Merciful Sister Saints: St. Therese & St. Faustina : Celebrate!


Hair Bows 4 Life the blog St. Therese and St. Faustina

We will soon be celebrating the feast day of these  two great saints, St. Therese  and St. Faustina.    I never thought much of these two saints as being sister saints until last year.  Last November, a book change me in a profound way ,   33 Days to Merciful Love: A Do-It-Yourself Retreat in Preparation for Consecration to Divine Mercy  .(This is an  Amazon Affiliate, therefore if you click on Amazon link and order anything, we get a small advertising fee at no cost to you.)


It was the first time that I had notice how St.Therese and St. Faustina message of Divine Mercy was truly one in the same.    Their hard work  of showing the world that God’s love is a merciful love, will fill one to the ends of times. 

Their main purpose was to show through their lives and words and words of Christ;

  that God’s mercy  is for all  sinners.

St. Therese advice to her sister, ” Do not fear, the poorer you are the more Jesus will love you. He will go far, very far in search of you, if at times wander off a little and Jesus message to St.Faustina,  ” The greater the sinner, the greater the right he has to My Mercy”  are just a glimpse of that message for us. 

Father George W. Kosicki has a very interesting article on the  Similarities in the Lives of St. Therese and St. Faustina.  One aspects  of their similarities, that I believe units them as sister saints is the one of  suffering for souls.

In St. Thérèse’s Oblation to Merciful Love she thanks God for the grace of passing through “The Crucible of suffering.”   In her Passion of suffering and darkness in her dying of tuberculosis, she said: 

“It’s only to save souls that I want to suffer.” On the day of her death, she exclaimed: “Never would I have believed it was possible to suffer so much! Never, never! I can only explain it by the ardent desires I have had to save souls (see Bp. Guy Gaucher, The Passion of Thérèse Lisieux, p. 183-185).

In hundreds of entries in her Diary, St. Faustina records her reflections and those of our Lord on suffering for the salvation of souls, especially sinners. She also died of tuberculosis. Like St. Thérèse, her attitude toward suffering can be summarized in an equation: Suffering + Love = Joy

Saint Faustina echoes the response of St. Thérèse in the amount and extent of suffering:

O Christ, if my soul had known, all at once, what it was going to have to suffer during its lifetime, it would have died of terror at the very sight; it would not have touched its lips to the cup of bitterness. But as it has been given to drink a drop at a time, it has emptied the cup to the very bottom. O Christ, if You Yourself did not support the soul, how much could it do of itself? We are strong, but with Your strength; we are holy, but with Your holiness. And of ourselves, what are we? — less than nothing … My Jesus, You suffice me for everything else in the world. Although the sufferings are severe, You sustain me. Although the times of loneliness are terrible, You make them sweet for me. Although the weakness is great, You change it into power for me. (Diary, 1655)


These sister saints died at a young age in a  painful sufferings while offering it up for  souls with Jesus.  

Honor them today and everyday by showing God’s merciful love in all you meet.  Celebrate them!



St. Therese


Image result for st. therese of lisieux coloring pages


St. Faustina




St. Therese the Little Flower Craft {Liturgical Ornament} ~ Catholic Inspired


St. Faustina Kowalska Craft {Liturgical Ornament} ~ Catholic Inspired

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Here are some great gifts ideas of St. Therese and St. Faustina. Please support small Catholic business! Click on the image of the gift you want more information and it will take you to their store!

St. Therese

No automatic alt text available.           Saint Thérèse magnet


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ST. Faustina


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Have a blessed feast day filled with God’s Mercy and His peace.

With the Love of Christ,

Cecilia @Hair Bows 4 Life

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Sunday with the Saints: Wonder Women: St. Rose & St. Philomena!

Sunday with the Saints Hair Bows 4 life the blog

Sta Rosa de Lima por Claudio Coello.jpg

Saint Rose of Lima by Claudio Coello (1642–1693),

Saint Rose of Lima, the first canonized saint of the New World ,is a beauty and pure saint. Her feast day is coming up on August 23rd.

she was remarkable for a great reverence, and pronounced love, for all things relating to God. This so took possession of her that thenceforth her life was given up to prayer and mortification. She had an intense devotion to the Infant Jesus and His Blessed Mother, before whose altar she spent hours. She was scrupulously obedient and of untiring industry, making rapid progress by earnest attention to her parents’ instruction, to her studies, and to her domestic work, especially with her needle.” – Catholic Encyclopedia  

A role model for today’s young ladies to obey, work hard, and love endless.

