Birth announcement: Cl3m3nt Mich@el!

A longtime reader has let me know that she’s had her second son, and given him the so-handsome name … Cl3m3nt Mich@el! (Alt characters used at the mama’s request, for privacy.)

She writes,

You did a private consultation for me almost 2 years ago, long before I was pregnant with my newest little one. I wanted to let you know that #2 has arrived and we’ve named him Cl3m3nt Mich@el! 

Cl3m3nt was a name I read to my husband as I browsed your blog. We both liked it and started thinking of it as a possible middle name, but within a day or two it became *his name*!

Cl3m3nt joins big brother B3n3dict K0lb3. Both their names have a few features we love:
1) big time protectors (St. B3n3dict and St. Mich@el the Archangel),
2) Marian ties (Kolb3 and Cl3m3nt from the Hail, Holy Queen prayer), and
3) recent saints — St. Maximilian Kolb3 and Bl. Miguel Pro!

Thank you for your consultation and your super helpful blog!

These parents have chosen such amazing names for their boys, and for such great reasons! Congratulations to the whole family, and happy birthday Baby Cl3m3nt!!


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!

Birth announcement: Cecily Germaine!

I posted a birth announcement for Elizabeth’s little guy a few years ago, and I’m delighted to share that she’s had another baby — a little girl given the gorgeous name … Cecily Germaine!

Elizabeth writes,

We welcomed our third born baby, a little girl, on August 6th: Cecily Germaine. Baby sister to Miryam Isabel and Luke David. She is our rainbow baby after miscarrying siblings in heaven Bobby and Zelie in 2018.

I first heard of the name Cecily from the play The Importance of Being Earnest in high school. She was my favorite character and it’s still my favorite play. Years later when brainstorming baby names, I found a website listing a huge number of saints alphabetically, and I was writing down any of them that I liked, to bring up later to my husband. Cecily was on the list. Honestly I don’t know anything about St Cecily, but that was enough to get the name on my list of top 20. (Of course it’s also a variation of Cecilia, whom we all know as a saint. I prefer the shorter, “lighter” Cecily, especially with the middle name we had on hold for a second girl for a few years already.) Also, I met a girl my age with the name (spelled Cecilie—I considered that spelling for my daughter, but after choosing a “weird” spelling for our oldest, I decided I wanted the least confusing spelling for this one). Cecilie was a lovely person, and I’m pretty sure she works for the United Nations now, so the name fits cute little girl *and* professional adult woman in my book. Side note, though: my husband is sure all our children will be priests and religious. Sister Cecily has a nice ring, too. (:

St Germaine Cousin is my husband’s confirmation saint. He wanted Germaine to be Miryam’s middle name, but I thought it was too “heavy” a combo for a tiny baby girl, so we shelved Germaine for the second girl’s middle name, if we were to have one. And here we are!

What an amazing name!! I love all the layers of meaning and reasons for choosing both Cecily and Germaine, and what a stunning combo that make together!!

Congratulations to Elizabeth and her husband and big sibs Miryam and Luke, and happy birthday Baby Cecily!! (As a special treat, for those of you who love birth stories like I do, Elizabeth has shared a link to Cecily’s birth story! ❤ )

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Cecily Germaine


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!

Book reviews, radio appearance, naming aborted babies

Happy Friday! I never appreciate Fridays as much as I do when school is in session, whew!

My most recent column at CatholicMom is a review of the first two books in the Sister Mary Baruch series by Fr. Jacob Restrick, OP. I loved them! And beyond the story itself — the NAMES!! I mean, the main character is given the religious name Sr. Mary Baruch of the Advent Heart, which has loads of meaning for that character. Loooooove.

Speaking of book reviews, if any of you who have read my book are able to leave a review on Amazon, I would be most grateful! (Thank you to those who have left reviews already! I’m so grateful for each one!)

I was on Jon Leonetti’s morning radio show a couple weeks ago, and wanted to share the link for anyone who didn’t listen in: go to Jon’s show’s page on the Iowa Catholic Radio site, then scroll through his episodes to the September 17 episode — my bit starts at the 45:54 minute mark. I’d love to know what you think!

