Celebrity Blogger Week: Maria Nolletti Ross

Although not technically a Celebrity Blogger, we are using the term “Celebrity Blogger Week” to highlight all the members of the Lent Madness Team. Maria is our Resident Foodie whose recipes, or Saintly Sprinkles, can be found in the Saintly Scorecard: The Definitive Guide to Lent Madness 2016.

What’s that you say? You haven’t yet ordered your copy? Act now — they’ve sold out the last couple of years. Don’t be the only Lent Madness fan on your block without one. It will make you feel marginalized. And hopeless.

Maria Nolletti Ross

Maria Nolletti Ross, Lent Madness Resident Foodie, is a member of Church of the Servant Episcopal Church in Wilmington, North Carolina, where she serves in the Wilmington Faiths Against Gun Violence, Youth Group, and Communion Bread Baking Team. She’s a year one student in the Education for Ministry program and in a group that meets in participants’ homes on a rotating basis. Therefore, she’s resolved to spend more time cleaning her house which she shares with her husband, daughter, visiting college son, a geriatric miracle cat, two teenage cats, and fish galore. She invites you to follow along with her as she studies the lives of the saints, uncovers their modern-day messages, and cooks up related recipes on her blog Saints and Recipes. You can find her on Facebook and Instagram (marianollettiross) and check out her Saints and Recipes Facebook page.

1. Since being named a Celebrity Blogger is obviously your greatest lifetime achievement, how will you handle the inevitable post-Lenten letdown?
I will plant tomato, basil, and sunflower seeds. And I will water them with my tears.

2. What is the single strangest thing you’ve learned about one of your assigned saints?
I am intrigued by the trend in which most of the saints honor and pray to previous saints for intercession. The devout humility of this act is a significant ingredient in saintworthiness. For example, St. Bernadette of Lourdes mostly prayed directly to Jesus or with the Blessed Mother Mary. But sometimes when her suffering overwhelmed her, she’d ask her beloved St. Joseph to, “Help me pray!” I love how she turned to the quietest of all saints for help in finding her words.

(Speaking of which, influenced by St. Joseph, I will campaign for him in a relatively quiet manner. If he doesn’t win that which all saints after him know he deserves mostest of all, I promise to handle his defeat with quiet, dignity, and grace. #holyfamily)

3. What is your favorite saint-inspired food and why?unnamed-12
St. Francis of Assisi inspired my love of the significance of bread – it’s served as alms to the poor, shared in friendship and trust, and gifted to us by Jesus Christ in Love. St. Francis adored Communion bread and honored deeply those whom were charged with its care and service. Plus, bread is as versatile as faith and is mostly yummy most of the time.

4. Besides Lent Madness, what do you most look forward to during the season of Lent?
Wearing lots o’ purple! It’s the color associated with St. Michael the Archangel and the crown chakra. Purple is a powerful spiritual color AND it’s in my color wheel.

6 Comments to "Celebrity Blogger Week: Maria Nolletti Ross"

  1. aleathia (dolores) nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores) nicholson
    January 27, 2016 - 12:08 pm | Permalink

    I really appreciate utilizing laypeople as celebrity bloggers. In the past, mostly/only(?) priests/deacons(?) were used. That was nice but seminary didn’t necessarily turn them into writers…I mean, a sermon is one thing and a blog is another. So, welcome Blogger #3.

    • linda's Gravatar linda
      January 27, 2016 - 2:20 pm | Permalink

      “Although not technically a Celebrity Blogger, we are using the term “Celebrity Blogger Week” to highlight all the members of the Lent Madness Team. Maria is our Resident Foodie whose recipes, or Saintly Sprinkles, can be found in the Saintly Scorecard: The Definitive Guide to Lent Madness 201So, we shall now get recipes! Lent Madness is expanding as will I when I try those recipes!

  2. Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
    January 27, 2016 - 3:27 pm | Permalink

    You’re a woman after my own heart! I, too, am rooting for Joseph to win the Halo.
    Bread is my favorite food (followed closely by wine and cheese). And I am a graduate of the Education For Ministry course (I met my wife there). Good to see you back this year!

    • February 3, 2016 - 4:44 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Harlie!

      Fist bump on St. Joseph for the win! #holyfamily


  3. February 3, 2016 - 12:51 pm | Permalink

    Help! I want to know more about Maria’s Communion Bread Baking Team at her church, and I don’t do FaceBook (no time–see how long it took me to get around to writing this comment?). Maria, I’d love to hear from you!

  4. February 3, 2016 - 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Hi Lucille!

    Since you didn’t ask a specific question, I’ll just ramble on a bit:

    Our Communion Bread Baking Team is an off-shoot of our Altar Guide. I’m one of four members, and I provide the bread for the fourth Sunday of each month. On a fifth Sunday, or if someone is traveling and unable to arrange a trade, we serve store-bought, whole-wheat pita bread.

    Our church has always provided real bread for Communion, but some folks prefer the wafers for a variety of reasons. For example, some clergy don’t like the idea of real bread for Communion because they fear the crusty crumbs of say a French baguette that could get EVERYWHERE. So the real trick is to provide a bread with a soft crust and little potential for crumbage. (Yes, I did make up that word.)

    So you’d want to provide a loaf or two for a taste and breakage test. And I recommend that you offer to provide it on a small scale, for example at a Healing, Youth, or Saturday Evening Service. These are services in which people are more likely to be comfortable with a break in tradition.

    We bake the bread at home the day before, place it in a plastic bag once it’s completely cool, and place it in the sacristy for use the next morning.

    The recipe I provided in the Saintly Scorecard will make one large loaf (for our 11:00) and two smaller loaves (for our 8:00 and 9:00).

    Anything else you’d like to know?

    Thanks for commenting!


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