Creative Works

Author: Carol Schaal '91M.A.

Sacrament: Personal Encounters with Memories, Wounds, Dreams, and Unruly Hearts Patrick Hannon, CSC, ’88M.Div. (Ave Maria Press). Drawing on memories of childhood and adolescence, as well as his experiences as a priest, the author here presents stories that bring the meaning of the sacraments — baptism, confession, Eucharist, confirmation, matrimony, holy orders and anointing of the sick — to life. We should, the author says, “look more carefully at this world of ours and see treasures buried in plain sight.”

Bloodletting: Why Education Reform Is Killing America’s Schools, David Ellison ’81 (Stairway Press). No Child Left Behind, vouchers, charter schools, standardized tests, Common Core Standards: The author, a 30-year veteran educator, critiques what he calls the “false fixes” of the U.S. education system. The real fix, he says, requires a revolution that would “transform the education profession completely into one of the most exclusive, well remunerated and prestigious in the nation,” and address “social injustices such as poverty and segregation which hobble both our schools and our nation.”

Conservative Hurricane: How Jeb Bush Remade Florida, Matthew T. Corrigan ’87 (University Press of Florida). In this analysis of the two-term Florida governor’s conservative activism, which led to the broadening authority of the state’s executive branch, the author takes an in-depth look at Bush’s social and economic policies, politics and legacy. He also highlights Bush’s approach to business recruitment, his major education reforms and his stance on gun rights, end-of-life issues and immigration.

Treasure & Tradition: The Ultimate Guide to the Latin Mass, Lisa Bergman ’96 (St. Augustine Academy Press). What started as a booklet the author created to explain the Latin Mass to her children grew to this comprehensive guide, which explores the meaning and history of the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. Photos, diagrams and classic artwork combine with a word-for-word translation of the Mass and pop-up notes to explain what is happening during each stage of the ceremony.

If You Build It, directed by Patrick Creadon ’89 (Long Shot Factory). The third documentary from the director of Wordplay and I.O.U.S.A. follows two designer-activists to a blighted area of rural North Carolina, where they work with high school students on an alternative education project. “A thoughtful examination of the need to keep students engaged with education, and the challenges that arise in attempting anything against the grain,” says Variety. Learn more at

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5 Minutes with the Saints: More Spiritual Nourishment for Busy Teachers, edited by Lou DelFra, CSC, ’92, ’03M.Div. and Ann Primus Berends (Ave Maria Press). Written by members of Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education program, these reflections offer affirmation for educators facing the daily challenge of forming young hearts and mind. Each reflection includes a short excerpt by a saint, including Elizabeth Ann Seton, André Bessette and Ignatius of Loyola, on the spirituality of Catholic education, followed by a prayer.

A Life Short & Loud: And the Long Road Back, Kevin W. Luby ’84J.D. (CreateSpace). On September 12, 2009, 20-year-old Conner Patrick Luby died in a car accident. Here his father explores the aftermath of that tragic accident, from his own shock, anguish and grief to the effect of his son’s death on family and friends. Along with that examination of a tumultuous time, he also presents a look at his son’s life, sharing a father’s joy and pain, and the memories of a life cut short.

The Grace of Yes: Eight Virtues for Generous Living, Lisa M. Hendey ’85 (Ave Maria Press). “I believe that when you and I err on the side of giving our own unique yeses to the call of God, we have the capacity to rock our world,” the author says. Using examples of her own spiritual journey, she outlines how the virtues of belief, generativity, creativity, integrity, humility, vulnerability, saying no and rebirth can lead to more generous living and saying yes to God. Each chapter concludes with questions for personal reflection and a prayer.

A Book of Uncommon Prayer: 100 Celebrations of the Miracle & Muddle of the Ordinary, Brian Doyle ’78 (Sorin Books). The prayers here feature hymns to shoes, nuns, chess, Girl Scouts and possums as well as celebrations of faith and family. “I pray that in the pages that follow,” the author says in his introductory prayer, “I will be able . . . to remind readers that we are handed miracles beyond number, every blessed moment, if only we can train ourselves to open and see and hear and taste and feel and smell and absorb them.”

Iris and the Gipper: The Tragic Love Story of George Gipp and Iris Trippeer, Frank McAdams (Amazon Digital Services). Narrated by Gipper’s former teammate Frank Coughlin, the novel chronicles the last 14 months of Gipp’s short life. Set against the Prohibition era, this work of fiction brings together two young people from diverse backgrounds and features notable characters who affected the early 20th century. The author is a lecturer in the School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California.

The Theology of Cardinal Walter Kasper: Speaking Truth in Love, edited by Kristin M. Colberg ’94, ’09Ph.D., and Robert A. Krieg ’76Ph.D. (Liturgical Press). Praised by Pope Francis for his “profound and serene” theology, Cardinal Kasper has explored such topics as the nature of the church-world relationship and the character of interreligious dialogue. Essayists commenting on the cardinal’s work include John Cavadini, director of Notre Dame’s Institute for Church Life; Elizabeth Groppe ’99Ph.D.; Thomas F. O’Meara, O.P., emeritus Notre Dame professor of theology, and Brian Daley, S.J., Gustavo Gutierrez, O.P., Mary Catherine Hilkert, O.P., and Cyril J. O’Regan, Notre Dame professors of theology.

Remembering Notre Dame: Part III: Gridiron and Glory, Michael D. Ciletti ’64, ’65M.A., ’68Ph.D. (Corby Books). The final book in this Notre Dame “memory” and “place” series features photographs and brief descriptions of various athletic facilities, highlighting places where student athletes animate the life and lore of the University. The book is dedicated to former ND football coach Ara Parseghian.

Perspectives on Dodd-Frank and Finance, edited by Paul H. Schultz (The MIT Press). Passed by Congress in 2010, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act was designed to help prevent the type of catastrophic financial crisis that occurred in September 2008. Here, academics, regulators and practitioners discuss the ways the law might (or might not) work. The editor is a Notre Dame professor of finance.

Of Mice and Miracles: An American Educator’s Story, Frederick J. Day (2DonnBooks). A biography of Richard Martin ’63, who grew from a law-breaking teen to a gifted educator. Martin retired in 2014 from Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington, Virginia, after 50 years as a coach, teacher and administrator. Martin’s classmate, Father Edward A. Malloy, CSC, the president emeritus of Notre Dame, said the book “captures the humanity of a person who genuinely loved the students entrusted to his care.”

Sauces: A Global History, Maryann Tebben ’92 (Reaktion Books). An examination of the evolution of food technology through the centuries, from the fermented sauces in 5th century China to present-day sauces developed through molecular gastronomy. The author, an associate professor of French at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Great Barrington, Massachusetts, discusses the history of American ketchup and Tabasco sauce, and the disputes over the Indian roots of British “Worcestershire” sauce.

The Cana Rosary: A Couple’s Prayer, Christopher A. Ebberwein ’93 (CreateSpace). How does each mystery of the rosary illuminate aspects of marriage and family life? These meditations for engaged and married couples foster an encounter with Jesus, Mary and the disciples as models for the couple to live their lives together. The prayer book is designed to encourage couples to consider virtuous responses to all of life’s moments together.

Carol Schaal is managing editor of this magazine.