I'm Lisa Kirk, a wife, mama, writer, and founder. Since 2010, Something Pretty has been home to my favorite memories, reflections, and inspirations. Thanks so much for reading!

Our Brothers and Sisters the Saints + A Giveaway!


I’m six months into my goal of paying attention to the liturgical calendar and doing my best to let it inform and inspire my daily life. While I sometimes forget to plan ahead or even acknowledge some feast days at all, I can say that so far, this experiment has transformed my faith in the richest way. One reason for that? I’ve loved being introduced to Saints I had never heard of and diving more deeply into the lives and faiths of ones I already love.

I recently read a beautifully written memoir called My Sisters the Saints, in which the author shares the ways the lives and writings of six Saints “speak to her deepest longings, guide her through her most wrenching decisions, and lead her to rethink nearly everything she thought she knew about what it means to be a liberated woman.” Her story resonated with me so deeply because this year especially, what I’ve learned from the Saints has drawn me closer to Jesus than I have ever been. And that’s exactly what is supposed to happen–every encounter with the beautiful lives of some of the holiest men and women who have ever walked this earth point only and always to Christ. Every day, I now walk through my own life and work calling to mind what I’ve learned from the examples of St. Zelie, who shared in my experience as a mother and business owner, St. Gemma, who never let her thoughts stray far from Jesus’ sorrowful Passion, St. Therese, who continually made small sacrifices with the greatest love, and so many more.

After reading this book, I was curious to ask a few of my friends about the Saints they have been the most influenced by. I’m so honored to share the answers of ten incredible women (plus my own answer) today! I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did…and whether you already have a best Saint friend or you’re curious to learn more about someone, be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post for a giveaway :)

stella and tide custom saint necklace

“St. Therese of Lisieux has had a major impact on my life–she came at just the right time! I knew that in my lifetime, I most likely wouldn’t have a huge impact, but like St. Therese, I could do small things with great love. She has shown me that it’s okay to go through life performing daily activities with love and obedience, no matter how small or insignificant they may seem. I’ve found several articles and her writings very helpful in learning more about her, as well as the book My Sisters the Saints.”
– Carrie Khodanian, founder and designer of Stella & Tide

“St. Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa) has been so influential in my life that I named my daughter after her. Even though she moved across the world to serve as a missionary, she still believed that changing the world begins at home with the people closest to us. She was brave enough to talk about controversial issues on the world’s stage and humble enough to care for the poorest of the poor. Those who knew her say that you’d be just as likely to find her cleaning a toilet as you would leading a group of women or caring for the sick and dying. A great resource to learn more about her is Come Be My Light, a collection of her letters. Even though she suffered through intense periods of spiritual desolation, she still lived out a calling to love in a radical, beautiful way.”
– Claire Swinarski, founder and host of The Catholic Feminist Podcast

“St. Gemma Galgani is literally a ‘true gem of the Sacred Heart of Jesus,’ and inspires me deeply. As a somewhat modern-day saint, she was incredibly striking (for whatever reason, I have always been curious about saints who were physically beautiful), and her intense devotion to the Passion of Our Lord is nothing short of all-consuming. Gemma was only 21 years-old when she received the grace and suffering of the Stigmata, and her life was truly a martyrdom of love. Her story is gripping and almost fantastical, from regularly conversing with her Guardian Angel to fighting face to face with the Adversary. St. Gemma is not only captivating, she issues a challenge: ‘If you really want to love Jesus, first learn to suffer because suffering teaches you to love,’ and oh, how dearly I need this reminder daily. I was blessed with the opportunity to pray before her tomb on our honeymoon, and I specifically asked her to intercede for our future children…and lo and behold, our first born is named ‘Gemma.’ We have this basic four-volume collection of her life, but I honestly recommend this website for everything and anything you want to know about St. Gemma.”
– Janet Easter, blogger at Ever Easter and cofounder of Verily

