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My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir

4.3  ·  Rating details ·  1,881 Ratings  ·  241 Reviews
In this highly acclaimed and award-winning memoir, Colleen Carroll Campbell tells the story of her fifteen-year quest to understand the meaning of her life and identity in light of her Christian faith and contemporary feminism. Launched amid post-partying regrets in a Milwaukee dorm room, that search takes her from the baths of Lourdes and the ruins of Auschwitz to the Ova ...more
ebook, 240 pages
Published October 30th 2012 by Image (first published 2012)
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Mar 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, 2013-list
Bottom line: GREAT BOOK.

This was truly a look inside, and dare I say there was even a plot? I loved how there was a story woven throughout, and that the stitches of the story were some of my favorite saints.

In no way does Campbell give in to the temptation just to tell us about the saints in a long “we could find that on Google” lecture. She does not reduce the saints to her own take on them, either.

In fact, within this book is some of the best writing I’ve seen and a style that captivated even
Colleen Carrol Campbell, speechwriter for President George W. Bush, author of the critically acclaimed, The New Faithful: Why Young Adults Are Embracing Christian Orthodoxy, and host of her own international television and radio show, “Faith & Culture” which airs three times weekly on the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN)—among a host of other accomplishments—has now written what she calls ‘a spiritual memoir’. It is that and so much more.

As an aside, I thought I received My Sisters the
Read this for the first time one or two years ago. Read it again this weekend and liked it even more than I remembered. There was so much more that I picked up on faith, love, family, etc. this second time around. This is the book that introduced me to Edith Stein and St. Teresa of Avila, both of whom I am slowly working my way through their individual biographies. I will probably end up buying this book eventually to have for my own library. I highlighted a lot in the kindle, especially the par ...more
Nov 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book at a friend's recommendation, and the first chapter turned me off immediately. The book sat on my bookshelf for another year before I decided to pick it up again. This time, I found it very compelling. Once I got past my initial skepticism -- the author's struggles are not my own -- I actually found many similarities as the book went on. More importantly than whether or not I related to her struggles, however, I found that the author has this wonderful ability to look back on ...more
Apr 01, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, memoir
I was disappointed with this book. The best parts were the discussions of the saints. Though I have witnessed the effects of Alzheimer's and dementia in family members, I found Carroll Campbell's descriptions of her interaction with her father and this disease weak.
I also have to admit that I found her whiny in parts. Perhaps many of us would come off this way in a memoir. I almost put the book down while she was describing her dilemma while working as a speech writer. She wanted so badly to ge
Jan 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mostly enjoyed this, especially her explanations of Edith Stein's writings, who I am eager to read now!
Mar 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faith, memoir
I generally do not enjoy memoirs, and especially not spiritual/religious ones, but I actually liked this one. Campbell did a marvelous job knitting together certain saints with crucial moments of her life, relaying how their influence inspired and effected her character and guided her spiritual development at different hardships throughout life. The memoir reads like a story, starting when Campbell is 20, in college, and feeling an acute emptiness... and ends when she was 36, after having endure ...more
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
I thought I was "led" to read this book because the description on the jacket sounded right up my alley: a woman trying to locate herself and her beliefs somewhere in contemporary feminism and in religious teaching, who looks at female Saints to gain insight into her own struggles. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. I was halfway through the book before I even realized that our ideologies were strikingly different, so I don't believe my dislike of the book has much of anything to do ...more
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Upon picking up this book, you might recognize the author's name as she is the host of EWTN's show Faith and Culture. She also writes for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and blogs for the New York Times and Washington Post. In a nutshell, this is Mrs. Campbell's autobiography of her spiritual journey so far.

In addition to being an autobiography, we also get a glimpse at key female saints in the Catholic Church. Drawing on these saints, such as Mary, Teresa of Avila, and Dorothy Day, Mrs. Campbell te
May 16, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to like this book much more than I did. The writing is excellent, both in style and tone, so that wasn't the problem. I think it was just that my life has been so different than hers, and I already have devotion to these saints, that I didn't really "learn" anything from this book. This had the effect of lowering my liking of it. I'm fairly sure this is just a me thing, and not a reflection of the worth of the book itself.
Jul 26, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh...this one is a tough one to review. It is her journey so who am I to "review". This is a very Catholic book and is probably best read by very devout Catholics who grew up in Catholic homes.

I wanted to like this book more than I did. I am happy for the author that she is blessed with her religion and her family and much success.

At the risk of criticizing this spiritual journey book, I am only giving it 2 stars.
Natasha Childress
Not at all what I judged the cover to be, but exactly what I needed... good mixture of saintly stories and personal witness with words of wisdom from each that I have already found helpful. An easy and insightful read.
Mary Porter
Aug 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I could not put this book down. I found Colleen's story so relatable and she put into words much of the struggles I faced during my own father's sickness and death. Her faith journey throughout the different tunnels she traveled through is inspirational. A must read!
Emily Davis
Apr 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: family
Happy Wednesday.

I’m determined to catch up with book reviews that are WAY overdue. So here we go…

First up is My Sisters the Saints by Colleen Carroll Campbell. Published by Image Catholic Books.

Ms. Campbell is Courageous – She is in the public spotlight because of her past and present careers (EWTN for one). She shares so much of her experience with life lessons with falling away from faith (as so many of us do in college) and fertility and caring for an ailing parent, and that is courageous by
Dallas Nateweyes
my sisters the saints
Nov 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My Sisters The Saints~

Once I began this book, I couldn't set it down any longer than was necessary.
Colleen Carroll Campbell writes like she's talking to friends- she gives us the gift of her story and she tells it with intensity.

