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Birthing the Holy: Wisdom from Mary to Nurture Creativity and Renewal

Author: Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE, OBLSB
Ave Maria Press
Publication date:
April 8, 2022


Award cover
Awarded third place in contemporary spirituality by the Catholic Media Association and third place in inspirational books by the Association of Catholic Publishers. (Awards list here)
Named a Best Spiritual Book of 2022 by Spirituality and Practice.


Do you long to feel more alive, to see the vibrancy in your daily life? Do you feel the seeds of a new calling tugging at you?

Look to the Blessed Mother for help. In Birthing the Holy, Christine Valters Paintner—abbess of the online Abbey of the Arts—invites you to better know Mary and her heart through thirty-one of her titles, and, along the way, you’ll nurture the new growth in your life.

The Blessed Mother is known by many beautiful titles, some of which are familiar—Virgin, Queen of Peace, and Star of the Sea—and some we may not be aware of—Vessel of Grace, Greenest Branch, and Our Lady of Silence.

Paintner offers a flexible format to reflect on Mary’s titles through a thirty-one-day personal retreat, a series of novenas, or with visio divina exercises using striking images by printmaker Kreg Yingst. As you reflect on Mary in her role as Mother of Good Counsel, Woman Clothed with the Sun, Mystical Rose, Mother of Sorrows, Queen of the Angels, and other titles, Paintner invites you to hear what God calls you to develop in your life, help that dream or vision grow, and then nourish it in the world.

Whether you’re meeting Mary for the first time in these magnificent titles or revisiting her as a beloved companion, Birthing the Holy invites you to see the exploration of Mary and your life as a spiritual and creative act, one that can help deepen your faith even as it sparks new growth within you.

Birthing the Holy Around the Web


US Catholic: Learn to Take Your Troubles to the Black Madonna

Today’s American Catholic: She’s the Inspiration

Podcast Interviews:

Listen to Christine’s interviewed on the podcast How They Love Mary

Listen to Christine interviewed on the podcast Out of the Fog

Watch Christine interviewed on the podcast Spiritual Wanderlust

Christine interviewed on Catholic Faith Network Live

Praise for the Book

Every name for Mary, like every name for Christ, opens a window to another dimension of a mystery that will never be exhausted. We need a whole litany to even begin our pondering of Mary and the gift she is for us. Christine Valters Painter gives us just that in this richly textured retreat for the contemporary believer.
Ann M. Garrido
Associate Professor of Homiletics, Aquinas Institute of Theology
Even if you have known Mary all your life, you will encounter her afresh here in deeply nourishing and empowering ways. Drawing upon centuries of art, theology, and spiritual tradition, Christine Valters Paintner leads us into the sacred act of co-creation with God while Kreg Yingst’s beautiful block prints guide us in thoughtful contemplation of our Mother Mary, ever ancient, ever new.
Cameron Bellm
author of A Consoling Embrace
Keen insights and fresh perspective on the life and meaning of Mary, the Blessed Mother of Jesus.
Fr. David L. Guffey, CSC
National Director, Family Theater Productions

Birthing the Holy should appeal to anyone who has learned from Paintner in the past and will likely expand her community of readers to include those increasingly drawn to seeing and experiencing the holy through images and spiritual practices with the Divine Feminine.

Read the full review.

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