Monday, May 26, 2014

Saving the World Though Our Families and Our Homes. A Visit With Leila Marie Lawler

It was a very early rise for me. Four-thirty in the morning is an hour ealrier that my usual start to my day.  But, Leila Lawler of the blog Like Mother Like Daughter and author of the new book The Little Oratory, was speaking at her daughter's parish three hours north of me and I wasn't going to miss it. When would another chance present itself?

Leila and I have developed an aquaintance through her blog and then through Facebook and Instagram. She is known for her Catholic dose of wisdom and humor.  Women young and old flock to her blog for advice on every topic. She keeps a running list on her sidebar.

I arrived at the church right on time.  Traffic had not been an issue that early in the morning.  As many of the young women of the church were readying the breakfast buffet, Leila was sitting quietly at a table reading the day's Magnificat.  I very quietly stepped over to her to test whether I should just wait, but her head popped up and her face broke out in a smile.  "Wanda", she softly said.  And I replied. "Leila".  We hugged, stepped back and then hugged again. Don't women do that?  Speak each others names as if affirming that we belong.

As Leila began to talk she spoke with such confidence and passion about her topic. We know from her writing that her faith is the center of her life and family, but to here her speak about all of our families with this same passion brought me to the edge of my seat.

Saving the world through our families and our home. What does this mean?  As she began to link it to The Little Oratory, I began to understand. This visible sign of faith that we experience in church, the altar, where The Eucahrist, the most visible sign of prayer, is offered to us. Our homes become a sanctuary, just as the church, where all should feel welcome.

I have pondered for years the relationships in the home.  My daughters are beginning their own families in a very different world than I did.  For some of them, there is no option to not work.  So how does this role of husband and wife, father and mother, stand strong and traditional?  How does this family maintain the structure God meant it to have?  Leila reminded us that the devotion to the home is usually the responsibility of the mother.  She has the desire and the gift of creating an environment of comfort and peace.  She makes the home.  The husband is the spiritual leader, protector and provider. In marriage, he leaves his mother and clings to his wife.  If this doesn't happen, then there is discord in the relationship God created.  Man changing God's plan to fit his own needs has a history.  All you need to do is read Genesis.

Leila's theme ....our homes will be the way we save the world.  Being the domestic church, living our lives in cycle with the church, praying the Liturgy of the Hours....this is how we evangelize.  With gentleness and reverence we become missionaries of our homes.


  1. how exciting to meet a friend through the blog world, sometimes this big vast world just gets cozy small with friendships and meetings :) PS You both look lovely!!!

  2. Thank you Karen!!! I have been blessed to meet several other bloggers. North Texas seems to be filled with them!!! I hope you are not terribly far away?

  3. Thank you for sharing was so hard not to go. I truly appreciate the highlights of her talk and I'm so happy you got to meet Leila!

  4. Such a blessing! I have my copy on order and anxiously waiting its arrival :)