Every Woman’s Journey: Answering “Who Am I” for the Feminine Heart, by Katrina J. Zeno, might sound like something you can pass on reading, and, if you’re like me, you might not ever pick it up off the shelf, unless it’s mailed to you as a review copy from a reviewer program.
This is the classic case of God’s sense of humor, because after page one, I knew that this book was for me. In fact, I’d warrant it’s for every woman I know, because though it is a Catholic book, it’s also resoundingly speaks to women today.
The tragedy of modern culture is its attempt to remove the billboard, to wipe out the Fatherhood of God. Nothing could be more harmful to the journey, to discovering our identity as women. If God isn’t our Father, then we aren’t his daughters. And if we aren’t his daughters, then we are orphans. We’re alone and destitute, with no one to help us.
Have you ever felt that way? If you’re like me, a better question might be, when did you stop feeling that way? I can put my finger on the when, to some extent, and it has to do with kneeling, with tears rolling down my face, in front of an altar, a crucifix hanging over my head. I stop feeling that way at least once a week, by the grace of God and the gift He gives me every time I will accept it.
This isn’t a thick book, or one that takes a lot of gray matter to process, though it sinks in and stays with you a while. Zeno has studied John Paul II’s Theology of the Body (in fact, she’s the one behind TheologyoftheBody.net!), and her application of it is, for lack of a better word, lovely. While JP2 is a bit, ahem, difficult (to say the least), Zeno is approachable.
I couldn’t help but wonder if she had a room in my head.
Instead of ignoring the pain in my heart or trying to rise above it, I began using the pain as a constant invitation to conversation with God. While working, folding laundry, or going to sleep, I allowed the constant ache in my heart to remind me to talk to God, to pray.
As I did this, slowly the pain began to feel different. Instead of a gaping hole through which all my insides spilled out, the would began to have a warmth, a presence. It became a divine wound that sparkled in my soul constantly reminding me of God’s presence.
I already have a list of women I’ll be sharing this book with, and it would be perfect for a group study (you know, in my free time). If you happen to read it, let me know what you think.
This review of Every Woman’s Journey was written for the Tiber River Blogger Review program, created by Aquinas and More Catholic Goods. For more information and to purchase, visit Aquinas and More Catholic Goods.