Motherhood is tough. It can be thankless. Intimidating. Exhausting. Finding the joy in this unique vocation of raising young Christians, of meeting their physical and mental and spiritual needs, sometimes feels impossible.
That struggle isn’t new — it’s been faced by every generation of mothers since the dawn of time. But mothers of this generation face it in a unique way, said Danielle Bean, author, speaker, podcaster and mother of eight.
“We are challenged in unprecedented ways by a culture that sends us mixed messages,” said Bean, whose focus is ministry to Catholic women. “The world tells us we can ‘have it all’ but inside of trying to do all the things, so many of us wind up feeling exhausted, depleted and pulled in too many directions.”
That’s why Bean is teaming up with Cardinal Studios to produce The Catholic Moms Summit, a free virtual event with more than 80 presentations running from Nov. 13 to 15. Bean, who is also the brand manager of CatholicMom.com, is hosting the event and is also one of its presenters, appearing alongside nationally known names like Kimberly Hahn, Lisa Hendey, Sarah Swafford and Crystalina Evert.
The goal of the summit is to communicate the truth of Catholic motherhood in all its beautiful, difficult and messy reality, while providing fellowship and support for moms who are increasingly isolated from their social networks due to the pandemic.
“We need each other,” said Bean. “We moms need the kind of connection, support, encouragement and affirmation that we can only get from one another. In these times, it can be hard to stay connected with others in meaningful ways. Many of us no longer have our women’s groups or Bible Studies or other regular connections with other women. We need to be intentional about seeking out those connections, especially ones that will support us in our faith lives.”
Bean’s presentation will be entitled “What Happy Moms Know.” It will be an honest and vulnerable sharing of her own experience, with practical tips for “working toward being the happy moms God wants us to be.”
“If you’re struggling inside of your motherhood, there is nothing wrong with you,” she said. “You’re human, and the kinds of challenges we face in motherhood are some of the hardest and yet the most meaningful work we will ever do. We know that in our hearts. There are some ways that we sometimes make life harder for ourselves, though, and that’s what I am going to be talking about. Small things, attitudes, and habits that can get in the way of the joy God means for us to find in our motherhood.”
Other presenters will explore everything from marriage and single motherhood to miscarriage, Catholic domestic culture, prayer, mental health, transitions in motherhood, Marian devotion, foster parenthood, feminism, special needs parenting and much more.
Access to the 80 presentations is free beginning on Nov. 13 and closing at midnight, Nov. 15, but there is also an All-Access Pass available for $49.99 that includes lifetime on-demand access to all presentations as well as 14 live interactive main events each day during the summit. It also offers audio mp3 downloads of more than 60 presentations and access to “Embrace Joy: The 21-Day Guided Course on Balancing Your Life as a Mother.”
Bean describes the summit as “a respite — a moment just for you — where you can connect and share with other moms like you, where you can laugh and cry together about the kinds of things we all struggle through — and be reminded of the importance, the dignity and the real gift that your motherhood is to your family, to the Church, and to the world at large.”
“We are made for life-giving love,” she said. “ And it’s inside of our vocation to motherhood, the living out of that gift, that we find real meaning and purpose in our lives.”
For more information, visit https://www.cardinalstudios.org/moms-summit-home.