“A saint I particularly love is Saint Theodore Guerin. I went to a brand new high school founded under her patronage (my class was the first freshman class!) so I learned a lot about her during very formative years in my faith. She was sent from France to the wild woods of Indiana where she formed an order (the Sisters of Providence) and several schools. She left everything she knew behind and was so courageous to go straight into the unknown, trusting that God would lead and provide. One of my favorite quotes is attributed to her: ‘Place yourself gently into the hands of Providence.’ You can learn more about her here.”
– Valerie Keinsley, blogger at Valerie Keinsley

“I typically call upon Our Lady and the mothers of my favorite saints like St. Jean Vianney, St. Gemma, and St. John Bosco for guidance to help me in my vocation raising little ones for heaven—these women may not be officially canonized, however, I truly believe that the hidden tasks of washing, mending, cooking, and instructing their children about Jesus have made them saints. Of all these saintly mothers living in obscurity for heaven, St. Zelie Martin (the mother of the Little Flower, St. Therese) acts as my patron for my particular season of life. I resonate deeply with her desire for raising children for God alone and admire her example as a working mother living for heaven. St. Therese of Lisieux is famous for her ‘little way,’ but I think she first learned of this spiritual philosophy through the example set by her holy mother. St. Zelie completely abandoned her vocation to the divine will, always trusting God with the details of her day, joyfully accepting suffering, and praying fervently that her children would love Jesus and live only for Him. I recommend her biography written by her daughter, Celine, called The Mother of the Little Flower as a resource to learn more about her life.”
– Emily Fossier, blogger at Little Fossi Way

“Just as new friendships here on earth can become some of the dearest in life, so too with our heavenly friends. This past year, I came across Saint Giuseppe Moscati (1880-1927), an Italian doctor and miracle worker. Learning more about his story–especially his love for discovering truth within the medical field and his desire to uphold the dignity of the human person–has greatly inspired me. He gave his whole being to help serve the sick, lonely, and poor. I try to live out his words that so closely echo the Gospel message: ‘Charity will transform the world.’ To learn more about Saint Moscati, I recommend the movie St. Giuseppe Moscati: Doctor of the Poor. There is also a book by Antonio Tripodoro, S.J., that shares the same title as the movie, that is wonderful!”
– Claire Couche, blogger at Finding Philothea

“My husband, Stephen, and I always hoped to have a patron saint for our family, but neither of us held a particular devotion to any one, so we prayed about it and remained open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. In the past few years, we have been sent holy water, statues, candles, and cards from the shrine of Our Lady of La Leche in St. Augustine, Florida. Many ask for her intercession in conception, healthy pregnancy, and motherhood, and since we struggle with infertility, we felt she would be the perfect patron for our family–it felt like she was pursuing us! There is a beautiful prayer on the back of her holy card that Stephen and I say together in prayer, and I’d love to share it with you:

Lovely Lady of La Leche, most loving mother of the Child Jesus, and my mother, listen to my humble prayer. Your motherly heart knows my every wish, my every need. To you only, His spotless Virgin Mother, has your Divine Son given to understand the sentiments which fill my soul. Yours was the sacred privilege of being the Mother of the Savior. Intercede with him now, my loving Mother, that, in accordance with His will, I may become the mother of other children of our heavenly Father. This I ask, O Lady of La Leche, in the Name of your Divine Son, My Lord and Redeemer. Amen.
– Katie Wadlow, blogger at Hey Katie

“I was on the brink of young adulthood and a massive conversion of heart when I first saw a picture of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati. There was a massive banner with his photo and the words ‘Verso l’alto!’ hanging in the childhood home of my then-friend-now-husband. My first thought was that he was the first handsome (almost) saint I’d ever seen; but once I discovered the details of his life, I was even more attracted to his virtue. Frassati showed me, at a tender age, that holiness, sainthood, fun, and frankly, normalcy, were not incompatible. As someone who loved spending time with his friends, working toward his education, going on outdoor adventures, and playing harmless pranks, Giorgio was and continues to be a saint I can relate to in my daily joys and sufferings. He exemplifies living every precious moment we have on earth–from heart-wrenching loss to purest elation—for the greater glory of God. You can learn more about him on this website or by reading A Man of the Beatitudes (most approachable biography and considered the standard resource) or My Brother Pier Giorgio: His Last Days (my fave and it’s short).”
– Olivia Spears, blog manager at Blessed Is She

