as truly real.
  • Who is a theist? A person who is convinced that there is a God.

Why Be An Atheist If??? is an adaptation of Catholic Realism put together primarily for atheists but also offering many answers for agnostics, doubters, and seekers. 

Paperback $14.95 paperback | Kindle $9.99

TESTIMONIALS

TBA

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Ronda Chervin has a Ph.D. in philosophy from Fordham University and an M.A. in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. She is a convert to the Catholic faith from a Jewish but atheistic background. She has been a professor at Loyola Marymount University, St. John’s Seminary of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Our Lady of Corpus Christi, and Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Connecticut. More than seventy books of hers have been published by Catholic presses in the area of philosophy and spirituality. Dr. Ronda presents on EWTN and Catholic radio. She is a dedicated widow and grandmother. Her many books include Quotable Saints, Seeking Christ in the Crosses & Joys of AgingCatholic Realism and Voyage to Insight.

Dr. Sebastian Mahfood, OP, is a Lay Dominican of the Queen of the Holy Rosary chapter in the Province of St. Albert the Great. Dr. Mahfood holds a master’s in comparative literature from the University of Texas at Arlington, a master’s in philosophy and a master’s in theology from Holy Apostles College & Seminary, a master’s in educational technology from Webster University and a doctorate in postcolonial literature and theory from Saint Louis University. His many other books include Catholic Realism, Among the Marvelous Things, Missionary Priests in the Homeland, The Narrative Spirituality of Dante’s Divine Comedy, and Radical Eschatologies

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60 Catholics Who Changed the World by Gerard Verschuuren

60 Catholics Who Changed the World

by Gerard M. Verschuuren

The Catholic Church has a longstanding and outstanding tradition that makes for a powerful source of innovations for the world. The sixty Catholics mentioned in this book testify to it. Each one of them made a significant contribution that we can, and do, benefit from every day.

Paperback: $18.95 | Kindle: $9.99

1. ALBERT THE GREAT: SCIENCE & RELIGION
2. ALCUIN OF YORK: SCHOOLS
3. ANGELICA, MARY: MASS COMMUNICATION
4. ANSELM OF CANTERBURY: SLAVERY
5. ATHANASIUS OF ALEXANDRIA: ONE GOD
6. BARAT, MADELEINE-SOPHIE: EDUCATION OF WOMEN
7. BEDE THE VENERABLE: HISTORY
8. BELLARMINE, ROBERT: HUMAN RIGHTS
9. BENEDICT OF NURSIA: HOSPITALS
10. BOSCO, GIOVANNI: URBANIZATION
11. BRANDSMA, TITUS: FREEDOM OF PRESS
12. CAFASSO, JOSEPH: PRISONS
13. CAMILLUS DE LELLIS: RED CROSS
14. CANISIUS, PETER: THE CATECHISM
15. CARREL, ALEXIS: MIRACLES
16. CATHERINE OF SIENA: FEMINISM
17. CHESTERTON, G. K.: COMMON SENSE
18. CLAVER, PETER: SLAVE TRADE
19. CONSTANTINE THE GREAT: A BREAKTHROUGH
20. COPERNICUS, NICOLAUS: HELIOCENTRISM
21. CYRIL AND METHODIUS: THE VERNACULAR
22. DAMIEN DE VEUSTER: LEPROSY
23. DAY, DOROTHY: SOCIAL JUSTICE
24. DOWLING, EDWARD: ADDICTIONS
25. DREXEL, KATHARINE: HUMAN DIVERSITY
26. DUHEM, PIERRE: SCIENCE ROOTS
27. FRANCIS OF ASSISI: MOTHER EARTH
28. FRANCIS XAVIER: MISSIONARIES
29. GONZALEZ, ROQUE: JESUIT REDUCTIONS
30. GREENE, GRAHAM: NOVELS

31. GREGORY THE GREAT: PAPAL AUTHORITY
32. GREGORY VII: CHURCH AND STATE
33. GREGORY XIII: GREGORIAN CALENDAR
34. GUTENBERG, JOHANNES: PRINTING PRESS
35. HIERONYMUS, EUSEBIUS: THE BIBLE
36. HILDEGARD OF BINGEN: USING TALENTS
37. IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH: CATHOLIC OR CHRISTIAN?
38. IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA: GOD’S SOLDIERS
39. ISIDORE OF SEVILLE: SCHOOLING
40. JOHN PAUL II: COMMUNISM 164
41. JUSTIN THE MARTYR: FAITH AND REASON
42. LANDSTEINER, KARL: BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS
43. LEMAÎTRE, GEORGES: BIG BANG
44. LEO XIII: SOCIAL TEACHING
45. LEWIS, C.S.: APOLOGETICS
46. MARITAIN, JACQUES: HUMAN RIGHTS
47. MCCORVEY, NORMA: ABORTION
48. MCLUHAN, MARSHALL: SOCIAL MEDIA
49. MENDEL, GREGOR: GENETICS
50. MORE, THOMAS: RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
51. PASTEUR, LOUIS: MICRO-ORGANISMS
52. PAUL OF TARSUS: APOSTLE WITHOUT BORDERS
53. PAUL VI: SEXUAL REVOLUTION
54. PIUS XII: NOT HITLER’S POPE
55. RYAN, JOHN AUGUSTAN: MINIMUM WAGE
56. SCHUMACHER, E.F.: SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL
57. SEMMELWEIS, IGNAZ: WASHING HANDS
58. SERRA, JUNÍPERO: ONE HUMAN RACE
59. TERESA OF CALCUTTA: WHO ARE THE POOREST?
60. THOMAS AQUINAS: NO DOUBLE TRUTH

TESTIMONIALS

“Taken from various times and places, we have here specifically Catholics who, in their works and lives, have improved the world in one way or another. Many good things need to be invented, begun, organized, or planned. We have here a welcome reflection on who such people are and what they did because of their Catholic outlook on the world.” — Fr.  James V. Schall, S.J. (1928-2019), who was a Professor at Georgetown University.

