Celebrate Halloween in a Catholic way...
As Catholics, should we celebrate the “devil’s holiday,” so to speak, by dressing up as witches, devils, demons, or even “innocent” characters from movies or books? If this day is evil, why do we celebrate Halloween? This is a controversial subject at best this time of year. Some say this day has pagan origins, but we are going to focus on the Catholic side of things.
The real name of Halloween is “All Hallows Eve,” and it is the day before All Saints Day in the Catholic Church. Traditionally, an eve of a feast is a day for penance, not dressing up like werewolves! All Hallows Eve is also the pre-cursor to the “Day of the Dead,” All Souls Day – now November 2 in the Catholic Church.
Catholic News Agency reported:
Halloween “is not as innocent as dressing up as a witch and creating jack-o-lanterns with scary looking faces.” Father Joan Maria Canals of the Committee on the Liturgy of the Spanish Bishops’ Conference told La Razon that the problem with Halloween is its connection to “occultism and anti-Christianity.”
Parents should “be conscious and channel the meaning of the day towards that which is good and beautiful instead of towards terror, fear and death itself,” he added. (Catholic News Agency)
So, as parents we can allow our children to celebrate, but we can define the celebration of “All Hallows Eve” by encouraging our little ones dress up as saints.
Now, if you are from a Mexican descent as I am, you may also want to celebrate the “Day of the Dead.” This is done by honoring the loved ones that have passed from our families. Here are some articles on this celebration if you wish to research further:
Day of the Dead (Catholic.org)
Why do Catholics celebrate Day of the Dead? (Aleteia.org)
Celebrating All Hallows Eve in a Catholic way First, have your child choose a saint they like the most. Perhaps it is St. John of the Cross or St. Rose! Then they should dress up like their favorite saint. St. John would need a cross or crucifix – perhaps make a special one for him to carry. St. Rose should dress in white and wear a crown of roses and perhaps add in a black veil, as she was a Dominican tertiary.
Next, think of a party theme idea! I have been to various All Saints parties – there are many ways to do this. One way is to have a March of the Saints and maybe a guess the saint game! First of all, have all the “saints” march together, down your street if you are hosting a party, or if at a church, go around the block and come back to the church hall.
Then, if you have priests in attendance, they can guess the saint. If you have nuns in your chapel, maybe they could be the ones guessing. Anyway, this will take some time; the other partygoers can have snacks while the guessing game is going on. If you have a church where you have classrooms, you can decorate the doors with particular saints if so desired and then hand out candy at each door – or the candy can be handed out in the hall or at your home. Other games can be played as well, such as a ring toss. Use your imagination! If you need ideas, read the book Saints and Seasons of the Liturgical Year from Catholic Heritage.
There is also another tradition called “Soul cakes” where you pray for a person that has passed soul. The name of the person is put on candy or food (like if the host makes cupcakes or donuts – you can attach a name of a departed person on a card or sticker) – then the person eating the food must also remember to pray for that soul that has passed! I really like this tradition as it ties the Catholic All Souls Day to All Hallows Eve, and you are tying a much-needed prayer for the Holy Souls that have passed from this life.
End your party with singing some songs about saints and holy souls!
Now, that you know how to properly host a All Hallows Eve party - yes, Catholics can definitely celebrate Halloween in this wonderful way!
Will you host your own party this year or find a way to celebrate as a saint? What saint will you be? Can you guess the saints below?
Should Catholics Celebrate Halloween?
Technically the proper name for Halloween is "All Hallows' Eve" and yes it is OK to celebrate it in the Catholic tradition of things. We should be celebrating saints that have died - since the next day is All Saints Day! Secondly, in the Traditional Latin Mass calendar, Christ the King Feast day happens to land on Halloween this year - so maybe trade in the idea of ghosts and goblins to being Knight or a King! Christ is King of our Hearts and this is a great feast day to celebrate!
One of these days I may just make a class just for information about the traditions and feast days of the Catholic Church.
Our Bereavement course sale ends on November 1st - so get in for good deal for only $77.00 - go here to learn more!
Anyway, so what's on the menu for end of October or November at Catholic Doula?
Well, first of all we are working on the Magnificat Doula Certification for fertility doula class - and I made a page where you can signup for the waitlist. So, if you want to do that please go here. https://mailchi.mp/b8c33a0bc763/magnificatdoula1
Then we are still hosting our herbal course - we have decided to do a live over 2 nights and then the rest of the class is your modules and you make one herb. I may also send you some mini videos extras as bonus! Plus, I put it on sale for less only $77. So, go here to signup!!
November we are going to do business doula class and rebozo classes - so look for that information here for business and here for rebozo classes!! We hope you will join us on one of those dates!!
