Looking for a Catholic role model? A saint or super hero to be your guide? Look no further than Supergirls and Halos: Maria Moreno Johnson’s guide to heroism for Catholic moms and their girls.
I received a copy of Supergirls and Halos for review. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. I receive a small commission of any purchase made via those links.
Mama, I’m gonna tell it to you straight. Your self image impacts your daughter’s self worth more than any other factor.
More than your daughter’s relationship with her father.
More than your daughter’s relationship with her peers.
More than the messages your daughter gets from TV and social media.
What you think about yourself, believe about yourself, and say about yourself forms those same things within her – as if parenting weren’t hard enough.
While most of the research focuses on body image, it’s not hard to apply the findings to a young girl’s global self worth. It’s a phenomenon I’ve noticed in my own two daughters, seven and 11: their school day comments often mirror what I say about myself.
I’m quick to admit I’m not an organized person.
Mom, I’m awful at keeping my room clean. You know I’m a total mess.
I frequently voice doubts about my professional efforts.
Honestly, mom, I’m just not very good at this. Can I do something else now, please?
I have a tendency to express self-defeating attitudes when I’m tired.
You know I can’t read, mom. I’m never going to learn how to, either.
They’ve picked up the habit well.
Women have a tough time in society. To begin with, our messages are mixed. And because the secular world at large doesn’t yet embrace the truth of Catholic teaching, we spend an inordinate amount of time fighting for the good and the beautiful in our everyday lives.
This is not a bad thing. But yes, it is ridiculously hard.
Mama, I get out of bed in the morning just like you, bleary-eyed and praying nothing goes wrong. Because it’s not just our own safety and salvation for which we have to account. We’ve got several other small (and not-so-small) people to care for, love, and evangelize. The stress – not to mention our own ridiculous expectations – can lead to some not-so-pleasant thoughts.
We have to fight these desolations, not just for ourselves but for our girls. And I’ve got a few practical, easy suggestions, inspired by my new favorite book.
Supergirls and Halos: A Guide to Heroes for Catholic Moms (and their Girls)
Maria Moreno Johnson is a woman after my own heart.
She’s an English professor. So am I.
She loves science fiction and fantasy. So do I.
She’s enamored with the legacy of strong female women in the church. So am I.
And I’m totally in love with her newest book.
In Super Girls and Halos, Johnson picks up where My Badass Book of Saints left off. Only this time, she pairs each Catholic saint with a corresponding fictional heroine, revealing how each woman sought for and won virtue through the course of her life.
Johnson divides the book into four main sections, each one focusing on a cardinal virtue. The section in turn feature four separate women – two heroines and two saints – whose life experiences not only mirror one another in some way, but reveal the beauty in embracing the Cardinal virtues of our faith:
- Wonder Woman and St. Katharine Drexel
- Rey and St. Clare of Assisi
- Black Widow and St. Mary Magdalene
- Dana Scully and St. Theresa Benedicta of the Cross
- Storm and St. Cunegonde
- Hermione Granger and St. Marguerite D’Youville
- Katniss Everdeen and St. Mary McKillop
- Uhura and St. Kateri Tekawitha
Johnson’s pairings are genius; her insight real and raw. I felt closer to these women, both real and imagined, more than I ever had before (and that’s saying a lot, because I have lived and breathed Harry Potter, The X-Files, Star Wars, and Star Trek for most of my tween, teen, and adult life). And while I’ve always had a solid understanding of the lives of the saints and their role in my life, Johnson portrays them as real people, like a friend I could go out and meet for tea. It’s that intimacy which allowed Super Girls and Halos to bring me back to the essence of what it means to be a woman – what it means to embrace the goodness God has imbued within us all.
So now that I’ve read the book, how am I going to put it into action, for my daughters and myself?
- I’m going to learn to love the way God made me, beautiful flaws and all.
- I’m going to seek out and recognize my own super traits.
- I’m going to read about and recognize the role models we’ve been given, then share them with my daughters in a way they can understand.
And I’m going to encourage you, dear mama, to find your superpower.
We’ve all got one; even the saints were normal women whom God has transformed from within.
Don’t listen to the voices that haunt you. Don’t let your daughters join the slide. Embrace the power God has placed within you.
Your daughters will see it, and in your reflection their lives will shine.
(You can win a copy of this awesome book AND check out reviews from other bloggers at Reconciled to You.)
Like this post? Sign up for my Catholic womanhood newsletter (you’ll get a set of Rosary meditations for Catholic Couples, absolutely free!)
And – before you go – did you know there’s a Catholic Mom Bundle just in time for Advent?
13 ebooks, workbooks, printables, and courses from 13 AMAZING Catholic bloggers, including Kelly Mantoan, Lydia Borja, Lorelei Worland, Kimberly Cook, Sterling Jaquith, me (!), and more. Want to see what’s in it? Want to know how much it costs? All of this wonderful material would cost you over $180 if you bought it separately. But! If you buy it through the bundle, it will only cost you $19.
Come on. Check it out. You know you want to 😉