Denver Catholic’s 2020 Christmas gift guide

Denver Catholic Staff

If you’re anything like us, then you can hardly believe we’re just slightly over a month away from Christmas. Although many of us have hardly left our homes this year and the days (quite literally!) seem to blend together like some weird marathon session of Groundhog Day, it certainly hasn’t slowed the passage of time.

We’re all in need of a little bit of holiday cheer, and thankfully it’s right around the corner. While it seems like everything else in world has been cancelled, it’s comforting to know that Christmas and the immense joy that Christ brought to the world cannot and will not be cancelled.

In the spirit of the season and to help spread a little bit of that joy, we present our 2020 gift guide. May your Christmas season be full of jubilation and rejuvenation!

Books

We’ve all likely been glued to our phones or a screen of some sort more than usual this year, but it’s never too late the kick the habit! Why not bury your face in a good book instead? It’s better for the brain, more enriching, and the pages don’t emit a mind-numbing blue glow. 

1. Consecration to St. Joseph by Father Donald Calloway (Marian Press), $14.95 
2. The Imitation of Mary by Father Quan Tran (Sophia Press), $17.95
3. Pray, Hope, & Don’t Worry Prayer Journal for Catholic Women: A 52-Week Guided Devotional Through Scripture and the Saints to Overcome Anxiety by Sara A. Smith (Holy Water Books), $13.95 
4. Theology of Home: Finding the Eternal in the Everyday (TAN Books), $34.95 
5. Theology of Home II: The Spiritual Art of Home Making (TAN Books), $34.95
6. Brilliant! 25 Catholic Scientists, Mathematicians, and Supersmart People by David Michael Warren (Word on Fire), $24.95 
7. Fatima: 100 Questions and Answers on the Marian Apparitions by Paul Senz (Ignatius Press), $14.95 

Clothing/Accessories 

Just because we’re Catholic doesn’t mean we have to be dressed for Sunday Mass all the time, nor does it mean we can’t wear some hip Catholic gear every once in a while. Here are just a few small Catholic businesses that are thinking outside the box when it comes to clothing and accessories. 

More Than You Realize Skyline women’s t-shirt

1. More Than You Realize (mtyrstore.org)
2. Catholic Socks & That One Sheep shirts (sockreligious.com
3. Pink Salt Riot Jewelry (pinksaltriot.com
4. Rosary Habit jewelry (rosaryhabit.com
5. Brick House in the City (brickhouseinthecity.com
6. PAL Campaign (palcampaign.com

Baby/Kids/Teen 

Look beyond the shelves of Target and Walmart when shopping for the little ones and kids in your lives. From adorable swaddles to books of the children’s and comic variety, here are a few Catholic alternatives. 

Noah’s Wooden Ark Animal Shape Sorter

1. Be A Heart Catholic baby swaddles (beaheart.com), $28 
2. Chews Life rosaries (chewslife.com), $38 
3. Custom saint peg dolls (TheCheerfulGifter Etsy shop) 
4. Noah’s Wooden Ark Animal Shape Sorter (Tender Leaf Toys), $99
5. Stories of the Saints: Bold and Inspiring Tales of Adventure, Grace and Courage by Carey Wallace (Workman Publishing), $24.95 
6. Lily Lolek: Future Saint by Katie Warner (TAN Books), $16.95 
7. The Four Gospels for Young Catholics (Pauline Books and Media), $29.95 
8. Friends Again by Karine-Marie Amiot & Violaine Costa (Magnificat), $14.99 
9. The Kingstone Bible Comic Books (Kingstone) 

Practical/Religious gifts 

While many religious gifts in the past seemed to be better suited for your grandma than your niece, that is no longer the case. Consider gifting one of these sacred gifts this Christmas season. Included are a couple of unique new Bibles, just in case yours or someone’s you know is getting a little raggedy. 

Little Rose Shop Coffee Mug

1. Monk Manual 90-planner, $38 (monkmanual.com
2. Rugged Rosaries (cordbands.com
3. The Catholic Candle Company (catholiccandlecompany.com
4. The Catholic Woodworker Crucifixes (catholicwoodworker.com
5. The Little Rose Shop: Unique Catholic prints, coffee mugs and more (thelittleroseshop.com
6. The Catholic Journaling Bible (Blessed is She), $49.95
7. The Word On Fire Bible, Vol. 1: The Gospels (Word on Fire), starts at $29.95 
8. The Augustine Bible ESV-CE (Augustine Institute), starts at $49.95 

Local stores 

It’s important to support small, local Catholic businesses, and especially so this year. Lucky for us, there are quite a few just around the block, and they have wide ranges of gifts that would be perfect for your loved ones of all ages. The best part is you can order online too! 

