Videos of Fr. Leo’s 

Excellent Adventures

Fr. Leo is back in Italy right now following a Couples’ Retreat with Teresa Tomeo and her husband, Deacon Don Pastore. As he reunites with his priest friends from seminary, it provides another opportunity to check out more on Fr. Leo’s latest adventures, pilgrimages and involvements. And he wants you to get involved.

1) Video Trailer for the Napa Valley Pilgrimage 2014

Click to see the video on Youtube and share with friends!


Fr. Leo led this pilgrimage back in 2011 and it was an incredible time. But don’t take out word for it, check out the trailer by clicking the linked image! Preview not only a wonderful experience and time with other pilgrims, enjoying the tastes of Napa Valley, but truly venture deeper into the Catholic faith in ways you never thought possible. The Fruit of the Vine, Work of Human Hands trip is November 9-14, 2014 and you can find out how to register by going to the following link:

2) Please Support the 225


Fr. Leo invites you to support The 225, a celebration of the 225th Anniversary of the first diocese in the United States, Baltimore, MD – the place he calls home. We’re planning a number of events featuring the award winning film, The Blood & The Rose with reflections from Father Leo and others. The Blood and The Rose is the most complete and inspiring documentary film about the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe. These events provide a true opportunity for spiritual growth and evangelization, as well as a fundraising opportunity for your cause.

Purchase your spiritual event package before July 31, 2014, the 12th anniversary of St. Juan Diego’s canonization, to get it at the special discount $525. After July 31, the package will cost $1000.00 to license the film, so raise more funds for your parish, group, or organization while you can.
3) The Gift 

The Gift (Gluten Intolerant Faithful Thanksgiving) has been gaining a lot of attention from parishes, media and faithful alike. Watch the video by clicking the image above and share with your parish to share the Gift with those in need. You can check with Alviti Creations to find out more about the Gift at

4) Return to the Holy Land

Following an incredible journey earlier in 2014, Fr. Leo is happy to return to the Holy Land on February 1-12, 2015, and you’re invited!

You can click the link below for the registration form to preview the adventure, and be sure to also check out some of Fr. Leo’s blog posts and video from earlier this year.

5) Stay in Touch

Some things never change! Check out more by going to Fr. Leo’s Facebook page.

Fr. Leo may be returning next week, but he hits the ground running, visiting Fairfax, VA, Ellicott City, MD, Spring Lake, NJ, Fort Wayne, IN, and more events before heading off for the Steubenville Conferences in June and July. So he will be sending out a number of Blasts from the Past in the coming summer months.
But no matter where he is, you can keep up and in touch with him via Facebook and Twitter. He loves to have a conversation, and would love to meet more of the ‘GBM fam’, so be sure to drop a line his way and SHARE with family and friends.

6) Check out Fr. Leo’s books & resources!
Finally, you should be sure to catch up on summer reading by checking out Fr. Leo’s newest book and theology of food, Epic Food Fight and get a Bite-Sized History of Salvation. And be sure to keep up with your month-a-versary with your spouse by checking out Spicing Up Married Life. Of course, you can’t go wrong with the classic Grace Before Meals, featuring the Famous Fusion Fajitas recipe that defeated Bobby Flay, coming up on the 5th Anniversary in June!

Let us Pray for those going on vacation:


Father in Heaven, guide all travelers in their destinations. Give them patience, joy, perseverance and love as they travel in these coming summer months.  Provide them safety and peace, now and until they reach their final destination in heaven, through your mercy and goodness, in the name of Jesus The Lord. 



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Posted in Epic Food Fight, GIFT, Prayers, Spicing Up Married Life, Video, What's On the Table | No Comments »

Ordinary Acts with Great Love

Finally! And just in time, I was able to finish a little video I made in memory of my trip to Kolkata (formerly, Calcutta), where the Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, the saintly foundress of the Missionaries of Charity, began her work serving the poorest of the poor.

The Tomb of Mother Teresa

I say just in time because May is dedicated to the Blessed Mother, and the gift of motherhood for all God’s children. That means we honor both our biological mothers and our spiritual mothers.  (Hopefully, they are one in the same!) 

Another Spiritual Mother, Dolores Hart, the Prioress of her convent, and also the famous actress who co-stared with Elvis Presley in his first movie. She is famous for being the first woman to kiss the King of Rock and Roll in a Hollywood blockbuster movie.

This little video uses a modern Christian singer and songwriter, Toby Mac.  He sings of Christianity as a form of extraordinary love.  It reminded me of a quote from Mother Teresa –  one of my favorite quotes.  She says, “Do small acts with great love!”