“Recently, I spent two weeks in Assisi, Italy. During that time, I felt drawn to learn more about St. Clare, who was from there. I picked up a book about her and read it from front to back quickly. I was so taken by her continuous ‘yes’ to give everything to our Lord, the way that she generously loved and cared for her sisters, and her complete love and trust in the Eucharist. In the book, she was quoted saying, ‘Happy, indeed, is she to whom it is given to share in this sacred banquet so that she might cling with all her heart to Him…whose kindness fulfills, whose affection excites, whose contemplation refreshes, whose delight replenishes, whose remembrance delightfully shines.'”
– Emily Runyan, calligrapher at Emily Rachelle

So much of who I am as a person, I owe to my beloved friend, Saint John Paul II. My Polish heritage gave me an instant connection with him as a child when he was still alive, but ever since I began to truly get to know him starting in college, he has taught me the true meaning of courage. Of hope. Of authentic femininity. Of Christian marriage. Of true adventure. Of the value of being a mother. Of the value of being an artist. Of boldly walking in the truth, no matter how counter-cultural it may be. And most of all, of the satisfaction and love and joy that can only be found in Christ Jesus. Every day, I try to remember his encouragement as I strive to love God, love my family, love my community, and love my enemies: “There is no place for selfishness and no place for fear! Do not be afraid, then, when love makes demands. Do not be afraid when love requires sacrifice.” To learn about him, I recommend his official biography, Witness to Hope, or the shorter, easier-to-read Saint John Paul the Great: His Five Loves.
– Lisa (yours truly :))

As you may have spotted on Instagram, I’ve been living in the prettiest gold necklaces from Stella & Tide lately. I was so excited when Carrie not only agreed to share her love for St. Therese in this post, but also to give one of y’all a gorgeous gold custom saint medal necklace. I’m wearing one of Saint Therese in the top photo of this post and LOVE how sweet and dainty the reminder of her is. Stella & Tide offers these necklaces in over 250 Saints and three lengths to choose from. Enter below for your chance to win one!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be randomly selected and emailed one week from today on June 28. The giveaway is open to US residents ages 18 and older.

Bonus: use the code SOMETHINGPRETTY10 to receive 10% off of your Stella & Tide order anytime. I also have the Celeste necklace and Stardust necklace, and think I need to add the Totus Tuus cuff bracelet to my collection soon :)

Additional reading about Saints:
My Sisters the Saints
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on devotion to the Saints
Do Catholics Worship Saints?
Bishop Barron on why to pray to the Saints
Five Ways to Find Daily Adventure with the Saints






  1. Kristina says:

    Lisa, you were right, I very much enjoyed reading this post :-) And I already wrote down the titles of two books that were mentioned in the post to put on my summer reading list. Super excited to read My Sisters the Saints and to learn more about Edith Stein which I have heard about in school but never looked deeper into her life.

  2. Jillian Hershberger says:

    This is a beautiful blog and I’m so happy to have come across it through Stella & Tide’s Instagram account. Keep up your wonderful work <3

    I’m a newly converted Catholic so I still have so much to learn in regarding the Saints. However, I would LOVE to learn more about St. Therese of Lisieux. All of my fellow Catholic sisters in Christ seem to adore her and I’ve yet to delve into her history and legacy. Her “little ways” have seemed to influence many of my peers as well. :)

    God bless you on this journey!

