Fertile Ground: A Pilgrimage through Pregnancy
by Laura S. Jansson
Pregnancy is not just a trek from one medical appointment to another but a journey of the heart. Here at last is a guidebook through its sacred terrain. For each week, Orthodox doula Laura Jansson provides a new reflection on a theme specific to the ground covered at that stage. From one milestone to the next, she helps us unearth the spiritual treasures buried within the physical experiences of childbearing. These are gifts of love from a merciful God who reaches out to us, making a perilous expedition into a path of salvation.
About the Author: Laura S. Jansson is an Orthodox Christian doula, childbirth educator, and mother living and writing at the intersection of birth and faith. She earned her Masters degree in Theology and Philosophy from the University of Oxford, UK, and has also resided in the USA, Serbia, Germany, and Fiji. Since 2005 she has guided scores of expectant mothers on the path to parenthood, witnessing with wonder as bellies and souls grow along the way.
Praise for Fertile Ground: A Pilgrimage through Pregnancy
"This eloquent book leads us week by week through the deepening journey to birth, accompanied by the insights the Orthodox faith uniquely can provide. Fertile Ground is an able companion and a wise guide to the deeply transformative experience of pregnancy and birth." -Kh. Frederica Matthewes-Green, author, mother, grandmother, and former childbirth educator
"Laura captures the sacred and eternal aspects of pregnancy and childbirth that can get lost in the medical exams, morning sickness, and dramatic life changes. She does not shy away from or sugar-coat the difficult topics or real hardships of pregnancy. Rather, she laces them with stories, scriptures, and theological reflection to find, within them, Christ Himself. This book captures how, with pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting, we find ourselves drawn forward toward the love of God who invites us to co-create with Him." -Dr. Philip Mamalakis, professor at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, author of Parenting Toward the Kingdom, and father of seven
"Laura’s incredible ability to home in on the feelings of women in pregnancy and immediate postpartum stages gives her work an astonishing depth. As the mother of eleven children, I had many opportunities to reflect and pray while pregnant but never found an appropriate resource. This book was long needed. I will buy it for every pregnant mother I know." -Pres. Melissa Naasko, mother of 11, clergy wife, and author of Fasting as a Family