Wednesday, September 26, 2018

What's New?!

We are constantly trying to add "things" to do or see at St. Mary's so that our customers can visit and have maybe a little different experience than they've had on a previous visit or in another store or even online. This summer we have been full of new ideas that have been fun for us and that have truly been a hit with customers.

One such idea is a display in a small section of the store which includes book recommendations from the priests in our diocese as well as some of those who work in the Pastoral Center, Joan Watson from Adult Formation and Bill Staley from the Youth Office. I love to hear the comments from the "out of towners" who begin with, "Wow! Your priests give book recommendations?! That's awesome." And I agree. It is awesome. We are so fortunate to have such an amazing group of men who are willing and anxious to feed our spiritual lives. We have put the names of the priests inside the books along with a list of the books they recommend. Ideally, you love one recommendation and come back for another. Also, people like to see who recommends what. Of course, there are some duplicate recommendations, especially in the classics category but for the most part, it's a great mix. The titles will change about every three months. The guys need time to read!

So we invite all who have not been down lately or who are just curious for a little more, to come visit. Stay awhile. Drink a cup of Mystic Monks coffee. Sit in St. Luke's Loft and chill. We'd love to have you. Oh, and I'll have even more on the changes in the next few weeks so stay tuned.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Great Adventure

Couple of things. Many days I just walk around the store and snap pictures of the merchandise and the displays that my mom and sister and coworker Cathy so beautifully put together. Ya know. Just in case I ever need the info or the images. Last week on my mom's birthday, my daughter posted a beautiful tribute on our St. Mary's Bookstore facebook page and at dinner that night I read her all the wonderful, kind words from our friends and customers. That morning, she said, "I woke up and said, 'It's my birthday. What do I want to do?' and she thought, I want to go do displays at the Bookstore, I want to go to noon Mass and I want to paint." So, that's what she did as well as join a small bit of her family for dinner. As I was thinking about posting the new Great Adventure Bible and Walking with God books, I noticed my mother's cane in my picture which she parks when she's doing displays. I find it's not by chance that her cane sits beneath the title, "Walking with God."  (story of her life). And without being too corny, I'm sure she'd say it's been a Great Adventure! And, the adventure continues...

The Great Adventure Bible is an awesome new tool to learn Scripture. It is color coded to help with the timeline and event coded to pull out key milestones on the narrative. Other features include Christ's words in red, color maps and pull out charts that tell about the history of the people, rulers and geography. The links above will give you more descriptions and information about the Bible, the Children's Book and Walking with God. And to add to our amazing new Scripture study helps, our local author Sonja Corbitt has published Fulfilled: Uncovering the Biblical Foundations of Catholicism. Check them out. The pictures can't possibly tell the entire story. Come visit. It's always a great adventure.

Monday, July 9, 2018


PENNIES FROM HEAVEN
“Oh every time it rains
It rains pennies from heaven
Don’t you know each cloud contains
Pennies from heaven
You’ll find your fortune
Fallin’ all over town
Be sure that your umbrella is upside down
Traded them for a package of sunshine and flowers
If you want the things you love
You must have showers
So when you hear it thunder
Don’t run under a tree
There’ll be pennies from heaven
For you and me"

Whether you’ve heard this from Bing Crosby or Billie Holliday or St. Mary’s Bookstore, the outcome is always the same... to have "the things you love"!! And that's just what we want you to have; from sunshine and flowers after the rain, to books and sacramentals on sale from your favorite local bookstore.

When my mom moved the store from 6th Avenue downtown to 1909 mid-town, she added a few members of her Cursillo group to help her. In the 1980s, when discussing a summer sale, Mimi Heer came up with the idea of “Pennies from Heaven,” and we’ve used it ever since. The idea is to have tables of overstock items or slightly defective items and other goodies starting at a penny and going up from there. The sale is truly heavenly and has been a popular tradition within the bookstore, and with our customers, for years.

Please join us as we continue this tradition. We know you will find some true treasures. 

Monday, June 18, 2018

I Get Asked A Lot ...

"What medal is that?" "Where did you get it?" "Why do you wear it?" Many people I know wear medals they have received as gifts, from aunts or grandparents who "knew they would actually wear it", from places they have traveled, for protection and for devotional purposes. I personally own more medals than I could ever wear all at once. Medals that have been blessed by popes or in holy places. Medals that have been handed down from loved ones. Medals that I have purchased while traveling. Each and every one has significance to me. I have worn a St. Gerard medal for 29 years when it was given to me by one of our vendors after the loss of our first child and upon the birth of our oldest on earth. The only time I have taken it off for any length of time was when I put it over the head of a friend on her way to the hospital to give birth (she was a bit worried but all went well, of course). I also continually wear my Miraculous Medal that I received after my consecration to Mary and my scapular medal, because with promises like that, how can I not?! Last but not least, I wear a medal of St. John of God, patron of booksellers. I also often wear a shorter chained medal, usually something from a Marian Apparition; Fatima, Lourdes, or Guadalupe just because they are beautiful and they fill me with memories of being at a certain Grotto or apparition site.