“These 60 Catholics truly did change the world for the better, and any Catholic can at the least change his or her world for the better. May these 60 give you inspiration in your own life–I know they have in mine!” — Dr. Sebastian Mahfood, OP, co-author with Bishop Richard Henning of Missionary Priests in the Homeland

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Gerard M. Verschuuren is a human geneticist who also earned a doctorate in the philosophy of science. He studied and worked at universities in Europe and the United States. Currently semi-retired, he spends most of his time as a writer, speaker, and consultant on the interface of science and religion, faith and reason.

More information about his life and works may be found on his Wikipedia page at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerard_Verschuuren

A review of Aquinas and Modern Science: A New Synthesis of Faith and Reason, by Gerard M. Verschuuren, has appeared in Volume 57, Issue 4 (December 2017) of the International Philosophical Quarterlyi>, and The Pluralist Game.

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COMING SOON! Contemporary Sacred Art: Conversations on Art & Faith by Dr. Michela Beatrice Ferri In translation now from the Italian. Buy it in the original language here: What is the so-called “Contemporary Sacred Art”? In her book, Michela Beatrice Ferri...

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Inspirational Observations of Our Catholic Faith by Dominic Tarquin

Inspirational Observations of Our Catholic Faith by Dominic Tarquin

Inspirational Observations of Our Catholic Faith

by Dominic Tarquin

 

These writings, inspired by the Holy Spirit, are intended to offer information, encouragement and hope to all Catholics. Each page offers a combination of comments that generate a desire to ponder the true meaning of the Catholic faith and increase our awareness of its many facets.

Paperback: $12.95 | Kindle: $9.99

TESTIMONIALS

“I have known the author now for approximately 15 years and have truly been blessed to have the honor of knowing him. His previous book A Story of Our God and Our Catholic Religion was both uplifting and inspirational. Please continue to allow us to enjoy your wisdom!!” – Barron Fitz-Gerald

“This book truly made me look at my faith and life in a new way through the author’s thought-provoking insights presented in each excerpt.”  – Heather Rustici

“This book should have broad appeal for all of us trying to get to heaven.  Follow the author’s instructions, and you can’t miss. He clarifies everything you learned from grade school in the Baltimore Catechism (which you didn’t understand) up to last Sunday’s homily.” – Ray Spall

“Mr. Tarquin’s book, “Inspirational Observations of our Catholic Faith” is a read that stays with you and is refreshing to the soul.  It gives one encouragement in many facets to do God’s will on a daily basis, while digesting God’s great love for us. The writings extend encouragement in a torn and divided world.” – Nancy Montgomery

“The writings on the pages of Observations of Catholic Faith are a personal guide to help us realize we are God’s creation on earth and we are not here by accident. Our purpose in life is to accomplish the will of the Lord and go to Heaven for eternity with God. Start here . . .”  – Steve Loder

“Dominic’s book reminds all of us of God’s great love for us and how we can grow closer to Him. The writings open the door and lay out the fundamentals of our Catholic faith in a straightforward, conversational, and thought-provoking way.” Jennifer Wicht 

“It is clear that Dominic has a deep and committed relationship with his faith and the Holy Trinity and is eager to share it with all of us.  As someone who has worked in the Catholic Church for many years, teaching children and adults alike about our faith, I would recommend this book especially to those who are relatively new to the faith or those who want to renew their love and commitment concerning Catholicism. As parents begin to bring their children to the sacraments, many want to expand their own knowledge of the faith. There are also adults who are just coming into the faith through RCIA or adults who may have left the church for a time and are now making their way back and have an awakened desire to delve deeper into the meaning of being Catholic. This book gives Catholics a foundation to build on as they explore the many facets of their faith while creating a living. loving relationship with God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.” – Lisa Rustici

“Thought provoking and profound. Dominic Tarquin reminds us that God is with us through every step in life and that God wants us to always rely upon Him and not of the things in this world.” – Mark Morabito

“I’ve always found Dom’s advice inspirational, entertaining and wise. Reading his words is no different. His books are like a caring conversation with a long-time friend.” – Brian Campbell

“Upon reading this book I thought this is something I should be reading every day. I think every Christian should read books just like this one every day. This book helps me to remember why Jesus died, not just for me but for everyone. This is one of those books that when I read it I can’t put it down. It is very inspiring.” – Ron Dougherty

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dominic Tarquin has served in a variety of Catholic Church organizations and volunteer services, including a Christian prison ministry, and has produced various Catholic writings. 

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Short Takes on Catholic Life: Why You Need to Hang In, Even If You Are Wavering, Ed. by Ronda Chervin

Short Takes on Catholic Life: Why You Need to Hang In, Even If You Are Wavering, Ed. by Ronda Chervin

Short Takes on Catholic Life: Why You Need to Hang In, Even If You Are Wavering

Ed. by Dr. Ronda Chervin

Many Catholics have wavered about staying in the Church because of certain personal problems or tragedies they think cannot be reconciled with belief in a God of love. Why did these Catholic not only hang-in but also find in the Church itself the most important answers to those same problems and tragedies? This book provides an answer through the testimonies of 29 Catholic converts, reverts, and challenged faithful, men and women whose stories will resonate with your own. If you’re wavering about your Catholic faith or know someone who is, you’ll find that this book will address the confusion and affirm the truth of our faith.

