Monday, April 16, 2012

Dispelling myths on saints and sex abuse
I talk to Catholic News Agency about the martyrs of chastity

Catholic News Agency today published an interview with me about my new book My Peace I Give You: Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints in which I seek to correct inaccurate notions of why martyrs of chastity such as Maria Goretti (right) are saints. My goal is to bring the healing truths of the Catholic faith to those who—like me—suffered sexual abuse in childhood:
Eden says she eventually found great solace when she realized that the Church "has always taught that virginity resides in the will to remain a virgin."

"According to St. Augustine's City of God and St. Thomas Aquinas's 'Summa Theologiae' – and this remains official doctrine today – a virgin," Eden explained, "who was raped is still a virgin in the eyes of the Church. He or she is not a 'secondary virgin,' but a true virgin."

In the case of St. Maria Goretti, Eden clarifies ... that Goretti's sainthood comes not from the fact that she "wasn't violated," but "because she lived a holy life and was always making of herself, body and soul, a gift to God."

"Because of her recognition that her body was a temple of the Holy Spirit," Eden said, “she resisted her attacker. But her sanctity came from her will to resist."
Read the entire interview on the Catholic News Agency website.

Catholic News Agency also has an excerpt from a chapter of My Peace I Give You.
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A personal message: I am very happy that my interviews with Catholic News Agency and the National Catholic Register interviews have come out just as My Peace I Give You hits stores, because that increases the likelihood that parishes and other venues will book me for talks this summer while there is still time. So far, I have appearances lined up in Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia, with possible dates in Michigan, Missouri, and New York (please e-mail me if you are in those cities and want me to speak at your venue). However, many more bookings are needed if I am to spend the entire summer touring, which is my hope.

The reason I need to tour this summer is because I want to get the message of My Peace out to as many people as possible, and the summer is the only time when I have leisure to travel. Since I am studying full-time at the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception towards a sacred-theology licentiate (a degree licensed by the Holy See, which I need in order to study in Rome for a sacred-theology doctorate), I will have to stay close to my home of Washington, D.C., during the fall.

So, if you would like me to come to your parish or other venue, please write to me (click here to see my e-mail address), and don't let a lack of funds stop you. I will volunteer my services to speak about My Peace I Give You anywhere as long as my transportation and accommodations (at a convent or private home) are provided by the sponsor. The message is that important to me; I see this as an apostolate.

Last, if you would like to support my plans to spend the summer volunteering to speak about My Peace I Give You, please consider making a donation towards my support. As a full-time student at a school that does not offer scholarships to lay students, I am living on student loans, my credit line, and the kindness of Dawn Patrol readers. If I see any royalties from My Peace, they will not arrive for at least one year. So, if it truly is God's will that I spend the summer giving talks about healing from childhood sexual abuse, I will need a bit of extra help. If you would like to chip in—no amount too small—please use the donation button below. In any event, I am very grateful for your prayers, and am praying daily for all who read my writings or hear me speak.