We have been blessed with our 40th follower. We'd like to celebrate the moment with our second ever give-away of a book that has inspired us here at The Feminine Gift. The book this time has been a source of wisdom and encouragement for us, written by a woman we look up to with a great deal of regard and respect. The book is: The Privilege of being a woman, by Alice Von Hildebrand.
We'd love to give the book to you because we love you – we'd love to give the book to all of you, because we believe every Catholic woman should have it on her bookshelves – but we can't. In fact, we're even going to make you work for it! We are going to choose a name at random from among the responses we get to this question, either at The Feminine Gift, or our Facebook page. *Note: with the current set up of thefemininegift.org, it is sometimes difficult to access the comment box. The page may have to be refreshed a few times in order to open it. We are working to correct the problem!* The selection will be made on August 23.
The question is: do you have a patron saint? If so, why that one? We look forward to reading your answers.
It didn't seem fair to ask you to do all the work, so here is our story:
The Feminine Gift is under the patronage of Edith Stein – in religion known as St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. We chose her... or rather she chose us... through her book 'Woman'. Our writing is sprinkled with quotations from this remarkable woman, many of them from that book. As it is written in the preface, “Woman will always set the quality of a given time, acting as 'the demon of the abyss' or as a saviour for the life about her. Today's woman faces a more dramatic and severe challenge than ever. The family needs her but society needs her also. As a human being, she must fulfill a serious political role along with her maternal one. In these essays, Stein teaches the woman how to be a balanced and fulfilled person in today's world. Her words describe the essence of all women.” Pretty relevant and applicable to today's woman, though it was written ninety years ago.
Edith Stein had a powerful intellect, was a gifted writer, and really had a heart for matters pertaining to women, particularly their education so they would flourish as women. She was a philosopher, a university professor, a respected lecturer. She was Jewish. Though an observant Jew in childhood, she lost faith in God in her teens. She continued to seek for truth, however, and years later while visiting friends, she came across a copy of the autobiography of St. Teresa of Avila, and with that, realized her home was within the Catholic Church, and eventually entered the order of Discalced Carmelites. Realizing her presence as Catholic Jew in the convent (in Cologne, Germany) Edith asked to be moved out of Germany and in 1938 was secretly taken to Holland. However, the Nazis began to persecute and execute Catholics of Jewish extraction in Holland, and Edith and her sister, Rose, were taken to Auschwitz, and gassed a week later on August 9, 1942. Twelve years earlier she had written, “Every time I feel my powerlessness and inability to influence people directly, I become more keenly aware of the necessity of my own holocaust.”
She is now one of the patron saints of Europe, and a Doctor of the Church, an honoured daughter of Israel.
|Henceforth my only vocation is to love|