Paperback $14.95 | Kindle $9.99

TESTIMONIALS

“Ronda Chervin has not only done masterful work preparing for publication the stories of over two dozen Catholics who have held true to their faith in the face of adversity and doubt, but she’s also created a stellar interview series for WCAT Radio which allows the readers to hear the stories of each contributor in his or her own voice. See https://wcatradio.com/whyiamstillcatholic/ (or simply click on the play buttons below) for more!” — Dr. Sebastian Mahfood, OP, contributor and co-author with Ronda Chervin of Catholic Realism: A Framework for the Refutation of Atheism and the Evangelization of Atheists

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ronda Chervin has a Ph.D. in philosophy from Fordham University and an M.A. in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. She is a convert to the Catholic faith from a Jewish but atheistic background. She has been a professor at Loyola Marymount University, St. John’s Seminary of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Our Lady of Corpus Christi, and presently teaches at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Connecticut. More than fifty books of hers have been published by Catholic presses in the area of philosophy and spirituality. Dr. Ronda presents on EWTN and Catholic radio. She is a dedicated widow and grandmother. Her many books include Quotable SaintsHealing Meditations from the Gospel of St. JohnCatholic Realism and Voyage to Insight.

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Philosophy Fridays: Armchair Philosophy Sessions from a High School Physics Classroom

Philosophy Fridays: Armchair Philosophy Sessions from a High School Physics Classroom

Philosophy Fridays: Armchair Philosophy Sessions from a High School Physics Classroom

by Matthew D’Antuono

Aristotle began his great study on causes, which he called Metaphysics, with a simple connection to physics: “All men by nature desire to know. An indication of this is the delight we take in our senses.” High school physics teacher Matt D’Antuono makes a similar connection in his own teaching. While discussing the nature of science with his physics students, Matt pointed out that their topic of conversation was technically not science any more. Instead, when they were talking about the nature of science, they were doing philosophy. The students then wanted Matt to teach them some philosophy, and Philosophy Fridays became a classroom tradition. Everyone will find within this book the kind of practical wisdom that enlightens and engages the young mind in the act of contemplating all the wonders of our world, both physical and metaphysical.

Paperback: $14.99 | Kindle: $9.99

REVIEWS

Pravin Thevathasan, Review, Christendom-Awake. [Coming soon.]

Lauren Lester, Review, Institute for Theological Encounter with Science and Technology, Winter 2020 Bulletin, Vol. 51, 1, pp. 5-6

TESTIMONIALS

“Philosophy is like language in two related ways: it is the expression of an innate and universal curiosity, and it is best learned when we are young. Most philosophers are too busy, or too proud, to write for teenagers, but not Mr. D’Antuono. These dialogs are obviously real, not imagined, as will be clear from anyone with experience with that age group, and it will cause significant increases in both thinking and smiling on both sides of the teaching desk.” – Peter Kreeft, Professor of Philosophy, Boston College

“Our culture is philosophically malnourished.  Not only do many young people lack coherent answers to the great questions of life, they haven’t even asked the questions. A soft nihilism is all they know. Matt D’Antuono has succeeded in something very difficult, getting the young people in his classes to think about what really matters, arousing their hunger for answers, and doing it in a way that is fun for them. A very clever and interesting book by a very good teacher.” – Stephen M. Barr, Professor of Physics, University of Delaware

“Teaching becomes a noble task as Mr. D’Antuono encourages his high school students to ask questions, seek truth and discover beauty. But there is more: like Handel, D’Antuono wishes ‘to make them better.’ Philosophy Fridays achieves its purposes.” – Msgr. Robert Harahan, Headmaster, Seton Hall Preparatory High School 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt D’Antuono is a high school physics teacher who lives in New Jersey with his beautiful wife and eight children.

He holds bachelor’s degrees in physics and philosophy and a master’s degree in special education. He is working on a master’s degree in philosophy at Holy Apostles in Cromwell, CT.

Matthew D’Antuono is a member of the Catholic Speakers Organization, CatholicSpeakers.com.

You can find him on YouTube at DonecRequiescat.

Matt’s column on the National Catholic Register may be found here. A couple of discrete samples are below.

Articles by Matt:

  1. “On the Meaning of ‘Be Yourself.'” The Imaginative Conservative (January 4, 2019)
  2. “Emmet: The Awesome Hebrew Word for Truth.” National Catholic Register (December 18, 2018)
  3. “The Missing Key Piece from Youth Catechesis? It’s Philosophy.” National Catholic Register (November 23, 2018)
  4. Fact or Opinion?”: A False Dichotomy,The Imaginative Conservative (July 24, 2018)
  5. Discovering the Beauty of the Truth,” The Coming Home Network International (April 16, 2018)

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Please choose one of Ronda Chervin’s vintage books for free!

The titles are as follows: Holding Hands with God, Quotable Saints, Seeking Christ in the Joys & Sorrows of Aging, The Fabric of Our Lives, Becoming a Handmaid of the Lord, Voyage to Insight, Feminine, Free and Faithful, and a special treat by Martin Chervin entitled Children of the Breath.

Just click on this Donate button and pay at least $6 postage for each title. We happily accept larger donations to support Ronda’s ministry.

Take the Joy

The Philosophical Spirituality Website of Holy Apostles Professor Emerita, Dr. Ronda Chervin. Contact Dr. Ronda at chervinronda@gmail.com.

Scroll about halfway down the page for the Options for Widows!

Ronda Chervin has a Ph.D. in philosophy from Fordham University and an M.A. in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. She is a convert to the Catholic faith from a Jewish but atheistic background.

Dr. Ronda has been a professor at Loyola Marymount University, St. John’s Seminary of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Our Lady of Corpus Christi, and Holy Apostles in Connecticut. Dr. Ronda presents on EWTN and Catholic radio. She is a dedicated widow and grandmother.

