Life-Giving Wounds - A Catholic Guide to Healing for Adult Children of Divorce or Separation

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Over half of the people in the United States will experience the splitting up of their parents, statistics say. Yet no matter how “normal” divorce becomes, it always inflicts a profound wound on families—not only the parents, but the children, whether young or grown. The children of divorce are fractured on the level of their very being: heart, mind, and soul. If left untended, this break could pain them for the rest of their lives, tingeing their relationships, their faith, and their capacity for joy. 

Life-Giving Wounds offers a path to recovery for adult children of divorce and separation, and a thorough reference for those who love and care for them. Daniel and Bethany Meola draw from their personal experience, theological formation, and academic research—as well as from their work of accompanying hundreds of men and women from broken homes—to provide a compassionate, spiritually rich, and psychologically sound guidebook following the footsteps of the only true healer: Jesus Christ. 

Readers of Life-Giving Wounds learn to recognize the many ruptures caused by divorce and, more crucially, to find new life by grieving, praying, hoping, loving, forgiving, trusting, and committing to one’s vocation. In the Resurrection, God turns suffering into something infinitely beautiful: redemption. This is where we find healing that lasts. Our wounds may remain with us—as Christ’s did with him—but they can, like his, begin to give life.


Dr. Daniel and Bethany Meola are the founders of Life-Giving Wounds, a Catholic non-profit apostolate dedicated to the healing of adult children of divorce or separation. The Meolas, both graduates of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, live in Maryland with their two daughters.



“A window into a form of suffering that too often goes unrecognized in the Church. Sensitive, well-balanced, practical, theologically rich yet accessible, honest and realistic yet filled with hope.”
—Mary Healy, S.T.D., Author, Healing: Bringing the Gift of God’s Mercy to the World 

“In today’s world, where broken homes and divorce leave lasting scars, Life-Giving Wounds emerges as a beacon of hope.  As one who came from a broken home, I highly recommend this book!”
—Fr. Larry RichardsBe A Man! Becoming the Man God Created You to Be

“The Meolas provide the research on the trauma that can impair the children of divorce even into adulthood. More importantly they show how integrating a Catholic perspective of Christ’s healing grace with sound psychology can overcome and heal these wounds.”   
—Art and Laraine Bennett, Authors, The Temperament God Gave You

“As someone who works to expose the effects of divorce on children, I can say that Life-Giving Wounds is on the short list of organizations I trust and recommend. This book will be a balm to countless hurting souls.”
—Leila Miller, Editor, Primal Loss: The Now-Adult Children of Divorce Speak

“There is nothing else out there like this book! It encourages us not to live in our wounds but to put our hand in Christ’s and to confront our wounds so that we might live as witnesses of his healing love in our world.”
—Mary-Rose Verret, Co-Founder, Witness to Love Marriage Ministry

“Grounded in solid research and the lived experience of many individuals wounded by their parents’ divorce, this book invites the reader to walk a path of healing in light of the Church’s vision of marriage and the wholeness to which we are called in Christ.”
—John Grabowski, Ph.D., Professor of Moral Theology & Ethics, Catholic University of America 

A book as rare as it is needed. A valuable guide for anyone who has encountered suffering in family relationships.”
—Patrick E. Kelly, Supreme Knight, Knights of Columbus 

“The wisdom shared by Dan and Bethany illuminates the darkness of divorce and is a primary source of hope and healing for adult children of divorce and their spouses.”
Scott Weeman, Founder, Catholic in Recovery; Author, The Twelve Steps and the Sacraments

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