Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What's in a Name?

I use nicknames on the blog for my husband and my kids, not so much as to protect them, but to give them a certain extent of perceived anonymity. I'm certain at least 80% of the readers of this blog know my family's real names. Why do I bother mentioning this? Today I want to talk about names and why our boy's names are so important to us. I can't really do that without revealing what their names are, can I?

We've had some great feedback on the name we've chosen for little 7--Leo Athanasius. Catholics get his name, some of my family does not. So for those befuddled by his name I offer our explanation. Our three boys are named for Popes. We have John Paul, our first son born during John Paul II pontificate and just months after my conversion to Catholicism. We weren't blessed with a full term boy again until Lil' Wingnut was born, and what a blessing! He was born months into our current Pope's pontificate. We named our little guy, Benedict. Traveling on down the line of Popes, the next name is John. We have a John Paul, so it makes absolutely no sense to name our little one John. Pius would be next. We batted this around seriously for a time, but it really is difficult to be angry with a Pius, right? Pope Leo it is. We love it.

First name, check. Now for a middle name. Wingnut and I have a special devotion or affinity for Saint Augustine and his mother, Saint Monica. We passed our devotion on to John Paul, so he is John Paul Augustine (or disgustin' as he used to joke). Saint Ambrose baptized Saint Augustine, and so we gave Benedict the middle name Ambrose. Ok, so the two boys have papal first names and Doctors of the Church that begin with the letter "A" for middle names. Enter Saint Athanasius. In a nut shell, that is the progression of thinking for naming our boys.

The girls' names have a system we follow as well. Perhaps I'll write about them another day ;)
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