More than sixty books of hers have been published by Catholic presses in the area of philosophy and spirituality. Her many books include Quotable SaintsHealing Meditations from the Gospel of St. JohnCatholic RealismVoyage to InsightWeeping with JesusHealing of Rejection and Escaping Anxiety.

Take the Joy on WCAT Radio

In this radio series, Ronda Chervin offers two musical performances from her son, Charles Chervin, a special series on the spirituality of the emotions, and a series of thoughts from her journal of insights.
Dr. Ronda celebrating her co-authored book with the publisher, Sebastian Mahfood of En Route Books, co-author Al Hughes and Sebastian’s son Alexander! (Photo by Katie Hughes, June, 2018)
See also her Good Reads blog entitled Ronda View.
And her WCAT Radio Shows entitled Ronda View and Why I’m Still Catholic!

Free eBooks

In the collection below, Dr. Ronda shares with her reading audience her thoughts over the course of several decades in a number of books, journals, and blogs.

Written by Dr. Ronda’s Husband, Martin Chervin, and Friend, Charles Rich
For more about Charles, see “From the Spiritual Wisdom of Charles Rich” by Ronda Chervin

“Take the Joy” is a poem written by Diana Jump, daughter of Ronda Chervin. Her twin-sister, Carla, used to always say “Take the Joy” when tragedy threatened. But, then, Carla was diagnosed with severe lymphoma and her family worked on making a video with the poem put to music and played by a friend of Carla together with Carla’s Aunt Carla De Sola, a sacred dancer, choreographing a dance to go with it. We are so happy to share this with you. Carla Conley is still alive 5 years later.

Dedicated Widows of the Holy Family

Prayer of Dedicated Widows of the Holy Family

God the Father,
I offer you the rest of my time on earth
that I may serve with love
and come to eternal life.
May my husband be blessed
on his journey in eternity
and everyone in my family be saved.

Holy Spirit, be a comfort to all widows,
especially the newly bereaved.
Jesus, my bridegroom, savior of my soul, delight of my heart, help me.
Mary, exalted widow, mother of the Church, my model and intercessor; pray for me.
St. Joseph, protector of Mary and the child Jesus, and helper of widows,
guide me in the trials of daily life.
As a widow may I be a spiritual mother to all I meet today.

All you widow saints, pray for me:

St. Monica, pray for me
St. Paula, pray for me
St. Elizabeth of Hungary, pray for me
Bd. Angela of Foligno, pray for me
St. Elizabeth of Portugal, pray for me
St. Bridget of Sweden, pray for me
St. Rita of Cascia, pray for me
St. Frances of Rome, pray for me
St. Catherine of Genoa, pray for me
St. Jane of Chantal, Francis de Sales pray for me
Bd. Marie of the Incarnation, pray for me
St. Louise de Marillac, pray for me
Bd. Marguerite d’Youville, pray for me
St. Elizabeth Seton, pray for me
Servant of God. Praxedes Fernandez, pray for me.
Ven. Conchita of Mexico, pray for me.
All other widows now in heaven,
pray for me.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS FOR WIDOWS – by Ronda Chervin
(from Walk with me, Jesus, Simon Peter Press, 2008)

The First Station: Jesus is Condemned to Death

Mary…

Your Son, who was to be judge of all the living and the dead, stood before a Roman judge and received an unjust sentence. Though you knew He was the ‘suffering servant’ prophesied by Isaiah, did you wonder why He had to suffer this humiliation and in this way?

As widows, we sometimes question God’s providence – and His love for us.

Why did that drunk driver who killed my husband survive?
Why did God permit that doctor’s mistake?
Was there anything done – or left undone – that hastened the day or the hour?
Why did my husband have to die instead of me?

Holy Mary, pray for us … now and in the hour we cry for justice.

Jesus: You are the Lord of my life. I know that You permit only those things from which You can bring good. Help me to trust that even the day and the hour of my husband’s death was known to You, and that he is enfolded in Your Sacred Heart now as then.
The Second Station: Jesus Accepts the Cross

Mary …

Many of us spent long hours at the bedside of our husbands, anticipating the separation that would come. Others of us experienced the tragedy of our spouse’s sudden, unexpected death.

Just as nothing you could have said would have persuaded Jesus to evade the cross, we had no choice but to accept what we could not change.

The heaviness of that cross drained us, even as we persevered in hope.

Holy Mary, pray for us, that with each passing day this temporary separation will lead to everlasting joy.

Jesus, You endured all the trials we face, up to and including that final, wooden cross. You are with us every moment, in the pain and up to those final moments of our husband’s earthly life.
Then and now, You want us to rest our weary heads in Your lap so that you can console us … but we are too busy coping to come to You. As we look upon the second station and see You accepting Your cross, let us also see that You were holding us up through the intensity of our pain and loss.
Third Station: Jesus Falls for the First Time

Mary …

You saw your strong, manly son fall under the terrific weight of those beams. As you watched helplessly, waves of weakness filled your own body.

Did those feelings remind you of the grief you felt when Joseph died?

Watch over us, as our own physical strength dwindles slowly. Stay with us after the funeral, when we can hardly rise from our beds.

We, too, have felt those times of weakness that threatened to overtake us. Sometimes they linger still. Watch over us and lend us your strength and help us to move forward in hope.

Jesus, when widows collapse under the strain of early widowhood, You never chide us for failing to take up daily life tasks with our usual efficiency. Instead You remain at our side each day, and hover over our solitary beds, sending invisible graces. May we never doubt Your love for us as You bring new strength to our new state of life.
Fourth Station: Jesus Meets His Mother

Mary …

As I meditate upon this station of the Cross, I am struck by what an unforgettable encounter this must have been between you and your Son. It reminds us that deeper even than shared joy is shared agony!

