Meet Monica and Family

I am a wife, Mom of 5+ kids, a designer, an architecture school survivor, an author and a crafter.
My husband and I founded a Catholic apostolate called Arma Dei: Equipping Catholic Families, creating solid Catholic, fun teaching tools and gifts to celebrate and teach the Catholic Faith. I like to find activities and crafts that kids like to do. I also like to pass along other family-building ideas and traditions…to help justify the time I have spent putting into them. =) 

We live in Canada in the same, cute little town I grew up in.  We convert our swingset into a splash pad in the summer and our clubhouse becomes the launchpad for a luge run  that wraps around a hockey rink in our backyard, each winter.  We are the only people I know, who shovel the snow in our backyard before we clear our driveway.

Our Mission:

Equipping Catholic Families

Twenty years ago, a Mom of two young kids, I began collecting ideas for crafts and activities to celebrate and teach the Catholic Faith at home. Tapping into the Liturgical Calendar of our Church, what I thought would be just a little booklet for my Catholic Mom friends, turned into a 300 page book. When we weren’t quite satisfied with our publisher options, we decided to embark on a brand new journey of self-publishing. My business-prof-husband cold-called our growing directory of Catholic Book stores in North America and we carefully chose our family vacation routes by the Catholic Book Stores we could visit on the way.

We slowly but steadily grew our distribution network to over 160 bookstores and began attending Catholic conferences across North America.

Our Direct Order From the Pope

In 2002, while we still felt like a newbie Catholic apostolate, we received a mission for our initiative, from a real live Catholic celebrity and officially recognized Saint! During World Youth Day hosted by our city of Toronto, our beloved Pope John Paul II personally received a copy of my book. We are told that he flipped through the pages of my book, glanced at my picture on the back, and said “tell her to keep doing this for families”.

He then placed the book with his personal belongings to look over on his flight to his next event.

Direct Order from the Pope

A lovely addition to the story, is that he then heard the confession of his dear friend Elizabeth(and last remaining relative, the wife of his first cousin now deceased), who gave him our book. Knowing her hobby of knitting, he asked Elizabeth to knit outfits for MY three children (mentioned on the back of my book), as her penance. We received the three knitted  outfits within a couple of days of World Youth Day. We enjoyed many personal stories of Karol from their regular contact, as our friendship with Elizabeth grew.

Equipping Catholic Families with Crafts and Activities, Craft Kits and Cards to Teach and Celebrate the Catholic Faith

Since 2002, we have added a couple of kids to our family and quite a number of products to our Arma Dei Shoppe. We released a hardcover, illustrated Sacrament Journal in 2010 (illustrated by our daughter Kelly) and we launched Equipping Catholic Families early in 2011, featuring free crafts,  activities, and tutorials for celebrating the Catholic Faith.

We now have over 60 Catholic Craft Kit printables packed with Catechism, Prayer, Saints and Sacraments and over 140 Catholic Journal, Consecration, Saints and Sacrament Stamps available for journals, snail mail, scrapbooking, and Catholic crafts. We have three decks of quizzing cards including our Super Saints deck released for the World Meeting of Families in 2015. The Super Saints deck (illustrated by our daughter Kelly) is comprised of 55 Saint cards, with quick and quantifiable facts for fantastic card games and quizzing.

While Catholic websites have exploded with Faith formation resources for families, we have let our original Treasure Chest book take a back burner to our other Catholic tools and gifts. We are pleased to announce the most recent print run of books has just arrived and we’re eager to offer A Treasure Chest of Traditions for Catholic Families once again!

And now there’s a NEW book expected to arrive this Summer!

 

Stay tuned for the upcoming launch of our NEW book Prompt Me to Pray, this summer 2020!
You can
pre-order it here 

20% discount for pre-order!

or subscribe here for very infrequent updates about Prompt Me to Pray:

      Here’s a post about our family:
This is our

This is a special post I wrote for CatholicMom.com:
What NO Mom Wants to Hear

Comments

  1. Hello Monica

    We are waiting for the release of your new book indeed. Blessings
    RC Military Ordinariate of Canada

  2. Hi, I am the founder of “Catholic Doula Program” and we are trying to get the word out to other Catholic mothers and teens about our special courses we offer online training to become a doula, and new online parent classes are coming! So, what is a doula? A doula is a trained professional that supports the mother before, during, and after childbirth/labor. We offer non-medical comfort, physical and spiritual support. We train doulas from birth, postpartum, and bereavement. Check out our website at http://www.catholicdoula.com – I am wanting to know if you can put in some information on your site about us or interview me or let me write an article? Thanks so much!