Finally, several years ago, back when the horrifying undercover Planned Parenthood videos were being released, I wrote about giving names to aborted babies, which included a discussion of why this might be an important to thing to do, and included a link to the 50 Million Names web site, “a grassroots campaign to collect names for the now-more-than 50,000,000 children aborted in our country.” My post also linked to a Students for Life post in which the name Emmett was originally suggested as the name by which the baby boy in one of the Planned Parenthood videos from the Center for Medical Progress could be known (instead of “Eleven Six,” which is how he had been being referred, for his age at the time of the abortion): “This baby deserves a name, deserves dignity that is rightly afforded him as a member of the human race.” The name Emmett was then expanded to include a second baby portrayed in another of the videos: “Call them Emmett, for they may very well be the catalysts to end abortion in our nation, just like Emmett Till.” I loved this idea — I loved having something concrete and dignity-affirming to do for all the babies whose lives were and continue to be taken from them.

There’s a new effort to do the same thing for the babies whose bodies were recently found at the home of abortionist George Klopfer, spearheaded by Priests for Life: Name the Aborted Babies Found in Illinois. One of you readers sent the link to me, thinking, rightly, that it would be a good one to share here on the blog, and normally I’d do so without reservation. Certainly, the intention is such a good one! But I more recently read that an equally ardent pro-lifer as myself thinks doing so is abhorrent, for reasons that I never considered. In a post entitled, “Fr. Pavone cashes in on dead babies again,” one of my favorite bloggers/authors, Simcha Fisher, writes:

Naming is an act either of authority, or of ownership — the act of a parent, or of an owner. You don’t get to name a baby unless you’re the parent; and you don’t get to name anything else unless it’s something that can be owned. So what does this mean, for strangers to name unborn babies they’ve never met, who do have parents? Who gave them that right?

While I don’t always agree with Simcha’s conclusions in the many important things she writes about, I often find her position helpful as I seek to clarify my own. I’ve been thinking about her post since I read it, and I’m still not sure where I land — I know she doesn’t care for Fr. Pavone (an understatement, from other things I’ve read by her about him), and the fact that he’s been rebuked by his bishop in the past for actions “not consistent with the beliefs of the Catholic Church” is so important to know. That said, I’d be interested to know if Simcha’s belief about naming aborted babies would be the same if Fr. Pavone wasn’t involved? Is it possible her dislike of him is clouding her judgment regarding this particular issue? Maybe not! I’m just not sure what I think yet. What say you?

And on that note (oh dear!), I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!

Birth announcement: Helena Mary!

I posted a consultation for Kara three years ago, and the resulting birth announcement for her baby boy, and I’m thrilled to share that she’s had another baby — the gorgeously named Helena Mary!

Kara writes,

Hi! You did a consultation for us 3 years ago and we ended up with Damien Edmund. We were always going to name a second daughter Helena and I had a baby girl on Saturday. We can’t believe God gave us our Helena Mary on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross! Isn’t that perfect?!

Perfect indeed!! For those who aren’t familiar, St. Helena is credited with finding the True Cross in the fourth century, and the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross celebrates that discovery! Amazing!

Congratulations to Kara and her husband and big siblings Rosamond, Matthias, Simeon, and Damien, and happy birthday Baby Helena!!

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Helena Mary


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!

Birth announcement: Solan Peter and Magdalen Anne!

One of you wonderful readers, Liz, let me know that she recently gave birth to twins (!) and said it was okay to share their names with all of you! She had a boy and a girl and named them the incredible names … Solan Peter “Solly” and Magdalen Anne “Maggie”!

Liz writes,

I’ve never done a consultation with you, but I love your blog and it’s where I’ve always gone for name inspiration for our babies. We just welcomed our twins and I wanted to share their names with you! Naming twins wasn’t easy and I didn’t find many good resources for Catholic twin names, especially boy/girl twins. Plus, my husband is not very into the name game. He flat out told me this time around that he likes what I choose anyway 😂. So I’m hoping I can help other mamas.

My confirmation saint is Mary Magdalene and I’ve been in love with the name Magdalen “Maggie” for a long time. But, with our first two babies being boys I’ve had little opportunity to use it. So I was pretty set on that and started there. But finding boy names to go with it proved a little challenging.

My rules were either starting with an M or similarly ending with an N. Had to be a saint name and if not possible very Catholic meaning. Also, I’m a stickler for a full name with a good nickname. I wanted our twins’ names to make sense together, but didn’t want them to be too matchy.