Pray for us now. Some of us looked into the eyes of our husbands as they left this world. Some had no chance to say goodbye – he died far away or instantaneously, without warning.

Pray for us, your abandoned daughters.

Jesus, You knew Your mother’s heart inside out. Though it comforted You to receive her last touch and glance, it also must have grieved You to be the cause of her pain.
Thank You for the family and friends, priests, and parishioners who stayed with us as we made our way of the cross with our husbands. Even if no one walked with us, You, Jesus, Your mother, our angels and the widow saints were there.

Let us never be so frantic in our widowhood that we push away the love of those who reach out to us.
The Fifth Station: Simon Helps Jesus Carry the Cross

Mary …

You wished you could carry that cross for Your Son. You must have sighed in relief to see Simon bearing the weight.

As widows, even after many years, we can feel lonely, overwhelmed, and hopeless, desperately wishing for help.

Holy Mary, pray for your daughters in our hour of need.

Jesus, You are the God-man, yet You let another help when You were unable to keep going. Why, then, should we be too proud to beg? So often a cry brings assistance that does not come to those who hide their weakness.

In the Scriptures, the Holy Spirit promises rewards to those who aid widows. Show us who can help us in our neediness … and, when there really is no one, let us always fall back on You, the Second Bridegroom of widows. Strengthen our backs even as the cross still weighs us down.
Sixth Station: Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus

Mary …

Most likely you knew this valiant disciple, and saw the imprint on your Son’s face on that cloth long after His ascension.

Did you wipe the face of St. Joseph, just as we wiped the brow of our beloved husbands in their final moments? Did the image of your husband’s face remain with you long after? When words can do little, gestures can do much.

All of us treasure the image of our husbands, if not on a cloth, then in photographs. Holy Mary, pray for us as we remember.

Jesus, we hope our husbands asked forgiveness for their sins before their deaths, even if we did not witness this. We believe that they are either in purgatory of heaven. The fully resurrected body will not be theirs – or ours – until the Last Judgment. Yet, as we struggle along without our husbands, we like to imagine their faces looking down on us with compassion and, often, humor.
Seventh Station: Jesus Falls the Second Time

Mary …refuge of sinners …

More than any other witness , you understood how the cross of Jesus was part of the Father’s plan of salvation.

As your Son fell again, did you think of us sinners, through the centuries, coming to repentance? In your great distress, did your heart rejoice to see us repenting as we prayed these very stations?

During our long widowhood we have ample time to remember how often we fell from grace, when our own faults and sins hurt our spouses.

Mother Mary, pray for us your daughters, as we look to God for mercy.

Jesus, give us courage to confess the major sins of our married lives in the sacrament of reconciliation. You want us to have peace. Help us to believe that, in eternity, our husbands have repented of their sins against us. They do not judge us harshly now, for the are participating in the compassionate love of Your Sacred Heart for themselves and for us.
Eighth Station: The Women Console Jesus

Mary …

Were the women who braved the jeering crowd to console Jesus on the way of the cross, the same women who surrounded you when Joseph died? Surely they would not have left the mother of Love alone at her hour of need!

When we first became widows, more seasoned widows came forward to comfort and inspire us with their survival skills and their trust in you and in Jesus.

Holy Mary, pray for us with the compassion of your mother’s heart.

Jesus, deep is the consolation you wish to pour into our frazzled and forlorn widowed hearts. You would have us know that we are never, never, never, alone. But we need much grace to stretch ourselves beyond our senses to know You now in an even more intimate spiritual way than before. Only You can settle us down in the peace that comes with Your presence.
Ninth Station: Jesus Falls Again

Mary …

Despite your unique and exalted privileges as Mother of God, you must have felt your status in the world fall when you were no longer “Joseph’s wife” but only a poor widow.

In our times, most of us grieve our new state each time we fill out a form and are forced to check the “widow” box instead of the “married” box. Sometimes our social life falls because we are not part of a couple. Often, our income falls as well.

Mother Mary, pray for us your daughters as we feel our place in the world diminish.

Jesus, throughout Scripture, Your people were exhorted to honor needy widows. Purify the minds of all widows from negative images of widowhood. Show us if You want to provide us with second husbands. In Your new covenant, we are offered a new consecrated state, living to serve Your church. If our new vocation is to have You as our Second Bridegroom, show us how.
Tenth Station: Jesus is Stripped

Mary …

Did you keep any of your Son’s things after His death? Perhaps, you even kept some of Joseph’s belongings. We cannot know for certain. What we do know is that Jesus was parted from his clothes by force, an act of violence.

After the death of our husbands, it was a painful process to go through their possessions. As we stripped away those clothes, we felt the memories connected to those clothes slip away as well.

In another sense we feel stripped of everything our husband’s presence meant to us, especially on anniversaries, birthdays, family holidays and religious holy days. Holy Mary, pray for your daughters as we struggle to place all our losses into the hands of God.

Jesus: You wept at the death of Lazarus – and though it is not recorded, no doubt You cried when Joseph died, too. Even so, You also told us not to grieve as unbelievers do. Grief takes many forms; some of these forms are surprising, such as mourning over and article of our husband’s clothing. We beg You to turn each experience of loss into gratitude for the good times.

We hope for that day when our resurrected bodies will be clothed in unimaginable splendor, and we will be reunited with our loved ones. In the meantime, give us grace to be glad to be stripped of what we no longer need, and to help those who have less especially the starving and homeless.
Eleventh Station: Jesus is Nailed to the Cross

Mary …

You had to watch your Son endure one of the worst deaths ever devised. You saw the nails, blood, wounds, and his horrible, agonizing pain. At the crucifixion, you reflected the pain and strain your Son was experiencing. You became a mirror of His crucifixion.