She asks a lot of questions- what does it mean to be a woman?
What do I do about work and goals and choices?
And how do I live through waiting and suffering and falling in love?

Colleen begins with the day she realized that she wanted- needed- something more. She was a
Jan 18, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: women, religion
My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir by Colleen Carroll Campbell begins with Colleen as a young twenty-something, nominally Catholic college student who slowly begins exploring her Catholicism as a way to decipher what it means to be a woman.

Colleen explores the faith through the guiding influence of six different women saints of the Catholic Church: St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux, St. Faustina, Edith Stein, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, and Mary, mother of Jesus. The book worked
Mar 01, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Julie by: Byron B.
Shelves: spiritual-memoir
This engaging memoir is the story of “a twenty-first-century woman in a two-thousand-year-old church.” Campbell is a successful journalist and a devout Roman Catholic whose questions about life as a woman dig deeper than the typical questions about career-family life balance.
As a college student, the author begins to question the emptiness of her life and, finding feminist studies answer few of her questions, embarks on a journey back to the Roman Catholicism of her youth. She take as her guide
Jul 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs, saints
Ran into this little gem of a book at St. Patrick's bookstore, and decided to take a much needed break from the unending chemistry studies, to read it. Well, I'm really glad I took that break, because I now feel that I was called to read this book, at the right time in my life. In this little treasure, Colleen Carroll Campbell shares her spiritual journey, from her wandering and wondering college years through the literal fruition of her marriage. Colleen Campbell was George Bush's speechwriter ...more
Tee Minn
Jan 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. I love biographies and this dealt with work/life balance, marriage, fertility, faith, and loving a parent through Alzheimer's. Colleen Carroll Campbell describes her spiritual memoir with such openness and honesty. The book is categorized as female lit as she gives a fresh perspective to the gift of being a liberated woman. But what resonated with me, wasn't the personal woman's issues, but the clarity I gained regarding my own Catholic faith and a deeper appreciation of inter ...more
Mar 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: infertility, saints
I have been sitting on this review for a long time, and I'm still not sure how to rate it-- 4 or 5. I really enjoyed this read, and I could definitely see myself giving the book to others. I think a spiritual memoir must be an incredibly difficult type of book to write, and I thought the author crafted this one beautifully. I was prompted to read a biography of Edith Stein after reading Campbell's reflections on the saint's role in her life, and I identified strongly with many of the author's pe ...more
Deb Buckhout
I wanted very badly to like this book. I love the Holy women she wrote about. How could I not love the book?

I enjoyed the information on the saints, but the whiney way she wrote about her "difficulties" made me put the book down a number of times. And the final "problem" and her miraculous answered prayer - I'm sorry, it just about made me gag. I only wish life turned out so picture perfect for everyone. Basically what I read was: if you're a good girl, and follow these rules, you will be reward
Jun 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Campbell gives us a thought-provoking memoir detailing how her love of Catholic saints impacted the way she met her life challenges. I was especially interested in Edith Stein (St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross), who studied the meaning of womanhood in the twentieth century and defined the theory of spiritual maternity before being killed by the Nazis for being a Catholic of Jewish descent.
The combination of Campbell's personal story with her summaries of the lives OF several saints makes for a
Oct 12, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
Being a Gen-Xer, and a Catholic, and a woman, I thought I might be able to relate to this spiritual memoir, which details some challenging times in the life of a Gen-X woman, and the female saints she turns to during each crisis.

As it turns out, there was nothing relatable here. My fault, I am sure, but point by point, the author’s life is as unlike mine as any can be. Still, the book is interesting enough, for what it is.
Jun 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been a long time since I've read a religious book. But the title of this one jumped out at me from the shelves. Campbell's memoir chronicles her early twenties thru her thirties, through her crisis of faith in college thru marriage and motherhood. Campbell's engaging prose and heartfelt honesty in sharing her sorrows and joys, make this a memoir I thoroughly enjoyed. This is one for my shelf to reread and pass long as I get it back!!
Jun 18, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was a good story - kept my attention, most of the time, wondering where she was going next - but, to be honest, in my opinion, the author went on and on too long in some of her explanations; there were times when I was wishing she'd get to the heart of the matter a little quicker, because I was bored.
Betsy Dion
Feb 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
A great memoir of one woman's spiritual journey, structured around the saints that inspired her each step of the way. This is the type of book that will probably resonate differently at different stages of life, so I will likely reread it in a few years.
Dec 28, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really insightful glimpse into how to live authentic Catholic femininity and feminism in the 21st century. It was great to hear the voice of a modern, professional yet passionately Catholic woman. We need more of these voices in the Church!
Sep 11, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally finished it. The author does a great job weaving her spiritual journey to God with introducing saints who were influential in her life. It has led me to want to learn more about these holy women. As well as giving me an idea of what to expect with their stories.
Perfect book to read as a young adult. My soul needed this!
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Colleen Carroll Campbell is an award-winning author, print and broadcast journalist and former presidential speechwriter. She is the anchor of “EWTN News Nightly with Colleen Carroll Campbell,” a television news show that broadcasts from a studio near Capitol Hill and airs across the English-speaking world on EWTN, the world’s largest religious media network. She has written and contributed to num ...more
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“If productivity, efficiency, and rationality are not the ways God gauges a human person's value, then they are not the ways I should measure it, eiher. If childlike dependence on God is the mark of a great soul, then there are great souls hidden in all sorts of places where the world sees only disability, decay, and despair.” 4 likes
“Thérèse’s emphasis on the “little ones” of the world—her insistence that we regard them not as burdens or embarrassments but as conduits of grace—transformed my worldview and my work.” 2 likes
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