Testifying to the life-changing and joy-giving power of the sacraments, Catholic author Nancy Jo Sullivan shares how moments in her life and that of her late daughter Sarah—who had Down syndrome—unexpectedly triggered a renewed faith and deeper relationship with God and others.
With startling and courageous clarity, Nancy Jo Sullivan recalls the journey that led her to renew and reclaim the faith of her childhood that had gone dormant until she experienced it through the eyes of Sarah, her child with Down syndrome. Her artfully told story in Couriers of Grace challenges us to see the sacraments anew, deepening our own faith and reminding us of the beauty in each sacrament.
Small events in Sarah’s life—in which her daughter’s vision and voice helped those around her to realize the preciousness of their life and faith—trigger Sullivan’s reflections on moments in her own life and on the sacraments. Childhood memories of almost drowning surface at Sarah’s baptism, as Sullivan feels the same powerlessness at the thought of raising her disabled daughter that she felt when she thrashed desperately in the water. Through the words of the priest as he pours the baptismal waters on Sarah, Sullivan realized how Baptism draws us from the overwhelming waters in our life to the light of life with God. Our journey with Sullivan continues through the sacraments until the end of Sarah’s life, when memories of Sullivan’s father’s fatal heart attack collide with her internal debate of whether it is time for Sarah to receive the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. Sullivan realizes that this sacrament, so often associated with death, is really meant to give us life and hope.
Couriers of Grace includes an appendix with meditations and reflection questions for personal or group study.
"For those of us who have ever taken the sacraments for granted without truly discovering the remarkable grace of sacramental joys all around us, Sarah and Nancy Jo Sullivan serve as our guides to seeing God's bountiful grace all around us. Don a tiara or grab your crown, linger over these lovely pages, and prepare to have your heart expanded and your soul sweetly serenaded."
Lisa M. Hendey
Founder of CatholicMom.com
and author of The Handbook for Catholic Moms
"We are constantly surrounded by signs of God's presence, yet so often they go unnoticed. By opening her heart and sharing the intimate story of her daughter Sarah’s earthly journey, Nancy Jo Sullivan awakens the reader to the signs and wonders of God in everyday life and, at the same time, draws us into the seven sacraments in a new and profound way. Like the sacraments themselves, Couriers of Grace invites us to slow down, encounter Christ and 'breathe in the fragrance of God’s unconditional love.' If you’ve ever wondered where God was during the trivial times, the trials, and the triumphs of your life, this book is a must read!"
Kelly M. Wahlquist
Founder of WINE: Women In the New Evangelization
and editor of Walk in Her Sandals
"Anyone who knows and loves a person with special needs will relate to the stories and reflections shared so skillfully by Nancy Jo Sullivan in this book."
David and Mercedes Rizzo
Authors of Spiritually Able: A Parent’s Guide
to Teaching the Faith to Children with Special Needs
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