Many widows recall having witnessed the awful, gut-wrenching miseries of a husband’s suffering Like you, Mary, we became mirrors of that suffering. Our faces, previously ore often expressive of light hearted joy, now manifest the heavy sadness of death.

Jesus, through our baptism each of us is incorporated into the pachal mystery. This means that, like You, we will all experience the passion, death and resurrection. Seen in this light, the loss of our husbands writes us to You in a profound way. Your mother shows us how to endure our cross and how to unite it to Yours. Help us to use our suffering and grief as a conduit of redemptive love that can lead others to You. Mary, our Mother, pray for us now and at the hour of death.
Twelfth Station: Jesus Dies on the Cross

Mary …

How often the ways of God must have surprised you, from the Annunciation on through all the mysteries of your life. Perhaps as Jesus was being crucified you waited expectantly for another miracle, hoping that somehow the resurrection would occur right then.

But that did not happen. Instead Jesus gave you another unexpected gift: the gift of spiritual motherhood. You were to become mother of His Church, symbolized in the person of John, the beloved apostle.

Jesus, even in the last moments, we prayed for our husband’s healing and health. Even when they died suddenly, without warning, we prayed over their bodies helping that they, like Lazarus, could be raised from the dead. We wanted them to remain with us here on earth.

As we pray for the souls of our husbands, we are reminded that there is still work that You have for us to do. As we mourn, let our tars never blind us to the need for love in the people around us.
Thirteen Station: Jesus is Taken from the Cross
Mary …

Great artists and sculptors have depicted the tender moment when you held the body of Jesus for the last time. Did you also remember holding the body of St. Joseph for the lat time? How often we wish that we could see our husbands again in the flesh, and embrace them in love.

Pray for us, O Holy Mary, that we might offer these longing back to God. Turn our grief into powerful seeds of prayer.

Jesus, You want us to grieve but not to beg for what is not Your will. Instead of physical contact with our husbands, bodies, You want to stretch us to make contact with them through prayer. Please wean us from wanting what is gone and help us to want what we can have in a spiritual way now, and in eternity. Some widows experience the souls of their spouses with them always, and others, rarely, if at all. Help us to trust in the signs of eternal life You choose for each of us as individuals. Many of us have found healing races through groups each of us as individuals. Many of us have found healing graces through groups each of us as individuals. Many of us have found healing graces through groups on bereavement and grief. If we could benefit from such ministries, help us to overcome our desire to hide our pain. Let us not reject what would bring hope.
Fourteen Station: Jesus Is Buried

Mary …

Some who write about you believe that Jesus first appeared to you, his mother privately. We do not know how that was, but we do know that you understand how we feel at the burial of those we love. Even with the numbness that often comes with a death, the farewell at the gravesite is always poignant.

Jesus, You want to increase our faith in life eternal. In the meantime, You teach us to believe in Your mystical body, experienced in its highest form on earth at Holy Mass and in the reception of Holy Communion. Help us to believe that our communion with You at the sacred rites is also a communion with the one to whom we were joined in the sacrament of marriage. You have made saints of some widows, known to us, or hidden from the public eye. What more can we pray for than that, like them, our hearts be free from doubt, bitterness, anxiety and despair and be filled, instead, with the joys You send us (even as we suffer) and with love, love, and LOVE.

Options for Catholic Widows

In the Act of the Apostles and the Epistles you will find references to good and bad widows. The bad ones were drunken and gossipy or both. The good ones devoted themselves to family and Church work. The earliest consecration in the Church was that of widows. This vocation is being revised in our times.

I thought it might help other widows to know of some options I have been researching for many years:

Ardent Catholic Widow – open to remarriage: Such a widow might add to the pious practices and service she performed some things she might not have done before such as daily Mass, liturgy of the hours, soup kitchen, hospice, etc. She might want to be part of 3 rd Orders or lay movements.

Religious Sister or Contemplative Nun: Many orders previously had age limits – this made entrance of most widows unlikely. Nowadays many such communities accept older women including widows for full membership. An community specifically designed to admit older women even if they can’t live in a convent but need to live with their families or alone in places where there is no communal convent is Handmaids of Nazareth – Sister Mary Jeanne Tate – (828) 384 1803.

Consecrated Widow within a Religious Community: There are some religious communities who have one or more consecrated widows with that title as a vocation different from Sisters or Lay Affiliates. Some of these are, The Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity ( S.O.L.T. -Servants of the Bride of Christ – For more about their spirituality go to www.brideofchristcommunity.org), The Pauline Holy Family Institute, The Franciscan Order. There may be others. Check the web or contact an order you are close to and ask if they might consider you. In this case the Consecrated Widow would be under the direction of someone in the Community living an individual rule either with other widows in a house or by herself, usually near a community house.

Servant Widows of the Good Shepherd: A widow felt called to start her own community of consecrated widows. Some will live in convents, some in their own homes. They will wear habits without veils. For more information contact Sr.Elizabeth Ann Seton at 610-439-8646.

Daughters of Divine Hope is a new group in Tyler Texas, that includes many types of women without age limit, including widows. They live in a convent and serve the Church. See http://www.daughtersofdivinehope.org

Widow Dedicated to the Lord with a Private Promise not to remarry and to live according to a Rule she devises with the help of her Pastor or Spiritual Director.