  3. I love your tutorial for a chasuble…I only wish I had seen it before Christmas, when I made one for my grandson. Mine isn’t as nice as yours, but it does have one cool feature: it has a green cross on the front which is attached by velcro. It can be replaced by a red cross, or a white, violet, rose, or blue. Learn those liturgical seasons 😉

  4. Hi Monica,
    I am a DRE at a parish in Texas and I am planning an St. Nicholas Night to help our families know more about Advent. I would love to use your Advent Quest chain as a craft and have downloaded the PDF. But it would be used for more than just one class. Right now I have over 100 students signed up to come and I expect more. How can I purchase the right to use it for this event? Thanks so much!
    In Christ,
    Andrea Woolums

  5. Dear Monica:-

    I’m sending you this message because I read that you are an administrator of Catholic Bloggers Network. I’m trying to add my blog to Catholic Bloggers Network, but without success. Could you help me? My blog, Blog do ALAL, that is a blog in portuguese language, is a Catholic and a Pro-Life blog. If you understant portuguese access:-

    http://alal007.blogspot.com

    I’ll wait your answer!
    Thank you very much for your attention:-

    Alexandre Luiz Antonio da Luz
    Former-President of the Sociedade Protetora dos Nascituros Imaculada Conceição de Maria
    (Unborn Children Protecting Society of Immaculate Conception of Mary)
    Pro-Life movement of the Archdiocese of Curitiba (Capital of the State of Paraná – Brazil)

  6. Hello Bill and Monica,
    Br. Marty here from St. Benedict’s Monastery. I thought you would like to know that your website is out there and you must get some good traffic. I was out on Pinterest looking for material for school and retreats and while looking through other’s pins i clicked on a link. What a surprise as I was looking through the site I recognized the familiar faces of both of you. The kids well they are much older since last I saw them. Nice job and continued success with your business. God bless you and yours.

  7. Hi Monica & Bill,
    Hope you’re all doing well! We have a customer looking for 10 of the Cathletics Key Cards “Altar Servers”. Are they still available?
    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Pauline & Mick

  8. Hi – was wanting to contact you privately about a purchase question.
    Also – Which Homeschool Conferences will you be having your store?
    We love shopping here!

  9. Hi,
    I was looking through some of your ideas and noticed the ” Guess Who”
    game. You mentioned that I could get the templates free if I subscribed. I did that
    and I’m having difficulty in trying to receive these. I would appreciate any help
    you could give me.
    Thank you,
    Kate

    • Hi Kate,
      Thanks for commenting! I have sent you an email…but for any new subscribers, this is how it works for email subscribers (once they have confirmed their subscription).
      You will receive a “click here” link on the next email you receive through our regular postings at Equipping Catholic Families. This link takes you to a page where you will have access to a couple of our best FREEBIE printables available for subscribers.
      If you visit our Catholic Printables Gallery (https://equippingcatholicfamilies.com/cathletics-printables-2014.html) you will notice that many of our printables are free…or they become free once you use the special code presented in the description about the craft kit (near the “add to cart” button). Enjoy!

  10. We are on your mailing list and appreciate your work for the family! We are reaching out to ask you to become an affiliate and promote the Divine Mercy Rosary DVD to help reclaim the Family Rosary. Free to register.
    God bless and have a great day!
    Our trailer can be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0-xmVEsuWM

  11. Love your blog and thanks for the great content. I am also a mother of 5, provide a blog on daily living, provide spiritual development for women and retreats; along with some public speaking. I am doing a talk in Lent about teaching children about parables. I am presenting to parents of children the grade 1-6. Would you have any content, ideas that you have found successful. Would love to share those ideas and promote your creative site. Thanks.

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