Jessica Mannen Kimmet was searching for spiritual resources in the Church that would guide her and strengthen her during her early years of motherhood. She was experiencing significant struggles and was confronting unmet expectations. But other than a few scattered blog posts here and there, she really couldn’t find anything that would respond to her need and desire. So several years later, she wrote the book she was looking for, a book where the Word of God is brought close to the experiences of new mothers, and to many more of us besides.
In her concluding chapter, she writes, “finding my way into motherhood has been a long, convoluted road. Progress through my pain was never as linear as I would have chosen. There were better days and worse days, improvements and relapses. There were moments of hope and energy, followed all too quickly by moments of anguish and despair. … [But] God makes all things new. Even me. Even you. God has the power to end all death and mourning and pain, and God promises to do so. In the meantime, God acknowledges our suffering and sits with us in it.”
Jessica’s book is for those times in between, when there is suffering and struggle, and therefore the real need for hope and companionship. The book is called Groaning in Labor, Growing in Hope: Scripture Reflections for the Hard Days of Early Motherhood. As an early reader of this book myself, I can assure you that many other people besides those in early motherhood will benefit from this book, including men, whether single, married, fathers, or even priests.
Follow up Resources:
● Groaning in Labor, Growing in Hope: Scripture Reflections for the Hard Days of Early Motherhood by Jessica Mannen Kimmet
● “Some Human Beings Carry Remnants of Other Human Beings in Their Bodies,” essay in Church Life Journal by Dr. Kristin Collier
● “The Theobiology of a Mother’s Voice,” essay in Church Life Journal by Dr. Kristin Collier
● “Forming Catholic Leaders for Mental Health, with Beth Hlabse,” podcast episode on Church Life Today
Church Life Today is a partnership between the McGrath Institute for Church Life at the University of Notre Dame and OSV Podcasts from Our Sunday Visitor. Discover more ways to live, learn, and love your Catholic faith at osvpodcasts.com. Sharing stories, starting conversations.