For a while we were seriously considering Maximilian (one of my favorite saints!), but I just couldn’t get over Max feeling like a dog name. So, as often happens we wound up back at one of the first names I liked, Solan (for Blessed Solanus Casey).

Big brothers’ names are:

Bennett James “Ben” (Saint Benedict and James is daddy’s name)
Leander Charles “Leo” (Saint Leander of Seville and Charles is after my father)

Twins’ names are:

Solan Peter “Solly” and
Magdalen Anne “Maggie”

Middle names are after my husband’s father and my husband’s grandmothers both had the middle name Ann. We originally were going to do Joy after the grandmother who had lost twins of her own many years ago, but wanted to honor the other grandmother when we realized the babies would be born [on] the anniversary of her passing. It wasn’t until then we realized both grandmothers’ middle names were Ann, so it was perfect!

Hope you enjoyed our naming story (I shortened it a little 😂)! Thank you for doing your blog, it is a huge help and blessing! Plus, I always love a good name story … PS Our twins were delivered early due to our son having growth concerns and everyone was pretty certain he would need NICU time because he was expected to be less than 4 lbs. But we prayed hard up until the day they were delivered at 36 weeks and he was born at 4 lbs 2 oz and screaming loud! His sister was 5 lbs 7 oz. Neither baby has needed any NICU time and we are headed home after a normal hospital stay. Blessed Solanus Casey was praying for us!

Isn’t this a wonderful story??!! I LOVE the names Liz and her hubby gave their twins, AND the names of their older boys as well! And I love that Bl. Solanus is a part of their story!!

Thank you so much to Liz for sharing all this! Congratulations to the whole family, and happy birthday Solly and Maggie!!

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Solan Peter “Solly” and Magdalen Anne “Maggie”

Birth announcement: Genevieve Immaculee Grace!

Dear Genie from Barefoot Abbey (web site and Instagram) is a longtime reader for whom I posted two consultations for two different babies over the last few years (here and here), and a birth announcement for her first baby girl after five boys three years ago. I’m delighted to announce that she’s had her second baby girl — a sweet little lady named … Genevieve Immaculee Grace!

Genie writes,

Our little Sweet Pea, surprise baby girl was born on March 23rd … accidentally unassisted at home after a wild quick labor. I though it was my old back injury flaring up early in the morning but a couple hours later when I got up to take a shower it was baby time instead. I yelled for my husband and he got to the bathroom just in time to catch her. She was a planned homebirth but our third accidentally unassisted birth. 🤷‍♀️ (1 in the hospital & 2 at home) My husband and I are good catchers so at least we’ve got that going for us. 😂 “

(Ohmygoodness!!)

We named her Genevieve Immaculee Grace after the saints, with Immaculee for Our Lady of Fatima and Grace for the Blessed Mother as Mediatrix of all Graces. Her older sister’s patroness is Our Lady of Lourdes with Elizabeth as her second Marian name.

Even though my legal name is not Genevieve, my husband really liked it because of its similarity to mine. And it’s hard to go wrong with the saint who protected Paris from Attila the Hun by organizing a prayer and fasting campaign. St. Grace of Saragossa was also a providential patroness for her intercession with our rocky nursing journey through lip ties and poor latches. St. Grace was a 4th century saint that suffer a similar fate as St. Agatha — martyrdom by mastectomy. 😬

All the Bairns are smitten with her and have taken to calling her Evie Grace and Gigi. My favorite nickname for her though is Moon Pie, because she has the sweetest, little round moon face.”

Genevieve Immaculee Grace is such a stunning name! I love all the layers of meaning — I love how it connects her to her mother (Genie) and her Mother (Mary) and some great saints as well!

Congratulations to Genie and her husband big sibs Malachi, Noah, Liam, Aelred (with Jesus), Henry, Moira, and George, and happy birthday Baby Genevieve!!

Genevieve Immaculee Grace with her big brothers and sister ❤


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!

Catch me on the radio tomorrow morning!

You might remember that I was on the radio show Jon Leonetti in the Morning on Iowa Catholic Radio (1150am, 88.5fm and 94.5fm) last year, and I’ll be on with him again tomorrow morning! Tune in at 7:45am central time (8:45am eastern) to hear us chatting about the baby naming process! Even if you’re not in Iowa, you can tune in online — I hope some of you can listen and let me know how I did! (And keep the ideas for Kortnee’s baby girl coming!)


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!