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about Maria of Agreda's biography . . .  Sor Maria's writing desk and quill pen, Convent of the Conception, Agreda, Spain

My new, popularly-written, biography of Sor Maria, entitled  -- Maria of Agreda: Mystical Lady in Blue --   is now a reality with the University of New Mexico Press (UNMP). Read about immediate availability here, or call UNMP toll-free at 1-800-249-7737. Early sales in the popular and educational markets have been so robust that the softcover edition (January 15, 2010) is now available.

While this biography offers careful research and thorough annotations, it is written in an accessible contemporary style, in order to enliven Sor Maria's inspiring story for as wide of an audience as possible. It includes 37 images ranging from photographs of Sor Maria's convent and artifacts in Spain, to illustrations from her own 17th century publications, plus maps of key locations in Spain and the American Southwest.

Early comments on the book have been very positive, from both religious and scholarly reviewers.

Marilyn Fedewa makes this seventeenth century Spanish mystic come to life in her very readable style. You begin to admire Sor Maria's spirituality, humility, obedience and intense faith. Sor Maria becomes very real to the reader. You will not soon forget this incredible woman of God.
                                                                                                                           Monsignor Michael D. Murphy
                                                                                                                                       Moderator of the Curia
                                                                                                               Diocese of Lansing (Michigan, USA)

St. Augustine's Church, New Mexico, to which the Jumano Indians traveled after Sor Maria's supernatural appearances to themThe length of the biography in published form is about 368 pages. It has been several years in the making, and will be the first definitive biography -- in English -- of this inspiring mystic. It covers every key period and aspect of her life, and includes many direct quotes from Sor Maria, from autobiographical material currently available only in Spanish. These include fascinating comments on her early spiritual life, her mystical experiences as the Lady in Blue, the Inquisition's interrogation of her, and her correspondence with the king of Spain. I have also referenced most known historical sources on Sor Maria, and had the good fortune of direct access to convent archives through an archivist personally assigned to me. It has also been my pleasure to interact with many scholars in the U.S. who are experts on Sor Maria's life and works, as well as on many aspects of 17th century history and literature.

Of course, no amount of "ivory-tower" research can substitute for direct knowledge or experience of a subject. As many journalists say, there is nothing quite as transformational, in the process of getting to know a subject, as the "rule of the feet." That is, physically meeting the subject, or visiting the location of the story. After reading Sor Maria's 2,700-page account of the life of Mary, Mystical City of God, I determined to do just that. In 1998, I visited her convent in Agreda, Spain. There I steeped myself in the arid mountainous atmosphere of her little-changed 17th century convent. I photographed and audio-taped interviews with her successors, and meditated and prayed in the presence of her uncorrupted body.

After returning to the States I maintained contact with the convent's archivists, carefully researched Sor Maria's life in authenticated documents, and corresponded with scholarly experts on her life and times. I was even more committed than before, to showcase Sor Maria's life in a more contemporary format, in order to make it more accessible and understandable to people today. At first I envisioned writing a novel about her, because so many aspects of her life were so incredible, that a fictionalized treatment seemed a more appropriate format. However, after writing several non-fiction articles about her, and co-authoring in 2003 a biography of a prominent Michigan political figure, I was finally ready to tackle this biographical treatment of her life.

         Thank you for visiting, and please come back soon!

          Marilyn H. Fedewa

    Please direct email to: M dot Agreda @ Comcast dot Net , and be sure to include the word "Agreda" somewhere in the subject line, so your message doesn't get accidentally blocked by our Spam Control program!

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