Book Review: “Holiness For Housewives: And Other Working Women” ~ Hubert Van Zeller

Holiness For Housewives: And Other Working Women Book Cover Holiness For Housewives: And Other Working Women
Hubert Van Zeller
Sophia Institute Press
April 1, 1997
104 pages

Synopsis: This unique spiritual guide will help you grow holier and more prayerful as you perform the most menial household chores -- not in spite of those chores, but in the midst of them.

Written especially for women in charge of households, Holiness for Housewives will help you better understand and respect your vocation as a housewife -- and discover in it your own God-given path to sanctity.

This handy guide will show you how to:

  • Find meaning in even the most boring work
  • Pray in the midst of a bustling household
  • Bear the stress of those long days in which the work never seems to end
  • Develop a greater awareness of God s presence -- even amid the diapers and the dirty dishes
  • Learn to rely more on your will and less on emotions, when life seems to be an endless round of drudgery
  • Handle your burdens and sorrows with prayers that are especially fashioned for housewivesLet Holiness for Housewives show you how to find and savor the lasting pleasures that await you in your noble, God-given vocation as a housewife! (from publisher)


I knew I was going to like this book as soon as I read the title “Holiness For Housewives: And Other Working Women”. Zeller chose to say other, which gave me confidence that he understood that although being a housewife and stay at home mum may not be a paid job, it is WORK. Upon reading the book I realised further in how much detail he did in fact understand. He understood our marriages, our vocation and how obtaining a substantial prayer life is a challenge.

The book had a different tone to the other books I have reviewed recently. It wasn’t a lighthearted ‘chatty’ styled book. It was direct, deep and took the tone of a experienced spiritual director.

This book is perfect if you are feeling exhausted and overwhelmed with your duties. His common sense and practical insights are reassuring and hopeful.

Zeller makes a very clear point of not comparing yourself to others, especially those of a different vocation. Some would lament “if only I was a contemplative nun, then I would have time for prayer!” Instead he gives advice on how you can remain close to God through your vocation, in a way unique to your work. He gives instruction on how to make your life a prayer and find sanctity in the menial daily tasks. Tasks, that from the outside look tedious and even at times feel beneath you, these can be sanctified and done for the love of God.

He goes on to give an example of the Christian monks, who found that the most enjoyable, peaceful times were in their work, in working in the garden or baking bread for example.

You can find this peace too. Perhaps in scrubbing the shower floor or washing those dishes.

Filed Under: Book ClubBook ReviewsFeaturedReviews

About the Author: Mother of 4 beautiful girls and 1 beautiful boy. Co-Founder of the website and dedicated stay-at-home-mum. "Our inspiration for the website was to create a platform for Catholic Mums to be able to connect with each other for support and to facilitate growth. We wanted a safe place to share thoughts on different family issues, with an underlying Catholic value system."

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