Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Review: Magnificat Subscription

Several years ago, I received a sample copy of the Magnificat, and watched as it gathered dust on my night table. The concept of the Magnificat appealed to me. I just didn't know how to make it a regular part of my prayer life.

For the past three years, I have bulk-ordered subscriptions of Magnifi-kid for my homeschool group. Created by the same people, Magnifi-kid is a kid-friendly weekly missal, filled with that week's readings, activities based on the liturgical calendar, stories of saints, and definitions and explanations of parts of the mass. Every time I've been on the Magnifi-kid website, I've paused at the Magnificat pages, wondering again if I might find this to be a useful addition to my prayer life.

When the opportunity came up to sample Magnificat again through The Catholic Company's Reviewer Program, I took it. Chris, the Free Book Dude, sent me a copy of the July Magnificat in mid-June and I spent a little time glancing through it. Then I relegated it to a spot on the top of my nightstand, hoping that this copy would not just be a dust collector.

I am happy to report that it has not collected any dust. Right from the start of this month, I've been using this little book at least twice a day. In fact, this month (more than any other), the Magnificat has been a lifesaver for me. You see, in addition to morning and evening prayers for every day (which have given me some more structure to those prayer times), the Magnificat includes the readings for daily mass every single day of the month. And this July, I have been having a very hard time getting to daily mass.

Typically, when I can't get to daily mass, I try to spend some time reading the day's readings. If I can do it online, I do. But many days, I end up flipping through a book of devotions that lists the day's chapters and verses, and then digging in my Bible for the correct pages. It doesn't take very long, but many days, I get lazy and end up skipping this important part of my prayer life.

This month, with the Magnificat so very handy, I've been able to keep up with the daily readings, even when DH's work schedule and family vacations have kept me from my daily mass. My morning and evening prayer time has benefited from the structure provided by the Magnificat.

And I am learning all kinds of new and interesting things... between daily profiles on saints and daily meditations based on the readings.

I have been pleasantly surprised to see just how handy this little book can be... just how much it has enhanced my prayer life. I am always a little hesitant to make a full year commitment to something I've only tried once, so I plan to pick up a copy of the August Magnificat to see if this continues to be a useful tool, or if it was a coincidental help during a particularly busy month. If the Magnificat proves to be as useful to me in August, I will definitely be adding a Magnificat subscription to my wishlist.

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