I am always amazed of the new things I learn of these saints during my research for the series of Sundays with the Saints.   Did you know that St. Rose of Lima, foretold the exact date of her death? And so great were the numbers who came to her wake that they had to postpone the funereal for days.

“Apart from the cross there is no other ladder by which we may get to heaven.” St. Rose of Lima

Reading this quote of her gives us so much hope and peace in these days, where suffering is everywhere and it seems that our crosses are heavy. Yet if we use this ladder with love and joy, we are sure to reach our goal; HEAVEN!

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St. Philomena.. oh, a dearest saint of mine. We just celebrated her feast day on August 11th but I wasn’t able to get my act together to write a post so I add-on here with St.Rose of Lima. These two lovely young lady are so much alike, ladies in roses.

St. Philomena is prayed to by people of diverse ages, culture and social standing around the world. The young virgin who was martyred at age 13, willingly traded her earthly life for heavenly salvation and continues her work today promoting the virtues of purity and sanctity among the world’s youth and bringing the faithful closer to our Blessed Mother and Jesus Christ. It would seem she was held in quiet reserve by God for nearly seventeen centuries and summoned at a time when so much uncertainty and absence of faith abound. – Sanctuary of St. Philomena

St. Philomena is such a dear saint to me. During the hardest time of my life, after losing Benedicto,  we were bless to attend a very special mass at church in Philadelphia of the Shrine of St. Philomena (which has a first class relic of her), were the pastor of the Shrine in Italy where her body is , was attending this mass. The mass was pack to the max and we were there waiting for the start of the procession.  I recall praying to her asking her to help me during this time of suffering and lose.    A few minuets later, this over whelming smell of roses over came me. I had to take a quick seat due to the impact of the smell. I knew that she was there, she was bringing me a rose off the cross of Christ. I had this healing that knowing that this suffering is full of the sweetness and love of Christ. 



Here are few books worth having in your library to celebrate their feast day.

St. Rose of Lima: The Story of the First Canonized Saint of the Americas (Stories of the Saints for Young People Ages 10 to 100) . My kids love this book, it such an easy read and nice read aloud (even the older ones stay behind to listen to it. )


A Sister Marie Story: Saint Philomena, HELP! by [Henderson, Christine]

 A Sister Marie Story: Saint Philomena, HELP!  

I was honor to review this book. My young daughters enjoyed this take on Saint Philomena through the story of Sister Marie.   Sister Marie does a lovely job of  teaching about St.Philomena to our young readers. This books gives a great an example of living out virtues through Sister Marie as she tends to the poor, sick, helpless as well bring knowledge of an amazing saint. I sure hope that Author Christine Henderson continues to bring other saints to our readers through Sister Marie.


Coloring Pages:


Rose of Lima   Saint Rose of Lima Catholic coloring page: Feast day is August 30th




A picture to colour. Symbols of St. Philomena.    Saint Philomena My favorite Saint I want to be just like her.

Saint Philomena by Immaculata Helvetia, via Flickr


Here are some sweet crafts that can be added to celebrating their feast days.




Who doesn’t like lovely snacks to go along with a feast day!

Rose of Lima Cookies


Apple Roses, it looks very easy and yummy.Puff Pastry Apple Rose Recipe. "You don't need to be a pastry chef to bake this deliciously tempting rose-shaped dessert. It tastes just like apple pie. And it looks a lot like a beautiful red rose. Made with naturally sweet apple slices, sprinkled with cinnamon and rolled up in a perfectly crispy puff pastry." - Manuela from Cooking With Manuela.



Here are some gift ideas from small Catholic Business. Please support these amazing ladies.

St. Rose of Lima felt doll from My Little Felt Friends.No automatic alt text available.

St. Philomena necklace from Sagely Sparrow.

A St. Rose of Lima necklace or St.Philomena bracelet over at Ave Maria Faith  CraftsImage may contain: 1 personImage may contain: jewelry


St. Rose of Lima rosary bracelet from Rosary Heart and Home.


St.Philomena Rosary Chaplet from Come Holy Spirit Rosaries


Saint Rose of Lima Wood Figure – Handmade & Hand painted – from In the Loft , Sue DowImage may contain: 1 person


St. Rose of Lima Sleepy Doll by Marzipantz


I pray that you find this post helpful in celebrating more saints.  You might be interest in our Immaculate Heart of Mary post as August is the month of Immaculate Heart.  

