By Rick Kern
The hills may still be alive with the timeless sound of music, but now your home can be alive with the enduring sound of Christmas throughout the year as well. With the rerelease of Maria von Trapp’s charming classic, titled, “Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family,” we are treated to a glimpse into this iconic family’s home-life. And through the inviting publication, readers can once again learn how to add the reality of Christ and the vigor of the Catholic faith to their own family’s lives. Initially published in 1955, booklovers are enjoying a warm and rich anthology of von Trapp family traditions in the book’s newest edition recently reissued by Sophia Institute Press. A publishing house that produces and distributes Catholic classics, Sophia Institute Press also introduces new works by the great and insightful figures of the Catholic intellectual tradition.
Maria was memorialized in Hollywood’s box office blockbuster, “The Sound of Music.” The 1965 film portrayed the von Trapp family’s iconic life and received five Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, as well as two Golden Globes, for Best Motion Picture and Best Actress. Virtually immortalized by Julie Andrews in the movie, everyone’s favorite governess was much more than a singer, she was actually a deeply committed Catholic who lived out her faith as a wife and mother. She gave herself wholeheartedly to making sure that her effervescent beliefs thrived throughout her family, and thus, celebrated the many feasts of the Church’s liturgical year with poems, prayers, food, and fun. Mrs. von Trapp wrote these traditions down in order to pass them on and share them with others. She included the songs they sang for feasts and holidays, as well as her personal recipes for traditional holiday foods in the captivating collection.
Additionally, “Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family” is bursting with delightful stories and enchanting games that capture the imagination of children and make holidays and special occasions loads of fun. It is packed with ideas for turning events such as anniversaries, baptisms, graduations, birthdays, wedding receptions, and even funerals into feasts celebrated in the Lord. Maria unveils the year-round Christian traditions she loved, traditions that created a warm and welcoming Catholic home for her bourgeoning family and promise to do the same for the reader. Her tireless efforts to galvanize her family’s faith will inspire others to create a similar Christian environment characterized by graciousness, love, and peace.
According to the Sophia Institute Press Website, the book’s reviews are stellar. For example, Sam Guzman, Founder and Editor of The Catholic Gentleman, wrote, “Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family” is stunningly produced and one of the coolest guides to the liturgical year I’ve seen. It includes tons of traditional practices, crafts, songs, and more. It’s great for any family looking to introduce more traditions into their liturgical year.”
Additionally, Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle, EWTN TV Host, international speaker, and award-winning author of numerous books also weighed in observing jubilantly, “I am so impressed with this exquisite and unique book written by Maria Augusta von Trapp. It is an exceptional treasure to be sure. I’m grateful that the author took time in writing such an all-encompassing book so that we can be privy to her family’s heartfelt Catholic traditions in celebrating feasts and seasons. I love that Maria compared the Austria traditions with ones she carried on in their home in Stowe, Vermont. A delightful read (which includes music, recipes, illustrations, history, and more), as well as an inspiring encouragement for today’s Catholic families.”
A quaint, homespun book, Maria von Trapp has gathered an enduring collection of earthly resources that lend themselves to establishing a heavenly environment in the Christian home. Whether you want to roll up your sleeves and make Dark Rye Bread, Roast Suckling Pig, Plum Pudding, or Christmas Punch, the book is chock full of mouthwatering recipes. And should you need an Advent Wreath, an angel for the top of your tree, or the music for any number of seasonal hymns, it’s all there assuring that those who follow the suggestions in, “Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family,” will have a home that is an earthly reflection of your heavenly home.