Straus is a writer and national speaker on spiritual parenting,
and adolescent self-esteem and spirituality. Also a former English
and Drama teacher and screenwriter, with over 150 top professional
awards, Celia lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband, two
daughters, Julia and Emily and her german short-haired pointer,
Chloe. She has written two books of poetry for teen girls, Prayers
On My Pillow, Inspiration for Girls On the Threshold of Change
and More Prayers On My Pillow, Words of Comfort and Hope for Girls
On The Journey to Self and the spoken word CD "I'm More Than
What I Seem". Her next book is The Mother Daughter Sacred
Circle, Reconnecting Through Spirit.
continues to answer all requests for prayer-poems from girls and
women of all ages who visit this site.
the book first came out in the fall of 1998, neither I nor my
two daughters had any idea how it would be received. However,
the overwhelmingly positive responses shouldn't have surprised
us. What is most real and personal in our lives is also what is
most universal in the lives of others. Our inner selves yearn
for truth and for the recognition of Spirit. Any expression of
the interior journey of adolescence, in concrete and credible
terms that "ring true", meets this urgent and compelling yearning
at its most basic level. The form of expression I choose, prayer-poetry,
recognizes and respects the interior life of an adolescent girl
or, as I discovered from Moms who have become avid readers of
the prayers as well, anyone who has ever been an adolescent girl.
In fact, the inspiration for this second volume comes from the
reactions of so many girls and women to the first book. Most of
these prayers I wrote in response to requests for prayers that
came into my web site, www..
established the Web site to introduce readers to the book, but
I soon discovered that had become a kind of on
line youth ministry, providing support and solace for girls and
their families as they weather the stormy times that inevitably
occur in any and all relationships. Some months nearly 100,000
people visit the site and each day I receive dozens of personal
requests for individualized prayers. I hear from teenage girls
of all ages who are hoping to find, through spirituality, the
answers to problems such as peer pressure, eating disorders, loneliness,
depression, divorce, substance abuse and, of course, boys and
sex. I also hear from the mothers, sisters, friends and relatives
of those teenage girls who are seeking to stay connected as the
girls go through adolescent changes.
of prayer/poems, like the original is written in the first person.
The prayers address life's rhythm of successes and failures with
words of compassion and courage that invite personalization and
ownership on the part of the reader or, better yet, the listener.
The more prayers I write, the more I realize that prayer is far
more about listening than speaking; that we all are like the Hebrew
prophet Elijah, who heard the Lord, not in the storm, neither
in the earthquake nor the fire, but in that "still small voice".
My "still small voice" speaks in poetic forms using the journey
to self-knowledge to cope with life's problems, to live life more
fully, and in the process, to discover the Divine within."
look at the LA Times articles.