I also may do herbs again in December if we have enough interest.
I am considering offering GIFT CARDS for Christmas time - a Gift card could be purchased for $50-$200 to go towards a small class or big class.
October is usually a busy month for everyone -but let's hope you can make time for a Doing Business the Doula webinar - we set up 2 dates for our live class - they both will make if we have someone signup - choose October 13 or October 22nd. Be prepared for 2 hour with break class! Learn more about the doula business class here!
November we are offering our fall herbal class (2-3 class meetings) - enroll early for a special bonus herb to be sent to you!! This herbal class will also include a replay of our mini-belly binding class from our postpartum class. Read more here about the herbal class and how to enroll!
Bereavement class is currently still self-pace and we are considering an update of the course for us to add it to Magnificat Childbirth Educator Thinkific platform. So, we are discounting the current class from October 2nd-October 15th in honor of bereavement doula month - become a certified sorrowful doula! Learn more at this link about the course!
December we will probably be taking some time off - usually it is our slowest month - however, self-pace classes will always be available. And we may still run a surprise sale ! We look forward to serving you again in the new year. We may even have something around Epiphany (Jan. 6th) live class - so look for details on that later on in this year!
Want to be on our mailing list and are not getting Sacred sisters doula news or Marian Mother's news? Email us here and say "add to newsletter" - get specific if you want. Marian mother's news has items more aimed at mothers and parent classes while Sacred Sisters has info for doulas!
Also, since today is St. Therese's feast day - it is time to start a novena to her - so here's the novena link. Ask her to send you a rose - I am for sure!!
God Bless! Oh, in our next blog we will announce more about Rebozo workshop most likely for mid or late October!
Rebozo class is coming!! Yeah, we are going to offer 2 levels on September 6th - we will do Level A and Level C - fun!! For now it is $65 a person - Want to get a discount? Please signup with a friend for $50 a person - tell us friend's name or pay for your friend's signup! Email us for enrollment info!
Update on Postpartum course got delayed so we are starting next Wed. September 1st. If interested in live birth class we will start that up in October (date to be announced).
More on Rebozo class - The Level A is our simple and easy fun class to learn the basics - open to anyone who wants to learn rebozo (can be parents, doulas, midwives, etc.)
Level C - prefer some experience but anyone can come - Level C will cover our postpartum bone closing ceremony, postpartum pushing, mini-rebozo massage for baby, and some licensure opportunity to teach locally (first come first serve for areas ). You need to do all levels in order to get the licensure agreement going.
Want to register for rebozo class or get into postpartum? Email us now!!
We are busy this summer - we got a last minute fast-track doula class going this summer and it has been great - the students are wonderful! So, we are now going to offer a postpartum live class starting August 19th and going thru September (near end).
After that I may offer a live birth doula class again as I already have interest!! Phew!! So, if you are interested in either course use the contact form and drop us a line - we will most likely give you a call back if you leave a phone number!
The postpartum doula class will run from August 19th-September! This class we will be going over our full 7 module class in 6 class sessions with possible make up session as needed! The class will be held on Thursday evenings. Pray for our successful first adventure of postpartum live class!
So, we hope to do a birth live starting in October-November. After that I plan to take a holiday season break. However, I am able to offer shorter rebozo workshop over the holidays or breastfeeding class if anyone is interested in those during that time frame!
I think the next class after that will probably be late January or February depending on interest as far as live classes go. I think we are on a roll! I enjoy teaching, so I hope if there's interest for live classes next year to let us know.
Want to know for sure on dates, etc.? Please signup for our newsletter "Sacred Sisters News!" You should be able to signup on front page - if the drop down newsletter is not showing - then email us and we will add you to our Reachmail Newsletter! Thanks so much. God Bless!
World Doula Week Special deals coming...and changes....
World doula week specials are coming up and if you want more information - please signup below for our special world doula week series Go here to signup: https://go.reachmail.net/SubscriptionForm/bf9fbacd-8757-4c02-8333-ace2003d6c4c
So, some changes are coming to Catholic Doula Program; we are getting a new "head" of correspondence and will be our student advisory board member. Announcement on who that will be soon. Julie is taking a break for a few months and will be basically handing over the reins to others on our board. In fact, we are forming a more official board for Catholic Doula Program. We may even be rebranding a bit - as that is a project that is still being considered; we are just announcing that we are planning a) an official board of Catholic Doula Program b) an official terms and conditions policy for the site and classes c) an official grievance and ethics policies d) more clarification on the pro-life doula pledge. .(like we have decided to allow supporting surrogacy pregnancies.)
