Each month we will share book suggestions from Ave Maria Press staff. This month we have selections from our Sales Manager, Kay Luther, and the Executive Editor for Adolescent Catechesis, Michael Amodei. 

Staff Pick: This Flowing Toward Me

Kay Luther's Staff Pick

From Kay Luther, Sales Manager 

1. What did you like best about the book?

Sister Marilyn writes about her experiences in a way that makes you feel like you are on the journey with her and each refugee that she meets along the way. She explains in detail the surroundings that allow the reader to fully understand the difficult conditions of the people she writes about and allows you to feel the love, mercy, and compassion that she, her colleagues, and other volunteers demonstrate for everyone they encounter. One of the most meaningful chapters is when Sister Marilyn writes about how the refugees taught her a new way of loving. The beauty and grace of Sister Marilyn’s words touched my heart and I couldn’t put the book down until I read to the end. 

2. In your mind, what makes this book unique?

She knows how to share the stories of the refuges with compassion and just the right amount of humor (which she always directs toward herself). Sister Marilyn finds humor in her own response to foods that are unusual to her palate and to the bugs she discovered in the many countries she visited. The most unique part of this book is that the stories of the refugees are not just written by Sister Marilyn; twenty pages of the book are written by a refugee who tells his remarkable story of gratitude, courage, and hope in even the darkest of moments of his life.

3. Who would benefit most from reading this book and why?

Of course the obvious answer is that this is a great book for those who want to become involved with mission work or work with refugees either locally or abroad, but the stories in this book also have the ability to reach readers from many different walks of life and various situations. It can be used for those that are struggling with gratitude issues or those that want to gain some understanding of the difficulties faced by newly migrated refugees that are appearing in their communities. This book allows all of us to remember that God is closest to those in need.

Staff Pick: Holy Goals for Body and Soul 

Mike Amodei Staff Pick

From Michael Amodei, Executive Editor of Adolescent Catechesis 

1. What did you like best about the book?

I love all sports. I love hockey and the Chicago Blackhawks. As a person who ran his first half-marathon over the age of 50, I am inspired by Bishop Paprocki's ability to train and complete multiple full marathons. All these elements certainly make Holy Goals for Body and Soul one of my favorite Ave Maria Press books to read and recommend.

2. In your mind, what makes this book unique?

Within the fabric of the text is a glimpse into the remarkable story of a priestly vocation arising from a Catholic family from the south side of Chicago. The children worked in their dad's pharmacy while sneaking away to play hockey in the basement or to pretend to be priests at Mass. The descriptions of how the Paprocki's worked, prayed, and played together are an inspiration to me as a parent always hoping to instill a deeper Catholic faith into my own children.

3. Who would benefit most from reading this book and why?

Certainly anyone active in athletics, especially teenagers and young adults, would love this book. Many Catholics do pray and contemplate God while working out or competing in sports. Others have yet to make the connection between the exercise, camaraderie among teammates, reaching for goals, and other elements of sports with our God who gifts us with those things. Bishop Paprocki helps readers make those and other connections.

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This Flowing Toward Me
Holy Goals for Body and Soul