Harrisburg Bishop Praises Women of Grace Program!

Johnnette signing copies of her new book, "Graceful Living," at the First Annual Women's Conference in the diocese of Allentown

Johnnette signing copies of her new book, “Graceful Living,” at the First Annual Women’s Conference in the diocese of Allentown

The Most Rev. Ronald W. Gainer, bishop of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, has issued a ringing endorsement of the Women of Grace program, calling it a program that has produced good fruits in the lives of women for the past decade.

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Memoirs of a Happy Failure: A Conversation with Alice von Hildebrand


Last fall I picked up a book in our parish bookstore – and couldn’t put it down.  Alice von Hildebrand’s Memoirs of a Happy Failure captured me with it’s title.  You see, it promised a glimpse into the life of a woman I had admired since encountering her work as a theology undergrad writing a thesis on spiritual maternity. Read the rest…

Lenten Exercises For You And Your Spouse

186123375Imagine you and your spouse driving down an open road and all you see out the window is an endless body of water, along with a beautiful beach and captivating sunset. What is your first thought? Is it the beauty of God’s creation? Is it the thought of how the water came to be? Does your husband want to go fishing? Or do you wish you could lie down and relax on the beach? Regardless of what your thoughts or desires may be, God created that image, even if it was a manmade body of water. He created the water, he created the sand, and he has complete control over the sunset. He may have even put those desires on your heart: the desire to relax and rejuvenate what may have been lost amidst the busyness of your schedule.

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Five Things No One Tells You About Marriage

Hello all Women of Grace blog readers! I hope you are enjoying your Fourth of July holiday week! I know it’s been a while, but I hope the wait was worth it because the topic I chose is for those who are not yet married, or, for very, very newly married couples. Read the rest…

Five Benefits of Marrying Within Your Faith

Couple reading BibleEver since I was a little girl, I always dreamed of marrying the man of my dreams. I imagined being romanced by an amazing young man, and we would live happily ever after. This is the simplicity of a young girl with high, long-awaited hopes of marrying her knight in shining armor. Read the rest…

Growing Holier as a Couple Through the Cardinal Virtues


Happy third week of Lent to all women of grace! If you don’t already know me, my name is Jacqueline Burkepile, and I’m a Catholic newlywed of about nine months. I wrote a blog for Women of Grace in January focusing on becoming a holier wife. I may not be the most experienced wife on the planet, but in nine months, I’ve learned a lot about marriage. I spoke with mine and my husband’s pastor, Fr. Kyle Walterscheid,[1] on how to approach this next blog, and I think you will enjoy the suggestions I have in store for you today. Read the rest…

Let’s Talk Menopause!

We have quite a few women interested in the topic of MENOPAUSE, mainly help with symptoms. First, we have to begin with some definitions so we are all talking about the same thing. Menopause is the actual cessation of menstruation; therefore the effective date of the menopause is the date of the last menstrual period. Convention has it that this cannot be officially determined until one year has passed without menstrual periods. The average age of the menopause is about 49 years with a normal range of between 37 and 56 years. The cessation of menstruation is caused by the marked reduction in ovarian function which occurs with age. However, due to illness some women have medically induced menopause.

The timeframe leading up to the menopause and then leading away from it for a year or two is often referred to as the perimenopausal period. As a woman approaches the time of menopause, she may encounter a variety of different situations. Her menstrual cycles may become somewhat more irregular, primarily due to the increased incidence of the anovulatory menstrual cycles. Remember, you have a period because you ovulated. No ovulation, no period. In addition, some women experience hot flashes. A hot flash is classically a warm or hot sensation that begins in the chest and moves toward the head and the extremities creating a flushing. The entire hot flash does not last more than 60 to 120 seconds. The natural course of hot flashes is for them to decrease or disappear over a period of 6 to 24 months, or longer in rare cases.

Common Symptoms of Menopause:

  • Hot Flashes Fatigue
  • Night Sweats Emotional Changes
  • Irregular Periods Weight Gain
  • Loss of Libido Headaches
  • Vaginal Dryness Depression
  • Mood Swings Memory and Concentration issues

One should always keep in mind that the menopause is a period of time in which most women and their families (including husbands) are undergoing a number of changes. All of the difficulties that are experienced at this age are not simply related to the menopause. It is a time when most families are growing up and the children are beginning to leave home. It is also a time when many husbands become very dissatisfied with their work but find it difficult to change because of their age. And, combined with the loss of one’s fertility that occurs at this time there are a number of reasons why women and their families may go through some difficulties. We cannot attribute all of this simply to the hormonal changes occurring around the time of the menopause.

Please let me know your thoughts, what you are experiencing and any specific questions.

Resources on Menopause:

Secrets about Bioidentical Hormones to Lose Fat and Prevent Cancer, Heart Disease, Menopause, and Andropause, by Optimizing Adrenals, Thyroid, Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, and Growth Hormone! By Y.L. Wright

Pope Paul VI Institute

Catholic Medical Assocation

The North American Menopause Society

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