Our Not-Quite-Holy Family

A Practical Guide for Catholic Parents
Author: Mark Hart
Author: Melanie Hart

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Format: Paperback

Publication date: February 5, 2021

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Winner of a first-place award in the general interest category from the Association of Catholic Publishers and a second-place award in the family life category from the Catholic Media Association.

Many Catholics might recognize Mark Hart as the dynamic youth minister who has all the right answers about being and staying Catholic. Flash forward fifteen years: Mark and his wife Melanie have four children and they realize that despite all the advice they’ve doled out over the years, there’s no single formula for having a happy, holy family. In Our Not-Quite-Holy Family, the Harts offer candid, sincere, and down-to-earth wisdom from their time in the trenches of parenting.

Do you feel as if you’ve taken all the right steps to create God-loving individuals but still find your children are tuning you out? Are you trying to figure out how to have a family that is holy but still “normal” and human? If so, you’ll find comfort, encouragement, honesty, wit, and—most importantly—practical wisdom in Our Not-Quite-Holy Family.

Chock-full of amusing anecdotes about their journey raising four children, the Hart’s book reminds Catholics that being a good parent means taking time to get to know—and actually enjoy—your children. You’ll find thoughtful insights on a range of parenting topics, including:

  • becoming a proactive, emotionally-present parent,
  • healing personal wounds before they emerge in your parenting,
  • parenting with your spouse as a team while maintaining intimacy in marriage,
  • praying as a family without coercing your children,
  • managing screen time, social media, and demanding schedules, and
  • picking your battles and being a good listener.

Each chapter presents typical shortfalls and obstacles faced by Catholic parents, suggestions and ideas to think and pray about as a couple, and resources or activities to try as a couple or family.

A book for Catholics at every stage of the parenting journey—the Harts have a child in college, high school, middle school, and elementary school—Our Not-Quite-Holy Family leaves parents with a little less tension in their shoulders and a slap on the back for doing a good job—no matter what everyone else says “good Catholic parenting” should look like.

Product Details

Pages: 160

Trim size: 5.5 x 8.5 inches

ISBN: 9781594719172

Imprint: Ave Maria Press

  • “A breath of fresh air.”

    “Mark and Melanie Hart are the breath of fresh air that modern Catholic parents need.”

    Jennifer Fulwiler
    Author of Something Other Than God

  • “A treasure map for harried parents.”

    “Mark and Melanie Hart have
    written a treasure map for harried parents searching for honest, faithful, fun parenting. This book is a godsend. It is honest, boots-on-the-ground living in a Spirit-filled family.”

    Tom Wilson
    Actor, writer, and comedian

  • “A winner for Catholic parents.”

    Our Not-Quite-Holy Family is terrific! Full of practical counsel and humor, this book is a winner for Catholic parents.”

    Fr. Mike Schmitz
    Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries
    Diocese of Duluth

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