We are moving off Facebook platform and are using the Catholic Social media site and MeWe. Right now, we do not have a Catholic Doula group on MeWe yet. We will let you know when that happens. Facebook is becoming more anti-Catholic. So, that is one reason we have decided to discontinue a page up there. We may still consider a smaller group.
We are actually looking for board members. Board members will be offered a referral page , so they can earn some $ back. So, if you want more information Contact us here. Thank you!
Welcome to the blog: Today we wanted to share with you a prayer against ANY temptation. This prayer information seems to be public domain. St. Anthony is a very great saint to pray to. We usually pray to him to find things. This prayer is also called sometimes "St. Anthony's Brief." I hope you like this information. Source is below.
To pray any time of day, and defeat temptation:
Popular tradition holds that St. Anthony taught a prayer to a poor woman who sought help against the temptations of the devil. The Franciscan Pope Sixtus V had the prayer — also called “the motto of St. Anthony” — engraved into the base of the obelisk erected in St. Peter’s Square in Rome.
In the original Latin, the prayer says
Ecce Crucem Domini!
Fugite partes adversae!
Vicit Leo de tribu Juda,
Radix David! Alleluia!
And translated, it reads:
Behold, the Cross of the Lord!
Begone, all evil powers!
The Lion of the tribe of Judah,
The Root of David, has conquered!
This short prayer has the flavor of a small exorcism. We can use it too — both in Latin and in English — to be able to overcome all the temptations we face.
Translated from the Italian. Source: https://www.catholicshare.com/this-is-the-powerful-exorcism-prayer-st-anthony-of-padua-taught-a-woman/#ixzz6o5UcSn00
Do you have the winter blues?
We get out not enough in the winter time. Many of us esp. moms are stay at home and keep inside all day long. Or if you get out it is only to pickup your kids from school, etc.
So, you might become blue - or slightly depressed.
Here are some tips to help you start feeling better:
1. Get some sun! Even if it is opening that window on a cold blustery day!
2. Take Vitamin D supplement - (ok I am not your doctor -just a suggestion). Vitamin D is kind of the day time melatonin - your body needs Vitamin D to keep your moods better!
3.Eat healing foods. If you are wanting to get eating and cooking - we now have a "sister" site at The Kitchen Doula Academy - fun nutritional classes and cooking section coming soon! Learn about the 7 foundations of nutrition and foods! The classes can be taken by mamas and doulas too. Check out that website here.
4. Remember to take time for self-care - turn off the Internet/Facebook and just sit and relax. Breathe in and out. Maybe even just leave Facebook. Just a time waster anyway!
5. Smile and laugh -that will help your blues. Watch a funny movie. My favorite funny movies are the Mr. Bean movies. They are just hilarious! So, find a fun movie and cuddle up with a loved one and have fun.
6. Take an online class! You can find all kinds of classes online to take - and not just ours. Perhaps you are not interested in being a doula, but want to learn about sewing. I am sure you can find that course somewhere!
7. Get good rest - now this is the time where you can take Melatonin for night time (as long as you are able to - some mamas need to check with doctor if pregnant or nursing).
One more thing - we are opening up our childbirth classes online soon and will have a launch party soon! So, look for that and get a special deal! Launch party will be at SP3RN.com the Real Catholic Social Media site. For Catholics only!
3 easy ways to keep cool...
Hi, Catholic Doula Fans and Friends,
Well, it seems like the heat is getting to me, but then being a Texan 90 and up is hot and 100 is just way too hot!
So, what are 3 easy ways to keep cool?
1. Spray yourself with some cool water - get a spray bottle and add some water to it - if you like add a drop or two of lavender essential oils to help make you feel fresher!
2. Take a nice cold shower - yep, I said cold or make it lukewarm and then put on that cold at the end - it will feel great!
3. Spray your sheets lightly with some cool water (like above) - not too damp - but enough to feel good when you get into that bed at night!
OK, so, hope that keeps you cool - so what else is cool right now? Our special business class - meet "live" with us for 4 times and discuss the "Doing Business the Doula way" book that I authored with Lisa Van Der Wilt - do the exercises in the book (virtual studies included) and get your business certificate. So, anyway, this business class is only $75.00 - such a great deal - most cost a lot more and if you are wanting to register - get over to this link and register today!!
By the way the first 4 signups get the papercopy of the book for free!! After that I'll send out for free a pdf version! Thanks so much!
(Picture is unsplash photo by Jonathan Borba).
Pregnant during the pandemic - what's a catholic mom to do?
Pregnancy during the Pandemic – What is a Catholic Mom to do?
By Julie Larsen
I keep hearing stories in the news of moms not being able to give birth with their spouse present or a doula. If the hospital allows a mom to give birth with a spouse there – they have all kinds of protocols – may have to wear a mask, gloves, gown or whatever. Even stories of baby being taken away from mother after birth. What is a Catholic Mom to do?
