Saturday, January 26, 2008
Article from yesterday's front page
Author's 'journey' to include Vatican
By: Emily M. Olson 01/25/2008
Donna Marie Cooper O'Boyle's journey as an author has really progressed since she published her first book, "Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers," in 2005. With Blessed Mother Theresa as her inspiration, this devoted parent is sharing her faith and her experiences on the road-both in person and online.
She writes a blog almost daily, communicates with hundreds of readers and speaks at retreats, spiritual study groups and at book-signings around the state and in New York. As life-changing as the experience has been thus far, nothing prepared her for the invitation she recently received to visit the Vatican for a women's conference with a program based on the writings of the late Pope John Paul II.
After the successful release of her first publication through Our Sunday Visitor Publishing, Mrs. O'Boyle wrote "Heart of Motherhood" and "Prayerfully Expecting," which have also been well-received. This year, Mrs. O'Boyle has three more books being released: "Catholic Saints Prayer Book," which she will speak about and sign copies of at a promotional event in Chicago in May; "Unlikely Saints," a biography and memoir of her relationship with Mother Theresa, and a study book on motherhood that is still untitled. It is intended to be used by spiritual study groups in churches and other religious organizations.
Despite her newfound fame, the mother of five has remained humble and believes she is doing God's work, guided by the spirit of her mentor and friend, the late Mother Theresa, who inspired her to write her first prayer book.
"There's a saying in the Bible that tells us, 'Don't hide your light under a bushel.' I think I'm shining that light by doing the Lord's work, and what's happened is just amazing to me," Mrs. O'Boyle said. "It's not really about me, though ... I always remember that what's happening here is about helping other people."
So when she received a letter from the Vatican inviting her to attend a conference celebrating the writings of Pope John Paul II, she was thrilled, nervous and excited. Mrs. O'Boyle will leave for the Vatican Feb. 2 with two of her daughters in tow, joining a congregation of 250 other guests for an international conference that is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the apostolic letter "Mulieris dignitatem," written by Pope John Paul II in August 1987. Hosted by the Pontifical Council for the Laity at the Vatican, the event will be held at the Hotel Palazzo Carpegna. The theme of the conference is "Woman and man, the humanum in its entirety."
"To be invited to participate in this conference is such an honor. I'm so blessed," Mrs. O'Boyle said during an interview Wednesday morning. "We'll be taking part (See story here.)