Staring a Book Club has been a decade long dream of mine. It finally happened about 18 months ago when two other friends and I starting getting together each month to read, discuss, drink wine, and have snacks! Sometimes very tasty snacks like mini-cherry tarts or fresh, warm-from-the-oven banana bread. Wait what was I writing about? My favorite recipes … no, my book club!
My book club has bigger benefits for me than just getting me to read more (I’ve read almost 150 books already this year) – it’s given me an opportunity each month for some great discussion about books, life, and even faith. We don’t read “faith-based” books all the time (or actually at all), but we do discover the faith in the midst of our discussions because it’s part of our lives. We can’t help but talk about faith when we gather to discuss someone else’s story!
But today’s post isn’t about my book club (although we’re always looking for new readers!), it’s about some books you can use for your Church’s new book club!
Don’t have a book club? Might be time to start one! I’ve heard Matthew Kelly talk about how much the Church would change if Catholics read just one great Catholic book every year! Just one book to help them think about their faith differently and to grow deeper.
In the past year I read two amazing books that would be perfect for your new club! They are about faith, able to be digested in one chapter increments, and perfect for discussion.
#1 Little Sins Mean A Lot: Kicking Our Bad Habits Before They Kick Us by Elizabeth Scalia (buy it here)
Elizabeth walks through 13 “little sins” that have big impacts on our lives. From things like procrastination to gossip to “treat yo’self” we all fall into these small habits that take over our lives. I loved reading this book and could not recommend it enough to friends. It completely transformed my life! I even turned it into a discussion night for my youth group when we were talking about what to do for Lent (notes)! It would make for a great discussion this Fall or tackling two chapters a week during Lent. Spend a whole year reading one chapter a month even – that’ll kick those little sins in the butt! A fun family activity for the whole family to “kick” this event off would be a Family Kick Ball Game! (Cheesy? You betcha!)
#2 Victorious Secret: Everyday Battles and How to Win Them by Laura Mary Phelps (buy it here)
This book is brand new and just a few chapters in, I could already tell it was a winner! I love how the title leads us to think one thing – and that the woman on the front is wearing a CAPE ready to do battle with her ROSARY!! This book is funny, spot on, and perfect for a book club. Bonus she has snack ideas built in: Chips, Salsa, Guac, & Sangria (Laura throws my kind of party!)!! Each chapter focuses on a different battle and provides a guide for prayer what to take on as your battle armor of the month. We face spiritual battles every day, but probably don’t recognize them for what they really are: Attacks from Satan. I don’t mean to be dramatic, but when you recognize who the enemy is, you can defeat him faster! And I always love a day when I can use this GIF!
What books are you using for your parish book club?
p.s. Those links above are to OSV’s very own online book store – and they have free shipping – always and forever, no matter how many or how few you purchase!