  3. Shannon says:

    It seems like some of my faves are shared by many! St. Therese of Lisieux is my girl, and I’m also very fond of St. Gemma. St. Angela Merici is my confirmation saint and I chose her in my youth for her pretty name but I’ve been getting to know and love here recently!

  4. Viktorija says:

    Thanks for this post! I’ve been thinking a lot about patron saints lately—I don’t have a particular saint that’s “mine.” Your post has re-inspired me to keep looking, pray about, and check out some of these books. :)

  5. Megan says:

    Have you read My Life With the Saints? It’s similar to My Sisters The Saints and I think you would enjoy it. It totally changed my perspective on Saints the first time I read it, and I loved reading today’s post!

    I’m getting married soon, and if my fiancé and I have a household saint it undoubtably St. Ignatius.

  6. Leah says:

    I’ve recently be loving learning about (and developing a friend crush on) all Pier Georgio Frassati!

  7. Mary J. says:

    That was such a beautiful post! Thank you so much to everyone who contributed! I’ve always had such a special devotion to St. Teresa of Calcutta! I even remember where I was when I heard she had died (I was in first grade). She was just such a wonderful example of unconditional love to everyone she encountered! “Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.”

  8. Abby Kyle says:

    I love St. Gianna Molla. She is a constant exhortation to me about the joy in the difficulty of marriage. She was so prayerful and realistic as a mother and wife!

    I also love Mary, Star of the New Evangelization. She has been pursuing me for years, and she has been a constant companion and mother to me.

  9. Madison Gentry says:

    What a beautiful and insightful blog post! Reading this was a great start to my morning. Your reasoning behind your love for each saint truly inspired me! My favorite saint is Saint Jude, the patron saint of desperate causes. I pray to Saint Jude through praying novenas during periods in my life where I feel that things will never get better, and it always does the trick. How wonderful it is to have so many amazing saints that are praying for all of us every day!

  10. Darby Ratcliff says:

    Lisa, thank you so much for sharing this. I have never really thought about how much a Saint could impact my life until now. I am eager to learn more about different Saints. I use the Val Marie Paper prayer journal, and I think that I will add a Saint section for each month.

  11. Kelley says:

    As a new Catholic (1.5 years since my Confirmation!), I am still learning about the saints. I chose St. Elizabeth Anne Seton as my Confirmation saint and have enjoyed learning about her. A fellow convert from an Anglican tradition, her passion for her children and for education resonated with me. Also, my family traces its roots back to colonial times (I’m a member of DAR), so it has been fascinating to learn about about early American Catholic life (St. Elizabeth Anne Seton is the earliest American-born saint).

  12. Alyssa says:

    Such a lovely post! My husband and I have such devotion to St. JPII and St. Gemma, so much that we’re naming our first babe either Gemma or John Paul (finding out gender soon)! It’s amazing how the saints can have an incredible effect on us and lead us to Christ.

  13. Brooke Foley says:

    This is such a great post!

  14. Gina says:

    It’s really awesome that you chose not only your favorite saint to write about but that you also had others join you. I’m starting to have a newfound appreciation for learning about the lives of the saints and it really helps the journey to sainthood when you can see example set right before your own eyes

  15. Courtney says:

    Thank you for writing this post! I do not have a specific patron saint at the moment, but it is a work in progress as I read more about them. I am currently reading My Sisters the Saints and it has been very fruitful!

  16. Alice says:

    What a beautiful post! I cannot wait to dive into the book. I too have a deep devotion towards JPII and his Totus Tuus program in our Diocese of Wichita KS is the reason my husband and I met.

  17. Melissa says:

    Saint Margaret of Scotland. She was my confirmation saint when I converted to Catholicism in college. She was queen and did so much for the people of Scotland, especially the poor. She also lived out my greatest fear as a military spouse- her hiasband and son were both killed in battle at the same time. Instead of becoming angry at God, she thanked him for letting her experience such suffering.