First of all, do not panic. Talk to your doctor and hospital before the due date. Clarify what they allow or not allow. Please insist on at least your spouse being there if at all possible, adding in another support person as well – doula or sister or family member. Ask questions!
Second, be prepared for the hospital policies or consider other options for your birth. If you are pregnant right now and have time to consider home birth with a midwife and you are not super high-risk pregnancy – you really can consider this option. If you want to learn more about home birth options, I plan to put some links at the bottom of this article. If you are going ahead with hospital – ask what their policies are right now and if any of them may change before your baby is born. Ask to consider letting you have that “birth hour” with your baby – where you get to hold the baby skin to skin, breastfeed (if doing this), and no bath till after this hour is up. I do not think the hospital should stop this kind of thing – if you are not covid positive then there should not be an issue. Even if a mother or baby has covid – the baby will benefit from breastmilk. Insist on informed consent for any procedure done at the hospital. There is one thing they cannot do – force you to do anything you do not want. Find another hospital, do home birth, find a way that works for you. If we do not do this, then we are allowing the hospital to dictate the way birth happens. Remember you can always say “I do not consent” and they must listen!
Third, no matter what your birth plan or wishes are – God is in control. Leaving the birth in His Hands is so important in this time of pandemic. Repeating positive affirmations to yourself and your baby will help you get through this. See link at bottom to grab some free affirmations I am offering to moms.
Fourth – birth story share! Remember your story for you and your baby is a birth story worth sharing and remembering. No matter what policies are in place – get that story written down -share your story with others! Let other mamas know that you were empowered at your birth. That you can do this journey and so can other mamas!
Fifth: This gift of life that you are giving a newborn baby is awesome. We thank you for choosing life in time of pandemic. Many mamas are scared even more on how to get ends to meet. If a mother is not sure reading this article how she can continue on her pregnancy journey, reach out to Christian or Catholic pregnancy help centers and see how they can help. There is also the Project Gabriel Angel that helps pregnant mothers as well. http://www.gabrielproject.org/
Sixth: Pray during your labor. Pray at home, pray at the hospital. Bring a Rosary and pray. Put on some light music if need to focus. Get that birth room the way you want it. Keep your strength in God and Mother Mary. One of my recent clients said – and Mary is going to be with me. I thought she was referring to a family member. And then she said, “No, Mother Mary!” I finally got it. I was like “Wow, the confidence you have in Mary is so special.” I even lack this confidence. I felt like this client understood a special devotion to Mary that perhaps I lack. I am glad that this client taught me something about relying on Jesus and Mary during pregnancy and labor. I learn something each time I help a new client as a doula!
Final words, I am starting up a new podcast for mamas – pregnant, postpartum, breastfeeding, topics like this will be covered. Right now, I have a podcast site and name. The podcast name is Angelic Bellies – Life Bearing Mamas. View here: https://anchor.fm/juliana-larsen So, episodes will be coming soon – if there’s a way to subscribe please do so!
Another idea – hire a virtual long-distance doula! I offer this service for a small fee compared to many other doulas. A lot of mamas are hiring doulas to be there “virtually” during labor and such. However, we also offer preparation time – work for the birth time. So, this for me is usually two sessions – but I can do more. I also offer childbirth classes online as well – so this helps if mama wants more information then I suggest signing up for the classes as well. If you want more info contact me here: Ave Maria Doula & Mother’s Knot Breastfeeding https://www.facebook.com/mothersknot/ I also do not mind referring you to someone in your area if you are looking for an in person doula or doula that is closer to you for online services. There is also this doula finder that might be helpful: http://findacatholicdoula.weebly.com
So, Catholic moms here is your takeaway:
1.Be prepared for your birth – home, hospital, birth center.
2.Ask questions of your doctor or midwife.
3.Understand policies before arriving at the hospital.
4.Insist on at least husband/partner be at birth.
5.Let go and give it to God.
6.Pray! Give your pregnancy and labor to Mother Mary!
7.Grab some free affirmations here: https://doulacon.weebly.com/resources.html I’ll add them to this page on our Doula and Mama conference that we had this month.
8.Do not forget to subscribe here to Mother Marian newsletter: https://go.reachmail.net/SubscriptionForm/f03fafed-2d36-4294-a43f-ab0c012312a9/fullpage And I’ll send reminders about our podcast!!
9.Home birth resources – Free birth plan resource: https://homesweethomebirth.com/gift and this site: http://www.spiritualbirth.net/
10.So, what do you want to know more about for your upcoming pregnancy and birth?