Today I am excited to share with you a very special book, Juggle Without Struggle: Five Secrets, Four Weeks, Nine Minutes to Inner Peace by Peggy O’Niell. It’s a novel that “invites the reader on a journey toward finding daily inner peace contained in 5 secrets, 4 weeks, and nine minutes.” This book was author Peggy O’Neill’s final gift to the world as it was completed before her death to bladder cancer.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and found the novel engaging and easy to read. In fact, I finished the whole book in two days! The concepts of developing a personal prayer time with God and especially “praising and thanking Him in everything” as well as soaking ourselves in scripture are things I am always striving to embrace. Juggle Without Struggle introduces these ideas to readers just starting their prayer life and reinforces it to those who have already developed one. It includes a “Meditation Prayer Card” and also has a “Meditation Prayer Journal” available which helps the reader in their daily discipline.
Last week I had the pleasure of interviewing Jenn Giroux, who wrote the forward to this book and was one of our amazing speakers at the 2012 Columbus Catholic Women’s Conference. I hope you enjoy this special blog post and visit with Jenn!
Can you tell our readers a little bit about Peggie O’Neill and how you became involved with her novel Juggle Without Struggle?
“The family of Peggie O’Neill contacted me about publishing this book. They were familiar with the work we had done with a previous novel that became a Catholic Bestseller. They shared with us that Peggie had written this book prior to her death just over a year ago now. She was an amazing person who lived her Catholic Faith everyday. She started “Prayer Power” in Philadelphia which resulted in over 5000 people praying at the same time every week for priestly vocations. She also was the founder of Birthright and did many other works of charity while raising 5 boys. Peggie worked very hard to complete this novel before she died in which she shared the secrets that she herself practiced in her prayer life for over 40 years.”
Can you share with us why Peggy wrote this book?
“Peggie was involved in the family automobile business for many years. She trained employees from all walks of life and faiths. Her compassionate heart wanted to share a path to peace with all who were struggling from the heartaches that life can carry. She wanted to leave behind a message of hope rooted in the daily practice of spending time in prayer every single day thanking God and surrendering to Him all the pain and suffering in life.”
This book is really a self help book within a novel, quite a unique concept. How is it being received and what impact is it making?
“The book is having an amazing impact on women. So many women today have become too tired, too bitter, or too angry to pray. There are many more women out there that are surviving the stresses in life in this state than we know. And often they keep it all bottled up,without ever letting anyone know it. This book is intended to help those who are challenged in these ways but also seems to be reaching those who already have a regimented prayer routine but may need a new perspective as well.”
Brian Gail states in his review that Juggle without Struggle “is the voice of saints past sharing the eternal secrets of the mystical life with those who would climb the twin peaks of tribulation and consolation.” Do you agree and can you comment on this?
“Yes, I agree with Brian J. Gail. He always has a very unique and powerful way of saying things. Every single one of us has some difficulty (i.e. cross) in life that God has asked us to bear. It is often what leads us back to Him. I believe the “Prayer of St. Francis” is a key and beautiful part of the secret spiritual weapons that are contained inside the pages of this book that allow the reader to embrace a new and selfless outlook. It also is a great reminder that we need to thank God even in the “bad” times.”
How do the peace principals fit in with traditional Catholic Spirituality?
“Praising God in all things and at all times, embracing every moment as God’s precious gift to our lives, counting our blessings every day while asking God to help us to use our gifts to honor Him, choosing to forgive others who have wounded us, and encouraging others are all acts of the will that are in line with all that I have learned in my life about prayers of petition and thanksgiving and Christian charity toward “the least of my brothers” in my Catholic Faith. Yet, they are also universal elements of spirituality that reach across faith lines.”
As a mother of 9, I am sure you do plenty of juggling. Do you apply the peace principles in your life?
“Yes, I try to do this. For me I found the book to be a great reminder to give every moment, every sadness, every hurt, and every joy to God. We may know these things in our head but practicing them everyday in our hearts requires discipline and blind Faith. This book is an invitation to allow God’s grace to work in our heart and a roadmap to inner peace. Practicing the 5 secrets are a natural supplement to frequent reception of the sacraments.”
Where can readers find this book?
“Juggle Without Struggle is distributed by Catholic Word. I would encourage women to check at their local Catholic book store or visit Catholic Word online at: