Walking Together Women's Ministry Newsletter

December 2023

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Women's Ministry Staff

Coordinator of
Women's Ministry
Barbara Prasad
573-635-9127, ext. 222

Administrative Assistant
Mary Madelyn Mertes
573-635-9127, ext. 228

Alphonse J. Schwartze Catholic Center
2207 West Main St.
Jefferson City, MO 65109-0914

Walking Together December 2023

A Message from Barb

You know well enough that Our Lord does not look so much at the greatness of our actions, nor even at their difficulty, but at the love with which we do them.
-Saint Therese of Lisieux

This past Sunday marks the beginning of the new liturgical year. For Catholics perhaps it is a good time to take some of our normal January 1st traditions and transfer them to this Advent season. As we begin Advent our readings all point us towards, not only preparing for the entrance of Jesus into this world at Christmas, but also towards his entrance into our hearts. It is not breaking news that this life is fleeting. That is why this time of year the readings also point us towards Jesus’s second coming and being prepared. Just like we prepare for the birth of a new baby we want to be sure we are preparing for our new life in Christ at the end of this journey. It is the real joy of the Christmas story. The beginning of the story of salvation.


So with that being said, a few years back my family started a new, New Year’s tradition. A friend of our daughters told her about how every year her family would choose a word of the year. This word would symbolize your hopes and dreams for the year. It was a fun dinner conversation starter and every once in a while we would check in to see if we were living “the word”.


I started that tradition for my role in this ministry. For me the word of this first year was surrender. I paired that word with a prayer, the Surrender Novena, which I have handed out at every event we have hosted this year. If you have not received a copy of that novena I have posted it on our prayer page under 2023 prayer of the year. It is a prayer I will still keep in my arsenal and will turn to whenever I am feeling the need to control all that is around me. If you have never done this novena I highly recommend it!


I have been praying over what this word and prayer should be for 2024 and had something in mind, but about a month ago another word just popped in my head and I haven’t been able to shake it. It seems like everything I read, the messages that are resonating with me, the inspirations from others all keep pointing to this word.  I must be honest it is not a word I would have thought I would choose. So drumroll, please, the word for the year is obedience. You can go to our prayer page to see the prayer for 2024 and I hope you will all join us in adding it to your prayer routine this year!


I had planned to kick this word/prayer off in our January newsletter but as so often is the case the Lord had different plans. I have been thinking over the past few days on what our Advent contribution could be to the women of our diocese. We are co-hosting 4 Advent reflection nights this week but I had also decided to post a midday motivation on our social media accounts as a little shared check-in for all of us. I was searching for the perfect theme. If you haven’t caught on yet I love themes! I was going to pair it with the themes of the weeks of advent: hope, peace, joy and love. I attended an advent reflection on Saturday and prior to attending prayed that I would some find some inspiration for this as I was really hitting this newsletter deadline and I was just not inspired. That is when it hit me. I remembered the new year tradition and the word I was pondering and I knew now was the time to kick off the new year! Why wait until January as Catholics our new year starts now!


So I hope you will join us this advent and check in on our Facebook or Instagram page on your lunch break to get a little daily dose of advent motivation. I also hope it will get you excited to join in with other women around our diocese this year in spreading the good news of the gift of our Catholic faith.


So how does the opening quote tie into this newsletter? Well it is the quote for my Advent motivation for today. Take a minute to go back and re read it.  Here is the reflection


The first week of Advent the theme is hope. As we explore this theme through the eyes of obedience to our Lord let us look with great hope at this quote for St Therese of Lisieux. Let these words sink in. Being obedient to the call of the Lord doesn’t have to be overwhelming! Neither should our plans for the Christmas holidays. He knows we are never going to get it completely “right”. Our decorations will never be perfect, our holiday plans will never work out exactly as we wish and our faith life will never be traveled on a straight and unwavering path.


Midday Motivation: Let us look with hopeful anticipation as we begin this Advent season. While we are called to obedience it is balanced by the knowledge that we have a kind and merciful Savior who will walk this journey with us. Today try to imagine even your most mundane task being done with a heart of love.


Happy New Year! And have Blessed Advent




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Our Mission

Supporting women in their journey to sainthood through providing opportunities for growth in prayer, fellowship, service, and faith formation/education.

Our Vision

A community of women that look to the Church as the center of their lives and who actively seek to share the joys of their faith with others by participation in the life and mission of their parish.

What's New in Women's Ministry

Opportunities to Gather

Join us this week at one of our Advent Nights of Reflection. We hope to see you there!
Evant Advent All

Faith Formation Book Studies

Check out our December featured book of the Month 

Also give your book recommendations for our quarterly Faith Formation studies for 2024

New Opportunities to Serve

Get information in how you can join in the efforts to grow women's ministry throughout our diocese

Bright Ideas

Is your parish offering a ministry program or event you would like to share?  We are working on building a portal of ideas for women working/volunteering in ministry to access. Please send us information on what is working in your parish. Email ministry ideas to bprasad@diojeffcity.org and help us build a portal that will inspire us all.

Check out our December  prayer challenge of the month