    I really like the book “The Catholic Catalogue”. It has simple ideas on how to celebrate saints and follow the litigurgical year in your family. It’s a great reference book. And the cover is cute and pretty too. :)

  18. Chelsea says:

    While I’m not Catholic, I’ve always admired Saint Teresa of Calcutta. In fact, my senior quotation in my high school yearbook was her famous words about doing small things with great love, which deeply resonates with me. My (future!) sister-in-law is Catholic, and your blog is such a great resource for me to see how a modern Catholic woman like you and her can celebrate her faith; I plan on gifting her some Stella & Tide jewelry (and “My Sisters the Saints”), whether or not I win the giveaway! :)

  19. Liz Linhares says:

    This book is next on my reading list!! I can’t wait to dive in and learn more about these saints. xo

  20. Alyce Shields says:

    I need to read this book ASAP. I love hearing about everyone’s devotions and saint friends. St. Therese has been a long time influence in my life. She always sends me roses when I need them most.

  21. Jenni says:

    We are in our 10th year of trying to expand our family beyond just me and my husband. We have experienced 5 losses and each one has been life-changing (in good ways and bad obviously). With our most recent one, I took great comfort in the writings of St Zelie and chose to honor her in the naming of our sweet babe (I have found that giving names to our losses/babes helps with the grieving process and honors the precious gift we had for however short a time). I would love the necklace as a reminder that “And if not, He is still good.”

  22. Margo says:

    Wonderful article. This book was on my list to read and I think I forgot about it. I love Mary Magdalene. Just like her, I want to desire to never leave Jesus’ side.

  23. Amy Z says:

    Great post. I have been looking more into the saints lately and have been thinking of ways to pay more attention to the liturgical calendar as well. Please share how you are doing that too.

  24. Shannon says:

    I really enjoyed reading your post! Since I converted to catholicism as an adult, I’ve found it hard to build a connection with any Saints, but I see how others grow in faith so much by learning about their lives. That’s what I want! I’m definitely going to read My Sisters the Saints.

  25. Patricia says:

    I have so many faves it’s hard to limit my list. But I’ll just go with the two we named our son’s after. St. Padre Pio and St. Paschal Baylon.

  26. Em says:

    Such a fascinating post! Love hearing from all of these different ladies!

  27. Meghan says:

    This is such a lovely post. Now I want to read this book!!

  28. Dana says:

    So interesting! This was a special read!

  29. Tegan Valentine says:

    With the Bar coming up I’ve ben turning to St Thomas More!

  30. Eileen says:

    Thank you so much for this beautiful reflection! I love thinking of our brothers and sisters the saints as friends in heaven that can help us in our journey on earth. I especially want to introduce my children to these ‘celestial friends’ so each of my daughters has a particular patron.

    Our eldest daughter’s is Mary, Star of the Sea so that Our Lady may always be her guide through both calm and stormy seas. And our new daughter’s patron is St. Peter, so that Christ may be her one foundation and she may likewise be a sturdy rock for others.

    I so enjoy learning about saints with whom I’m unfamiliar as well as everyone’s unique devotion…thank you!

  31. Madelyn says:

    So so wonderful! Happy to have found a new blog to follow!

  32. Morgan says:

    My Sisters the Saints came into my life when I most needed it. I am so thankful that the book taught me to see my suffering as something beautiful and that there is such a beautiful communion of saints in heaven ready to intercede and help me!

  33. Momilani says:

    LOVE this post!! SO encouraging to be reminded of Saints I’ve turned to in the past but may or may not have “forgotten” about for the time being… will need to reinvest my time in them :) especially Therese and JPII. Thank you so much for sharing!

  34. Giuliana says:

    I have a great saints community that I prayed a lot to, but one that helped me the most is Alberto Hurtado, a Chilean Saint that always encouraged evangelizing, he encouraged people to be a “fire that lit other fires”, to share the happiness of the gospel. He was a lawyer and always helped me to go through exams when I was in college and he also helped me see Christ in the long hours of study. All in all he did a great labor for church and we have become great friends!
    Congratulations on your blog! I enjoyed reading it!

