Category History

Thank You, Sisters

Thank You, Sisters: Stories of Women Religious and How They Enrich Our LivesThank You, Sisters
By John Feister
Franciscan Media
Retail Price $14.99
Amazon Price: $12.48

Book Description: 

Since the April 2012 announcement of the Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, there has been considerable media attention focused on Catholic Sisters.The first report, and the consequent naming of bishop-oversight and guidance of LCWR for the next five years, has resulted in an outcry of support for U.S. religious sisters from much of the Church, and a concurrent outcry of support for the Holy See and criticism of sisters from other parts of the Church. There has not been much reliable analysis of this reaction yet: Is it liberal-conservative? Young or old? Neither is the point of this book.Thank You, Sisters highlights the positive impact that sisters have had on a cross-section of Catholics. It steps back from finger-pointing and position-taking and simply tells inspiring, true stories of Sisters and the people they have influenced. The book shows the effect religious women have had not only on the U.S. Catholic Church, but on the nation as a whole, in areas such as health care, education, social justice, and pastoral ministry.

The contributors to this book are prominent Catholics who write from a wide range of experience. They include:

  • James Martin, S.J.
  • Cokie Roberts
  • Mary Fishman— producer of Band of Sisters
  • Adriana Trigiani
  • Binka Le Breton, on Amazon martyr Sister Dorothy Stang
  • Maureen Orth
  • Liz Scott, on Sr. Helen Prejean
  • Teresa Gardner and Sr. Chris Kenney
  • Maurice Nutt, C.S.S.R. on Sr. Thea Bowman
  • Teresa Wilson on Sr. Joan Chittister
  • Dan Horan, O.F.M.


Written in simple to understand language, this book takes a look at women’s history from the perspective of Catholic Sisters and their contributions to society. Many of the Sisters in the book have been social activists, helping to feed the hungry and provide health care to the poor.  Some of the sisters were political activists, fighting for the rights of the those who could not fight themselves.  The work they have done has often been overlooked, but this book seeks to right that wrong and pay tribute to this group of women who are truly an inspiration.

~Reviewed by Fran O.

    The Civil Wars of Julia Ward Howe

    Product DetailsThe Civil Wars of Julia Ward Howe
    By Elaine Showalter
    Simon and Schuster
    Retail Price:  $28.00
    Amazon Price: $18.78

    Book Description:  The first full biography of Julia Ward Howe—the author of The Battle Hymn of the Republic and an early and powerful feminist pioneer—a groundbreaking figure in the abolitionist and suffrage movements.

    Julia Ward (1819–1910) was a heiress and aspiring poet when she married Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe, an internationally-acclaimed pioneer in the education of the blind. Together the Howes knew many of the key figures of their era, from Charles Dickens to John Brown. But he also wasted her inheritance, isolated and discouraged her, and opposed her literary ambitions. Julia persisted, and continued to publish poems and plays while raising six children.

    Authorship of the Battle Hymn of the Republic made her celebrated and revered. But Julia was also continuing to fight a civil war at home; she became a pacifist, suffragist, and world traveler. She came into her own as a tireless campaigner for women’s rights and social reform. Esteemed author Elaine Showalter tells the story of Howe’s determined self-creation and brings to life the society she inhabited and the obstacles she overcame.


    This is an excellent biography of Julia Ward Howe.  In case you are unsure of who Ms. Howe is, she is the author of The Battle Hymn of the Republic, which first appeared in the February, 1862, issue of The Atlantic Monthly magazine and was considered by many as the Civil War’s battle song of the Republic.   While this hymn was her claim to fame, Ms. Showalter gives us a complete look at Howe’s life from birth in 1819 to her spiritual re-birth and her death in 1910.  The book covers her early years and young adult years well, but goes more in depth regarding her courtship with Samuel Howe and her married life.  Julia really came into her own in midlife and beyond, where she laid the foundations for her legacy of civil rights support.   She was really an amazing woman who was a was a prominent American abolitionist, social activist, and poet.   This book gives you an intimate glimpse into her life and work. It is a must read for all you lovers of women’s history!