The Retro in Arvada

1. Bethlehem Handicrafts (bethlehemhandicrafts.com
2. Creator Mundi (creatormundi.com
3. Stargazer Fine Chocolates (stargazerfinechocolates.com
4. Gerkens Religious Supplies (gerkens.com
5. The Retro, home of Full of Grace USA and Motherboards (theretro.net

COMING UP: ‘I have seen the Lord’: St. Vincent de Paul’s new adoration chapel honors St. Mary Magdelene’s witness

Sign up for a digital subscription to Denver Catholic!

“I have seen the Lord.” (John 20:18). 

One couple from St. Vincent de Paul parish took these words to heart with urgency last year during the pandemic and decided to build a Eucharistic Adoration chapel for their fellow faithful to be in the Lord’s presence themselves. 

Mike and Shari Sullivan donated design and construction of the new Eucharistic Adoration Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene adjacent to their parish church to make a space for prayer and adoration that they felt needed to be reinstated, especially during the difficult days of COVID-19. 

The chapel was completed this spring and dedicated during Divine Mercy weekend with a special blessing from Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila. 

“It was invigorating to have the archbishop bless the chapel,” Mike said. “The church has been buzzing.” 

Mike has been a Catholic and a member of St. Vincent de Paul since his baptism, which he jokes was around the time the cornerstone was placed in 1951. The Sullivans’ five children all attended the attached school and had their sacraments completed at St. Vincent de Paul too. 

Archbishop Samuel Aquila dedicated the St. Mary Magdalene adoration chapel with a prayer and blessing at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church on April 9, 2021, in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Daniel Petty/Denver Catholic)

The 26-by 40-foot chapel is a gift to fellow parishioners of a church that has meant so much to their family for decades, and to all who want to participate in prayer and adoration. 

The architect and contractor are both Catholic, both of whom helped in the design of the Catholic structure, and the construction crew broke ground in mid-December. The Sullivans wanted to reclaim any Catholic artifacts or structural pieces they could for the new chapel. Some of the most striking features of the chapel are the six stained glass windows Mike was able to secure from a demolished church in New York. 

The windows were created by Franz Xaver Zettler who was among a handful of artists known for the Munich style of stained glass from the 19th century.  The Munich style is accomplished by painting detailed pictures on large pieces of glass unlike other stained-glass methods, which use smaller pieces of colored glass to make an image. 

The two primary stained-glass windows depict St. Augustine and St. Mary Magdalene, the chapel’s namesake, and they frame either side of the altar which holds the tabernacle and monstrance — both reused from St.  Vincent De Paul church.  

The Sullivans wanted to design a cloistered feel for the space and included the traditional grill and archway that opens into the pews and kneelers with woodwork from St. Meinrad Archabbey in southern Indiana. 

The chapel was generously donated by Mike and Shari Sullivan. The stained glass windows, which depict St. Augustine and St. Mary Magdalene, were created by Franz Xaver Zettler, who was among a handful of artists known for the Munich style of stained glass from the 19th century. (Photo by Daniel Petty/Denver Catholic)

Shari is a convert to Catholicism and didn’t grow up with the practice of Eucharistic adoration, but St. Vincent de Paul pastor Father John Hilton told her to watch how adoration will transform the parish. She said she knows it will, because of what regular Eucharistic adoration has done for her personally. 

The Sullivans are excited that the teachers at St. Vincent de Paul school plan to bring their classes to the warm and inviting chapel to learn about the practice of adoration and reflect on the presence of Christ in the Eucharist. 

The words of St. Mary Magdalene “I have seen the Lord,” have become the motto of the chapel, Mike said, and they are emblazoned on a brass plaque to remind those who enter the holy space of Christ’s presence and the personal transformation offered to those inside.

The St. Vincent de Paul  Church and The Eucharistic Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene is located at 2375 E. Arizona Ave. Denver 80210 on the corner of Arizona and Josephine Street. The chapel is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. Visit https://saintvincents.org/adorationchapel1 for more information about the chapel and to look for updates on expanded hours as they occur.