As I am gearing up to start school next Monday, check out Back to School Big Sale we are having over at Hair Bows 4 Life .

Back to School Sale Hair Bows 4 Life the blog


With God’s merciful Love,

Cecilia @HairBows4Life






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Happy feast day of St. Joachim & St. Anne : A NFP (Personal Story) Awareness.

Today, the church honors the parents of Our Blessed Mother, St. Joachim and St. Anne, grandparents to Our Lord. 

We are bless to know that we have St. Joachim and St. Anne as patron saints of  grandparents and infertile couples.  

Perfect time as  we are also in the midst of NFP Awareness Week, Natural Family Planning.

   NFP as stated by NFP Interenational is ,

NFP is a way of following God’s plan for achieving and/or avoiding pregnancy. It consists of ways to achieve or to avoid pregnancy using the physical means that God has built into human nature.

The key point here is following God’s plan and some times, God’s plan doesn’t go along with our plan.   I can understand that to core of my being .   Our NFP story isn’t much to tell really.   We didn’t really focus on it before we got married nor did we think 4 months later, we would be blessed with being pregnant.  All my life, All I dream of was to have a large family to fully love .   

My case with NFP wasn’t always a happy one. I have to say that I had a love-hate relationship with it.  I mean I thought, I am pro-life, open to life always, why did I need NFP.

 But God in his great wisdom shares with me another take on NFP. 

I imagine that it was going to be easy  to have more children.  Then we lost our very first son, Pablo de Cruz .   It was a surprise pregnancy (I think all pregnancy are a surprise)  yet again but one that we were so happy to see! The lost was a cut to core of my soul.   NFP got really interesting since I really wanted to know what was going on with my body, why was I not pregnant again.  We use NFP to help us achieve pregnancy with our  healthy son. 

  After our son was born, we were yet blessed again with a pregnancy 8 months later which I gave birth to sweet baby girl.  There was no time nor energy to really get into the NFP  and 20 months later baby girl number 3.  

I felt that I was living my dream, even thu it was crazy with 3 kids in diapers at one time and a six-year-old but I love it. Every minute it. I wanted more. 

A year later after our latest baby girl was born, we lost a girl, Martha .  It was hard times for me. It took a lot of time with NFP and trying to follow God’s plan.  Fast forward two more years, pregnant with a sweet baby boy who never seen the beauty of this side of heaven .  Losing Benditico was the most suffering I had ever endure in my whole life.  No- one was meant to  deliver a silent baby,  NO-ONE was to endure that. 

But in His greatest wisdom, He holds us through our suffering so that we can bring souls to His Mercy. 

God must have really needed my suffering for some great cause that one day I pray that I will truly understand as once again,  a year and half later, we lost our last son, Juan Deigo. 

For a very long time, I felt so alone in the sense since I had four beautiful children whom am I to feel the pain of sub-infertile ,  to complain, to ache , to want more.  I felt, I had too many for the  secular world and not enough for the Catholic world…

There wasn’t much left in my core .  I took NFP as an enemy for whatever crazy reason.  I saw others who prevent pregnancy as selfish, lack of love.  I was dead wrong.  But since God out does us in generosity, He heal me in my brokenness and show me, that I don’t need another child,  I needed HIM! Him alone.  After that freeing moment , I never look at  NFP or anyone else situations  the same. 

I just looked with love and mercy.

After 8 long years,  I do have now a sweet baby girl who is the joy of my life along with her brother and 3 sisters. I am so blessed that I can’t even begin to count.   But I have felt the hell of not achieve pregnancy for a long time and losing part of my heart to my Heavenly children. I have pray  endlessly to  this couple whom we celebrate today!  

God is all good. His plan is perfect.

Now, remember we all have a story to tell, not inventory to count.

With the Love of Christ,
Cecilia @Hair Bows 4 Life


St. Joachim & St. Anne Hair Bows 4 life the blog


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Sundays with the Saints: St.Joan of Arc – May 30th

Sunday with the Saints Hair Bows 4 life the blog

Joan of Arc listening to his voice | Léon-François Bénouville

St.Joan of Arc

May 30 Feast Day

Joan of Arc is a very interesting saint! We are getting to know her even better ever since we moved close to New Orleans.  Every year on her birthday, which happens to be Epiphany on January 6th there is a major  parade in the French Quarters. Yes, it’s New Orleans with plenty of parades to make one sick of them but this one is different.  Let this article explain. 

The parades.tells the story of Joan of Arc’s life in chronological order all the way through to her sainthood. An array of marching groups — including the Amazons, the Chorus Girls Project, the Muff-a-lottas and Skinz and Bonez — parade in costume and are led by the Kilts of Many Colours Bagpipes and Drums group. Parade battalions figure prominently, including The Gates of Orléans, Joan’s Trial and, new to his year, one representing Joan of Arc’s hometown of Domrémy.

Highlights include toasts from The Historic New Orleans Collection and Grégor Trumel, Consul General of France in New Orleans, from the Williams Research Center balcony at 400 Chartres St.; a sword blessing at St. Louis Cathedral by the Very Rev. Father Philip Landry; and the crowning of the king and a king cake ceremony at the parade’s conclusion, at Washington Artillery Park.

There also will be a group of court jesters carrying a birthday cake for the Maid of Orleans, who is selected each year through an application process and who is joined by New Orleanians in the community portraying the French king and queen who supported Joan in her battles against the English. (While the French were victorious, Joan was captured by the English, tried and convicted and burned at the stake.) The New Orleans Advocate

St.Joan of Arc parade Hair Bows 4 Life the blog

The picture doesn’t do it justice since it was taken by my husband’s cell phone but it gives you an idea of the parade.

I also like that they throw to those watching some neat stuff from handmade Joan of Arc dolls to even Joan of Arc medals. The first year my kids attended, my son received a very nice sword made out of wood. This beats all those ugly beads from the other parades! My children enjoy this parade and it is something fun to do on Feast of the 3 Kings!

This was 2 years ago with one of my husband’s co-worker.

Barabara Beckwith  from Joan of Arc: God’s Warrior: A Seven-day Retreat, reflections is just perfect, I believe about Joan of Arc.

Joan of Arc is like a shooting star across the landscape of French and English history, amid the stories of the Church’s saints and into our consciousness. Women identify with her; men admire her courage. She challenges us in fundamental ways. Despite the fact that more than 500 years have passed since she lived, her issues of mysticism, calling, identity, trust and betrayal, conflict and focus are our issues still.

Read more about  Joan while you pray over at St.Joan of Arc Novena.

Here are some books, coloring, and snack ideas to celebrate to this amazing young saint, Joan of Arc.  


Saint Joan: The Girl Soldier (Vision Books) (Affiliate)

We got this for one of girls for the Feast of the 3 Kings. I just love this series of books, they are perfect for read aloud!

Saint Joan of Arc: Quest for Peace (Affiliate)

This is one of the kids favorite books that it doesn’t have the cover any more.  They just love this book!

Joan of Arc (Affiliate)

This book we gave to our oldest daughter and it is about the best book written on Joan of Arc. It really blew my mind away and I found it very interesting that it was written by another New Orleans /Louisiana/Mississippi famous writer, Mark Twain!

Coloring Pages:

This print out about the virtue of obedience goes perfect with Joan of Arc and helps the kids to understand the virtue. 

Image result for joan of arc paper doll                        Image result for joan of arc coloring page

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This packet below is free over at Teachers pay Teachers by Catholic Cutie which includes:
1 May Calendar
1 May Blank Calendar
1 Shield/Virtues Coloring Page
1 Domremy Childhood Home Paper Cut Out
1 Mini Saint Statue
1 Saint Joan of Arc Poster Page

May Catholic Saint Calendar Activities - Saint Joan of Arc


Nothing like having beignets and coffee at New Orlean’s famous Cafe Du Monde to get a sense of French style breakfast (dessert more like it).

beignets Hair Bows 4 Life the blog


Pillsbury has a very simple recipe or if you more of a homemade from scratch this recipe from Taste of Home seems easy and do able!



Check out Joan of Arc , Litanies at Catholic Tradition

Saint Joan of Arc, patron of France, my patron saint, I ask you now to fight the is battle with me by prayer, just as you led your troops to victory in battle.

You, who were filled with the Holy Spirit and chosen by God, help me this day with the favor I ask

[here say your intention].

Grant me by your divine and powerful intercession, the courage and strength I need to endure this constant fight. Oh St. Joan, help me to be victorious in the tasks God presents to me.
I thank you and ask you for your continuing protection of God’s people.

Joan of Arc, Pray for us!

Joan of Arc Hair Bows 4 Life

Joan of Arc Hair Bows 4 Life

Visit us at Hair Bows 4 Life and order your Joan of Arc now to get it in time for her Feast day on May 30th!

Use JoanArc  for 10% off your order!

With Love of Christ,

Cecilia @HairBows4Life


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