Now don't get me wrong, I know that it's not as simple as putting a medal around our necks and POOF, protected or holy or instant sales or whatever. I know that these medals are simply reminders for us to pray to Our Lady and Our Lord and the patron Saints. They are reminders of promises to cling to faith and hope and love. They are reminders to visit and to listen. They are reminders of those who have come before us, the community of believers who have paved our way, who have planted seeds and who have prayed for the future of the Church on earth.

I get asked a lot, and so we ask you...what medals do you wear? Why?

Saturday, June 9, 2018

What to Get Dear Ole Dad for Father's Day

We are nearing that time when dads, young and old, are getting ready to jump for joy upon receiving gifts for Father's Day. So we've been thinking...why not find something to go with the traditional mug or tie or hand-made bookmark to show our appreciation for dad? Hmm. Maybe some Mystic Monk Coffee to go with that Mug or a cool Scapular Medal to wear with that tie or a new daily prayer book for his bookmark.

As patron Saint of fathers, St. Joseph is a great example of the role a man plays in his family and the importance of fatherhood in general. Here are a couple of gifts related to St. Joseph for Father's Day.


St. Joseph Statue
Scapular Medal
St. Joseph Daily Prayer Book
The truth is, St. Joseph's available all the time in prayer. Ha! Being an awesome father can be difficult and yet we know many who have gone above and beyond the call of duty. God bless our dads on their special day and throughout the year. May they stay close to their Patron St. Joseph. May they emulate his goodness and his care.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Visitors Old and New - Gifts of the Spirit

I just have to say, last week was quite a week! A week of new customers from Dallas and California and Ohio and Oregon and probably many other places we were not told, as well as a week of regular customers from in and around Tennessee and Kentucky. A week of people with stories; stories that share the good stuff. And when we share the good stuff, we share Him. His Spirit. His work. His Love. His healing. His goodness. We share faith in Him and hope in our future with Him. And for today, I'm going to share one of those stories.

Thursday, May 31st, the Feast of the Visitation, on my day off, I was at the movies with my youngest and received a text from a long time family friend who's mother has been struggling with her health. She was in town and actually at the hospital close to the store. She had finished 33 Days to Morning Glory or True Devotion to Mary or Preparation for Total Consecration, one of them, and was ready to Consecrate herself with her mom. She needed an image of Mary over at the hospital and asked if someone could run one over. Immediately I could feel goosebumps. I told her to call the store and ask my daughter about the Consecration medal I had found the previous Sunday at none other than the Flea Market. (I thought it was a medal of St. Dominic receiving the rosary or a Scapular medal but after cleaning it, found it to be an old Consecration medal of Mary with the words "True Devotion to Mary" engraved in the book on the front and the back with a large M in a shield with a crown on top and the rosary draped down the side. The medal available now seems to have totus tuus on the reverse.) A minute later she texted and said her father came in so she was headed to the store. My daughter showed her the medal and told her all we knew about it and before it was all said and done she was crying and she had my two daughters and sister crying right along with her. I received a text soon after; "thank you for letting Mary and the Holy Spirit use you today." I thought just the opposite, "thank you for a bringing us the gift of the Spirit." And, thanks to all who visit and call and make our life here at St. Mary's a "gift of the Spirit." We cherish the time.



Thursday, May 24, 2018

Do We Ask Her Enough?

On this Feast of Our Lady of Good Help, I am reminded to ask myself, "Do I ask Mary for help, for all I need, for all the needs of others, to intercede? Do I ask her enough? Almost 2,000 years ago her Son gave her to us through the offering to St. John at the base of the cross, "Behold your Mother."

And again, over 150 years ago, Our Lady appeared to Sr. Adele Brise in Wisconsin and told her, "I will help you." There is now a beautiful Marian Shrine built on the site of this approved apparition. (the only approved U.S. apparition, Visiting Mary: Her U.S. Shrines and their Graces)

And today, as we go about our day to day activities, as we worry about our jobs, our parents, our children and our nation, as we stress over how we can afford tuition and house payments and car payments, as we struggle with health issues, can we hear her voice? In the stillness? In the quiet? "I will help you." Do we visit her? Do we believe? Do we ask her enough? On this Feast of Our Lady of Good Help, we are reminded to accept the gift given at the base of the cross by Her Son. She is our help in this world. Pray for her intercession. Pray the rosary for peace. Allow her to help us.