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On the streets of New York

As soon as I walked out of Penn Station and hailed a taxi, I got a taste of the pope-mania that has taken over New York. My cab driver, Kenneth, who is not Catholic, told me as we drove to the media center at the Sheraton Hotel that the pope “has some good lessons” to teach. Then he went on to say that there’s a “nice spirit” enveloping New York, as evidenced by the fact that there really were no terrible traffic problems today — at least not for him — despite road closures surrounding papal events.

Kenneth told me that New York “needs a big blessing” and then said that, despite not being Catholic, he watches EWTN regularly and would love to get to see the pope one day, and maybe even get to Rome. Read more

What’s new today

With so much going on with the papal visit, it’s hard to find time to think or blog about anything else. But here’s some book-related news worth sharing. Gary Stern of Blogging Religiously (the religion blog of The Journal News) has an entry on my book today. You can check out what Gary has to say about me and my Idiot’s Guide by clicking HERE.

Chiara and Olivia made the OSV papal blog today. You can see what they were up to by clicking HERE.

Now I’m off to pack for my trip to NYC tomorrow…

Look at what you helped make happen

Good news folks. I received word from my publisher, Penguin/Alpha Books, that a second printing has already been ordered for my latest book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism. I just want to thank all of you for buying my book and spreading the word. I am surprised and humbled by the way things are going so far. Now I need to keep the momentum going, so tell your friends or parish staff if you think my book is something they might like, want or need.

If you haven’t yet picked up a copy of the CIG to the Catholic Catechism, click HERE and head over to Amazon, where there are lots of nice reviews. Or, if you live in upstate New York, stop by St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Delmar on Thursday, April 24, at 7 p.m., where I will be speaking and signing copies.

Here’s my latest book news…

So I finally presented a signed copy of my book to Bishop Howard Hubbard of Albany today. It was a very nice visit; the girls and Dennis came along. Noah was at play practice, so he had to miss out. The bishop gave Olivia a beautiful Tau cross and Chiara a little gold dove pin, which was such a nice surprise.

In other book news, for any Not Strictly Spiritual fans out there in western New York State, I will be on Western New York Catholic Weekly with host Kevin Keenan on four different radio stations this Sunday: WBEN/Buffalo at 6:05 a.m.; WCJW/Warsaw at 6:30 a.m.; WLOF/Buffalo at 10:00 a.m., and WJTN/Jamestown at 7:00 p.m. I will be posting the interview early next week in case you want to check it out.

For those in the Rockland-Westchester region, keep an eye on The Journal News for a story on the pope’s visit. Gary Stern interviewed me for that story, so hopefully you’ll find me there some time between Sunday and Tuesday. I’ll link to the story as soon as it’s posted.
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What people are saying…

The Curt Jester reviewed my book today, telling readers that it is “a quite useful addition to the number of books concerning the Catechism.” If you want to read his full review of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism, click HERE and visit his site, which is worth visiting any day of the week. It’s a daily stop for me.

If you don’t have time to get to the review today, here’s a blurb:

“I found the Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism to be totally in conformance with the Catholic faith and presented the faith quite well. There are plenty of sidebars to further explain words and concepts likely to be unfamiliar to the reader as is common with these types of books. It is also written in a manner easy to read and she uses some humor in her explanations. Though she does not let the humor get in the way and mainly keeps to explaining the various paragraphs of the Catechism. As you would expect there are paragraph reference numbers to the Catechism throughout the book…Mary DeTurris Poust’s book is an excellent entry into the field and one I can recommend to those looking for a solid introduction that is also light reading.”

The full review is also up on my amazon page, which you can get to by clicking HERE. If you’ve read my book and would like to post a review on amazon or as a comment to this entry, please do so. Thanks!

What I really said

If you happened to read the brief “profile” on me in today’s Times Union(and even if you didn’t), I would like to give you the “director’s cut,” the full and accurate answers to the reporter’s questions — in the order they were asked. I won’t bore you with the personal details he asked at the beginning, which most of you already know.

Why did you decide to send your children to St. Thomas School?

We were happy with the public schools, but we felt that sending our children to St. Thomas was a natural continuation of our involvement at St. Thomas parish and our professional careers. Religion is not just taught in one class; it permeates the entire atmosphere at the school, from the classrooms and the Masses and prayer services to the focus on social justice.

Your new book is “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism.” What is the Catechism? 

I consider it to be an operating manual for Catholics. People think of it as a rule book, but it is so much more. It is an all-encompassing book on Catholic teaching, covering everything from the creed and our understanding of God to the sacraments and the Ten Commandments.

For me, this started out as a professional project but it quickly became a spiritual journey. It forced me to go deeper into the teachings of my faith than I ever had before. It was an intense experience, but in researching and writing this book, I noticed a change in the way I was hearing the prayers I had been saying my whole life. It was like I was hearing them for the first time.

So much of what we hear about Catholic teaching is given to us in snippets and out of context in the media. The full Catechism of the Catholic Church gives you a broad sense of where the teachings come from. It goes back to Scripture and Tradition and weaves everything together. When you see the teachings in context like that, it’s really beautiful. Read more

Thank you!

It’s late and I’m exhausted, but I have to take a few minutes to say thank you to all of you who came out to my book release and signing party on Saturday at The Book House. You made the day very special — and you bought every last copy of my book that was on store shelves, plus all the books I was hauling around in my trunk. I am awed and humbled by your love, support and friendship.

I know that Saturdays are busy days and you could have been doing lots of other fun things. Some of you drove hours just to shell out money for a book and eat some fruit and cheese. I am honored that you would carve out time from your very full lives to share in this celebration with me. Thank you.