By: Danielle Bean
Manual for Women is for women who seek to grow closer to Christ and his Blessed Mother, for women who seek to discover or rediscover what it means to be a woman after God’s own heart.
In Part I, noted Catholic author Danielle Bean, using examples from Scripture, the lives of the saints, and modern life, reminds women of today to embrace and cultivate their distinctive gifts:
- Receptivity, or an openness and welcoming spirit toward others.
- Sensitivity, or an ability to see and understand the needs and feelings of others.
- Compassion, or an instinct to suffer with and alleviate the suffering of others.
- Beauty, or the recognition that the female body is a reflection of her great capacity for nurturing, whether she ever becomes a mother physically or not.
- Generosity, or an extraordinary capacity for self-giving love.
She also reminds readers that they will embrace those gifts most perfectly if they imitate that most immaculate of women, Mary of Nazareth. Bean concludes with practical advice which every woman, whatever her state in life, will benefit from.
In Part II, readers will be nourished by the depth and richness of the Catholic tradition’s teaching on women. Church documents, wisdom of the saints, relevant passages from Scripture, wisdom from today’s Catholic women, prayers, and hymns will inspire, delight, and edify women, young and old, single and married, consecrated to God in the religious life or a member of the laity.
Now, perhaps more than ever, women need to be women. But what it means to be a woman has been so distorted by the various ideologies that the modern world imposes. Manual for Women serves as a reminder to women that authentic femininity (and, yes, authentic feminism) springs from an embrace, rather than a spurning, of the great and unique gifts God has bestowed on them, whether they be married or single, in religious life or a laywomen, a homemaker or a women who works outside the home, or, as so many women in today’s hectic world are, some combination thereof!