  • I have made and renewed since 1996 a private promise not to remarry ever.
  • I try to live simply, giving everything away to the poorest of the poor, to pro-life or other apostolates whatever money I have that I don’t need as a necessity. I dress in simple blue clothing: jumpers or dresses with blue or white sweaters or blouses, in honor of Mary.
  • I attend Daily Mass and make frequent Confession. I pray daily the rosary, the chaplet of Divine Mercy, the Liturgy of the Hours (Morning prayer, Evening Prayer and Night prayer, and meditate on spiritual readings. I spend an hour in silent prayer either in a Church or at home. I devote most of my time to apostolic endeavors such as writing, speaking and teaching. I am not under strict obedience but I do follow the advice of my spiritual director.

This Rule is not binding under pain of sin to allow for the flexibility I need as an older woman and as a widow for availability to my family, however, I will make my best effort to follow it.

Consecrated Widow Under the Bishop: There are consecrated widows now in France, Italy, Spain, Poland and pending Czechoslovakia but not yet in the United States. The Vatican is working on a rite for consecrated widows. This would not essentially be a group living together (though consecrated widows could choose to live in a group) but rather individuals who want to live much as did the consecrated widows described in the New Testament.. Archbishop Burke of St. Louis, who is overseeing this emerging possibility in the United States, suggests that widows who feel called to a consecrated life as individuals should write a letter expressing your reasons to the Congregation in Rome working on a possible rite: His Excellency Francis Cardinal Arinze, Congregation of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments 00120 Vatican City State, Europe.

Many widows find much wisdom, comfort and inspiration from reading about the widow saints. You might find this by reading Walk with Me, Jesus: A Widow’s Journey from Simon Peter Press (1-800-558-5452). In the meantime, there is a lot about widows in my book: Weeping with Jesus.

Family of Jacopa in Ohio: A new community that includes Sisters who can be widows, and dedicated widows, is Family of Jacopa in Ohio right near the Franciscan University of Steubenville. For information write to Kathleen Marshall via email

Many widows find much wisdom, comfort and inspiration from reading about the widow saints. You might find this by reading Walk with Me, Jesus: A Widow’s Journey coming soon from Simon Peter Press (1-800-558-5452). In the meantime, there is a lot about widows in my free book: Weeping with Jesus.

You can also e-mail me at chervinronda@gmail.com if you have questions about the callings listed in this flyer.

CHRONOLOGICAL BIBLIOGRAPHY OF BOOKS BY RONDA CHERVIN

  1. Church of Love (Liguori, Missouri: Liguori Publications) 1972  (Part of this became a booklet published by St. Paul Books and Media called Signs of Love: How Jesus Loves us through the Sacraments in 1989)
  2. The Art of Choosing: Guidelines for Making Life Decisions (Liguori, Missouri: Liguori Publications) 1974
  3. Prayer and Your Everyday Life Series including 3 booklets: Prayer and Your Everyday Life, The Spirit and your Everyday Life and Love and your Everyday Life (Liguori: Missouri: Liguori Publications) 1975
  4. Why I am a Charismatic: A Catholic Explains (Liguori, Missouri:  Liguori Publications) 1978
  5. The Way, the Truth and the Life: Meeting Christ in Prayer (Pecos, New Mexico: Dove Publications) 1978

  6. The Woman’s Tale: a Journal of Inner Exploration co-author Mary Neill (New York: Seabury) 1981

  7. Bringing the Mother with You: Sources of Healing in Marian Meditation co-author Mary Neill (New York: Seabury Press) 1982

  8. How Shall We Find the Father: Meditations for Mixed Voices co-authors Mary Neill and Don Briel (New York: The Seabury Press) 1983

  9. Half-Way to Eternity: Prayer-Poems, (Sedona, Arizona: Chiaro-Oscuro Press) 1983

  10. Victory Over Death: Foretastes of Eternity in Prayer (Petersham, Massachusetts: St. Bede’s Publications) 1985

  11. The Holy Dybbuk: Letters of Charles Rich, Contemplative (Petersham, Massachusetts: St. Bede’s Publications, 1988

  12. Great Saints, Great Friends co-author Mary Neill, OP (Staten Island, N.Y.: Alba House) 1989

  13. Hungry for Heaven: The Story of Charles Rich, Contemplative (Petersham, Massachusetts, St. Bede’s Publications) 1993

  14. Feminine, Free and Faithful (San Francisco: Ignatius Press) 1987 (Reprinted by Franciscan University Press, Steubenville, Ohio) 1995 (Published in Spanish under the title Femeninas, Libres y Fieles by Editorial Diana in 1991)

  15. The Ingrafting: The Conversion Stories of Ten Hebrew-Catholics (Petersham, Massachusetts: St. Bede’s Publications) 1987

  16. Living in Love: Christian Ethics for Everyday Life (Boston: St. Paul’s Books and Media) 1988. (This book is reprinted as part of a 4 volume compendium entitled The Way of Love published in 2013)

  17. Love of Wisdom: An Introduction to Christian Philosophy co-author Msgr. Eugene Kevane (San Francisco: Ignatius Press) 1988

  18. Woman to Woman co-author Terri Vorndran Nichols (San Francisco: Ignatius Press) 1998

  19. Prayers of the Women Mystics (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant) 1992 (Published in Italian under the title Le Preghiere delle Grandi Mistiche in 1992)

  20. Tell My Why: Answering Tough Questions about the Faith co-author Msgr. Joseph Pollard (Huntington, Indiana: Our Sunday Visitor) 1994

  21. En Route to Eternity: The Story of My Life (New York: Miriam Press) 1994

  22. A Mother’s Treasury of Prayers (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant) 1994

  23. Treasury of Women Saints (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant Publications) 1991(Reprinted and updated by Franciscan Media, 2015) (Translated into Italian under the title Donne Sante published by Libreria Editrice Vaticana in 1995)

  24. Quotable Saints (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant) 1992 (Reprinted by CMJ Marian Publishers)

  25. The Book of Catholic Customs and Traditions, co-author Carla Conley (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant Publications) 1994

  26. The Kiss from the Cross: A Saint for Every Kind of Suffering (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant Publications)  1994 (published in Korean – the date is in Korean but I know it was in the 2000’s) (Reprinted in 2015 under the title Avoiding Bitterness in Suffering: How Our Heroes in Faith Found Peace amid Sorrow by Sophia Institute Press (Manchester, New Hampshire) 2015.

