Introducing A Vibrant, Catholic Children’s Magazine Appealing to REAL Kids

If you ever dreamed of a Catholic magazine which would capture your children’s

interest immediately yet hold it as they delved deeper, look no further than St. Mary’s Messenger.

This attractive magazine, for 7-12-year-olds, entertains as it deepens faith at the same time.
Everything from the colour scheme, the layout and quality of images to the fascinating interactive fun pages tell me that professional staff, who also understand children, put this publication together.
 The editors and writers must be parents and/or teachers because they  know what appeals to real kids. Kids can smell a phony, pious publication a mile away, but the tone of St. Mary’s Messenger is direct and unpretentious with a  vibrant spirituality that connects with real kids.

Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Laughing, Loving, and Crying Through 36 Years of Marriage: 10 Years & Then Some

Melanie Jean Juneau 10 & Then bio picMy husband and I answered 5 questions about marriage for Karee Santos on her blog, Can We Cana? A Community to Support Catholic Marriages. This post was part of a series.
Today we welcome Michael and Melanie Jean Juneau to the series How to Stay Married 10 Years & Then Some. Michael and Melanie live on a small family farm in Canada, where they raised their nine kids. I know Melanie from her excellent work at the Association of Catholic Women Bloggers and through her prolific writing. Today Michael and Melanie explain how suffering doesn’t have to crush a marriage, instead it can lead to great joy!
1. How many years have you been married and how many kids do you have?
We have been married for 36 years, and we are still in love. Surprisingly, we really have become one, deeply in tune with each other’s spirits. Our tangible joy is inexplicable through secular eyes because from all outward appearances our life together has been a tough journey including poverty, nine kids, overwhelming chores on a small family farm and clinical depression.
One priest gently consoled us by explaining we have lived through “trials by fire.” Another friend, not given to dramatics, once pointed out to my adult children,“You do not realize it, but your parents have suffered deeply.” I have a running joke on the typical marriage vow about for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. I say, “Well, we’ve seen worse, poorer and sickness and we are more than ready for better, richer and health.” Then I dissolve into gales of laughter.

Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Pope Francis: The Greatest Modern Pope?

Theology Degrees contacted me, wondering if I would share their latest infographic entitled “Pope Francis: The Greatest Modern Pope?”  The information  on this infographic is a concise history of Pope Francis, where he came from, what he believes and how he fits into both the history of the Church and modern Catholicism. It is an invaluable aide to help people get to know a little bit more about this unique pope.

To view the infogragh click here

Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

The Power of Prayer, a Baby and a Stressed Grandma

The story of our grandson’s 8 hour surgery to reshape his skull. 
Before this surgery, I did not realize how stressed I was till someone in France passed on a word from God for me on Pinterest. God was giving me a gift of joy. IMMEDIATELY the fear gripping me left and I started grinning as joy slowly bloomed in my heart.This experience was an example of how the Mystical Body of Christ functions. It is an incredible reality.  continue
Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Plea for Prayers: Baby Facing Major Neuro- and Plastic Surgery

Craniosynostosis – the coronal suture has prematurely fused
My ten month old grandson is a happy, quick, engaging little fellow who was born with the plates of his skull fused together prematurely. As a result, he is facing major surgery to cut the plates and reshape his head which has grown lopsided. Emmett’s surgery is on Wednesday Nov. 19 at 9am Eastern Standard Time. The surgery will take between 5-7 hours, but it could take up to 10 hours.
Details of the surgery are as follows: an incision is made from ear to ear, the skull is removed from the orbital bone to the centre of the head. After the neurosurgeon removes a piece of his skull that has fuse prematurely, a plastic surgeon will reshape the skull.  Then the surgeon will put it  back together using plates and screws which are made of a dissoluble substance. They use between 150-200 screws. There is a 50/50 chance Emmett will need a blood transfusion.   continue reading
Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

DUNG-COLOURED GLASSES

When I am miserable, nothing, not riches, nor prestige, or a change in circumstances, nothing can change my interior unhappiness.

We love to make fun of those in love, the young and the naive who view the world through rose-colored glasses.

But what about the rest of us, those of us who wear dung-colored glasses? 

We should chuckle just as loudly when we realize this tendency to see darkly.

 Our entrenched paradigms, and our refusal to take off our dung-colored glasses,  prevents us from experiencing a new life when it is offered to us by Christ.

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Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Ezekiel’s Bones and The Church

Pope Francis invites us to read Ezekiel chapter 37 which describes the Spirit of God breathing life into a Valley of Dry Bones. Francis always emphasizes that God is in charge and in control of the Church, not man. In Ezekiel, it is God who, through the prophet, sends the Spirit upon the skeletons. Ezekiel humbly admits he doesn’t know what God’s plan is. Similarly, it is God Himself who breathes His life into the Body, the Church.
Francis explained that”the vision of Prophet Ezechiel, in which God’s Spirit gives flesh and life to a field of dry bones, is a foreshadowing of the Church, filled with the Spirit’s gift of new life in Christ and united in fellowship and love.”

In addition, it is important to notice God sends Ezekiel in the midst of a rebellious house of the exiled Israelites. The dry bones are Israel, cut off from the of life God. By zeroing in on this scene of the Valley of Dry Bones, the pope makes a parallel connection with individual members of the modern Church who act like the rebellious house of Israel, “with the experience of division, of jealousies, of misunderstandings and marginalizations”. He said this “dismembers us” and moreover is the beginning of a war. “War does not begin on the battlefield: war, wars begin in the heart, with this misunderstanding, division, envy, with this fighting among each other”.
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Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Change Me

In my own arrogance,
and with the idealism of youth,
I tried to mold myself
into a new, better self
all on my own.
I immersed myself in the culture and literature of the Church,
embracing simplicity and a disciplined prayer life
taking myself on
through spiritual direction and inner healing.
I spurned materialism and the culture of modern society
as I mothered nine children on a small farm
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Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Atheists Need Compassion Not Condemnation

It is easy to become self-righteous or defensive when I feel attacked by atheists. It is a natural, human reaction. However, indignant rants which bludgeon the unbeliever with the ‘truth’ treats them as objects and not an intelligent people who are also loved by God. 
 When I am  secure in the Love of God, I can love and respect everyone because I do not feel threatened.  Then it is possible to encourage real dialogue which actually listens to the crux of  atheists’ concerns and doubts. Such dialogue opens the door for the Holy Spirit to become the Divine Moderator of the discussion.

1 Corinthians 13:

4 Love is always patient and kind; love is never jealous; love is not boastful or conceited, 5 it is never rude and never seeks its own advantage, it does not take offence or store up grievances. 6 Love does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but finds its joy in the truth…..9For we know only imperfectly… 12 Now we see only reflections in a mirror, mere riddles, but then we shall be seeing face to face. 

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Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9 

Angels are Real


Angels are not wispy, sweet little things but rather  powerful, spiritual entities of light who guard us, fight for us, bring us the word of God and heal us. Angels always point us towards heaven, to join in worship and praise of Christ .


Angels saved my son’s life.
The phone call comes on a Saturday night.
I listen to the police in shocked silence.
“Your son has been in a serious car accident.”
” All I can tell you is it seems that the vehicle did flip end over end and then barrel-rolled down into a ditch filled with water.”
” Off the record, I will say that in 25 years of service, I have never seen a car look as bad as his does and not have someone dead on arrival.”  continue>
Melanie Jean Juneau is wife and mother of nine children. The very existence of a joyful mother of nine children seems to confound people. Her writing is humorous and heart warming; thoughtful and thought provoking with a strong current of spirituality running through it. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life.She blogs at joy of nine9 and mother of nine9