  35. Madeline Jarosik says:

    Ahh this article really hit me. Ever sense getting back from Rome this spring I have found a undying love for the saints. I have been investing free time on the FORMED app and watching movie upon movie about the saints lives. As a young adult I feel like I use to think that I could never relate to someone so holy and committed to the Lord. It was so intimidating and I really didn’t allow my heart to receiving that kind of love. But to see that they went through the same struggles we do pushes me to strive towards sainthood. I relate a lot towards Saint Therese of Lisieux and Saint Theresa of Calcutta. After a mission trip to Haiti they have really protected my little heart with their missions to show small acts of love. But to also bring younger women to holiness and to not be scared to commit their hearts to the Lord. Thank you for this beautiful article!

  36. Lauren says:

    Definitely need to read that book. What a beautiful blog post, and so inspiring!

  37. Elizabeth K says:

    Thank you for this!! I’ve never thought about paying attention to the liturgical calendar but I definitely want to try that know to enriche my faith!

  38. Megan says:

    What beautiful stories everyone has shared! So excited to dig deeper and learn more about some of these heavenly friends I don’t know about.
    I always return again and again to Saint Joseph. As a special protector of women I go to him when I feel any kind of anxiety or just need help!

  39. Kate Costello says:

    What a powerhouse of saints…and if wmazing women! So encouraging to see such a beautiful group of women all striving for holiness.

  40. Caroline Winn says:

    I love hearing about everyone’s saint! My Sisters the Saints is on my reading list.

  41. Jennifer Bernick says:

    I’d love to learn more about St. Gemma!

  42. Missy Litton says:

    Love this!

  43. Kelly D says:

    Saint Therese is my favorite.

  44. Kathryn says:

    I like St. Joan of Arc! She fought a literal war for heaven, true, which is awesome, but I admire her even more for the description of her in Mark Twain (I believe it’s Mark Twain’s) book — he writes that when offered a reward by the King for victory, she simply wanted the taxes removed from her hometown and stated that she would’ve rather spent her days “spinning wool” on her family farm, with her mother, than be at war. Several times Twain describes her “two sides” – a “tension” – in her, warden homesick little girl and the natural born, grace-endowed military leader she became. I really admire this tension because as a young professional woman who wants to do something great for God I often vassilate between homesick little girl and “on the charge” toward my goals. It makes me realize it’s okay to struggle and that God gave Joan the grace to overcome her struggles even though she too was a homesick little girl at times — and if He gave her the grace, He’ll give me the grace, too!

  45. […] love anymore. Stella & Tide sent me a few necklaces (one of which we’re giving away here!) a few weeks ago and I have been wearing them literally every […]

  46. Sarah Borgmeier says:

    Great Post! The saints are such amazing examples of the Catholic faith!

  47. Maureen says:

    Such a great book! Your review was spot on!

  48. I love this post! I didn’t have a huge relationship with the saints at all until I read the book My Sisters the Saints when I was working in Charlotte, NC as a Totus Tuus missionary. It inspired me so much to learn more about our sisters in Christ who are up in Heaven battling for us!!! I give this book out all the time now for birthdays, Christmas…you name it

  49. Justine Rauch says:

    This is such a beautiful reminder to have a Christ-centered home, especially with children. I love all of their medals!! ????????

  50. Ashley says:

    St.Gianna Molla is my patron saint!

  51. Jane says:

    St. Gianna is my favorite – actually met her daughter, Gianna Emanuela Molla!

  52. Julie says:

    I want to learn more about the saints. I am checking my church library for the book you recommend!

  53. Elayne says:

    Loved the book My Sisters the Saints, and this was such a fun reflection from the women you quoted!

  54. Shelby Thomas says:

    A saint that I have been inspired by is Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini. She is a modern day saint whose story is so interesting and captivating!


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