  27. Spiritual Friendship: Darkness and Light (Boston: St. Paul’s Books and Media) 1992

  28. Freed to Love: Healing for Catholic Women (Sedona, Arizona: ChiaroOscuro Press) 1994

  29. Bread from Heaven: Stories of Jews who found the Messiah (New Hope, Kentucky, Remnant of Israel) 1994

  30. Letters for Eternity: Collected from the Correspondence of Charles Rich with Ronda Chervin (Petersham, Massachusetts: St. Bede’s Publications) 1994

  31. Voyage to Insight co-author Lois August Janis (Sedona, Arizona: Chiaro-Oscuro Press) 1994 (reprinted by Enroute Books, 2014)

  32. Becoming a Handmaid of the Lord: From the Journals of Ronda De Sola Chervin 1977-1996 (Oak Lawn, Illinois: CMJ Associates) 1997

  33. Holding Hands with God: Catholic Women Share Their Stories of Courage and Hope (Huntington, Indiana: Our Sunday Visitor) 1997

  34. A Widow’s Walk: Encouragement, Comfort, and Wisdom from the Widow-Saints (Huntington, Indiana: Our Sunday Visitor) 1998 (This was reprinted in a revised edition with Heidi Hess Saxton related more to grieving by Simon Peter Press under the title Walk with me, Jesus: A Widow’s Journey, in 2008)

  35. Healing Meditations from the Gospel of St. John, co-author Dr. Ross Porter (Oak Lawn, Illinois: CMJ – Marian Publishers) 2000

  36. The Fabric of Our Lives (Oak Lawn: CMJ Marian Publishers)  2000

  37. Seeking Christ in the Crosses and Joys of Aging (Oak Lawn, Illinois: CMJ – Marian Publishers) 2000

  38. Help in Time of Need: Encouragement, Practical Advice and Prayers (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Servant) 2002

  39. Taming the Lion Within: 5 Steps from Anger to Peace (Oldsmar, Florida: Simon Peter Press) 2003

  40. Legacy: How to Share the Memories You Treasure with Family and Friends (Oak Lawn, Illinois: CMJ Marian Publications) 2005

  41. What the Saints Said About Heaven co-authors Richard and Ruth Ballard (Charlotte, North Carolina: Tan/St. Benedict)  2011

  42. Last Call: Twelve Men Who Dared Answer, Stories of Late Vocations to the Priesthood (Corpus Christi, Texas: Goodbooksmedia) 2012

  43. Toward a 21st Century Catholic World-View (Corpus Christi, Texas: Goodbooksmedia) 2014

  44. Catholic Realism: A framework for the Refutation of Atheism and the Evangelization of Atheists, co-author Sebastian Mahfood (St. Louis, Missouri: En Route Books and Media) 2015

  45. Spirituality for All Times: Readings from the Catholic Classics co-author Kathleen Brouillette (St. Louis, Missouri: En Route Books and Media) 2015

  46. Weeping with Jesus: The Journey from Grief to Hope (St. Louis, Missouri: En Route Books and Media) 2016

  47. Healing from Rejection with the Help of the Lord: A Survivor’s Guide (En Route Books) (St. Louis, Missouri: En Route Books and Media) 2016

  48. The Way of Love: The Battle for Inner Transformation (including What is Love: Obstacles to Love, Making Loving Moral Decisions, and 100 Day Spiritual Marathon) (St . Louis, Missouri: En Route Books and Media) 2017

  49. Why I am Still a Catholic – a series of booklets, edited by Ronda Chervin including one by her (Corpus Christi, Texas: goodbooksmedia.com) 2017

  50. Escaping Anxiety on the Road to Spiritual Joy – co-author Al Hughes (St. Louis, Missouri, En Route Books and Media) 2018

  51. Simple Holiness – co-author Al Hughes (St. Louis, Missouri, En Route Books and Media) 2018

  52. 9 Toes in Eternity – (Corpus Christi, Texas: goodbooksmedia.com) 2018

  53. Road Map for 80 Year-Olds, co-author Al Hughes (St. Louis, Missouri, En Route Books and Media) 2019

  54. Short-Takes – Transcripts of WCAT Radio Shows edited by Ronda Chervin (St. Louis, Missouri, En Route Books and Media) 2019

  55. Give me Your Heart: Preparing for Eternal Life – from writings of Charles Rich, edited by Ronda Chervin (St. Louis, Missouri, En Route Books and Media) 2019

  56. En Route to Eternity: Further Along the Road sequel to En Route to Eternity Miriam Press – forthcoming 2020.

Self-Published:

  1. Becoming a Woman of God: Your 15 -Week Guided Journal, co-author Eileen Spotts, 1995
  2. Ties that Bind: The Story of a Marriage (a novel) 1995
  3. The Summer Knight’s Tale co-author Gene Grandy (a novel) 2001
  4. The Battle for the 20th Century Mind (a textbook) 2001
  5. The Last Fling (a novel) 2002
  6. Called by Name: Following a Personal Spirituality, 2006
  7. God Alone! Solo Dios BastaThoughts Received by Ronda Chervin, 2008
  8. 6 Toes in Eternity – Journals of Ronda Chervin, 2018