I hope this little video I made on my iPad (i.e., not perfect quality), shows that God can do great things even with simple ingredients, like wheat, water, oil, and wine. These are the things that make up our Sacramental life in Church! You can learn more about this “theology of food” from my newest book, ‘Epic Food Fight: A Bitesized History of Salvation.” To learn more about the book, check out a Seminarian’s review.

Hopefully seeing this video will inspire you to do your daily chores, tasks and responsibilities with Christ’s extraordinary love!

Let us Pray:

Father in Heaven, You have called us to greatness. But that doesn’t mean simply being in positions of power or riches. You call us to do great things with our lives by simply being as faithful as possible in the smaller things in life. Help us to have the courage to see everything in our day as opportunities to know, love and serve You.  Through Christ our Lord. Amen.





  • What’s the most extraordinary act of love you committed or received?
  • What’s the most “meaningless” thing you do all day, and how can you make it more meaningful with Christ?
  • Will you help us spread this video message by sending it to family, friends, and your parishioners?


Your responses and posts to these questions, along with any other comments, are very helpful in keeping our movement strong.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts and questions.

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Any submissions may be used in future Grace Before Meals publications.

Posted in Epic Food Fight, Faithful Foodie, Seminarians, Video | No Comments »

Posted May 14th, 2014 | Dinner Discussion, GIFT, Prayers, Video


The GIFT for Gluten Conditions and Holy Communion

This past Mother’s Day Weekend I launched a new video on our social network avenues.  We wanted to share with you a new liturgical vessel that I created along with Alviti Creations.  It’s called “GIFT” – Gluten Intolerant Faithful Thanksgiving.  This new (first of its kind, really) hook-on-mini-ciboria provides a simple solution for churches who have members who have to receive a special gluten free host.  As I travel across the country, I’ve seen how people with gluten intolerance, wheat allergies or celiac disease create tension, confusion and unnecessary attention for receiving Holy Communion. I knew there had to be a better way!     

Click to watch the promo video about the GIFT

With the GIFT, Grace Before Meals has given Mother Church a helpful tool, a new sacred vessel to help parishioners realize that Mother Church understands your special condition.

These “bagels” from the Holy Land are delicious, but for many people with gluten conditions, they cannot enjoy the “breaking of the bread.”

How fitting to release our product on Mother’s Day. It reminds me of how moms (and dads too), have to help their children with special conditions feel as “normal” as possible.  Recently I met a mother whose child was diagnosed with severe food allergies.  This mother had to relearn how to cook everything! And she did it because she has the great responsibility to feed her children, while never making her child sense they are a “burden.”

I met this wonderful family in Oak Grove, Minnesota. They adopted all of these children from Mother Theresa’s Orphanage from around the world. They know children aren’t a ‘burden’ but the greatest of blessings!

If you have a gluten condition, don’t worry!  Mother Church wants to feed you with the Body and Blood of Christ.  This GIFT vessel will help you to receive the GREATEST GIFT of all – the Eucharist.

May I ask that you PLEASE tell your friends, fellow parishioners, and your priests about this video. PLEASE show them this link on how to get this for their faith community and parish.  PLEASE help us to spread the message about sincere people who have gluten concerns.  And, please pray that this GIFT will help all of us value our Heavenly Faith and our Heavenly Food.

Let us Pray:


Lord, You give us the Eucharist as the memorial of Your suffering and death.  May our worship of Sacrament of Your Body and Blood, help us to experience the salvation You won for us, and the peace of the Kingdom.  Where You live and reign forever and ever. Amen.



  • Do you have Gluten conditions, and do you think this GIFT will help you in receiving Holy Communion?  
  • Why do you suppose there are more people who are developing allergies to common foods such as peanuts, wheat, and dairy?  
  • Do you have any ideas on how we can get this message of the GIFT out there in the world, to help people with Gluten Conditions to receive the Eucharist peacefully?


Your responses and posts to these questions, along with any other comments, are very helpful in keeping our movement strong.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts and questions.

5/18/14 – 5/27/14


Rome, Italy 

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Posted in Dinner Discussion, GIFT, Prayers, Video | 5 Comments »

Posted May 7th, 2014 | Dinner Discussion, Holiday, Prayers


Moms and Motherhood

Mother’s Day is THIS SUNDAY!  Accordingly, this month of May has long been dedicated to a spiritual mother of supreme excellence – the Blessed Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus – who is our God.  This month, and this particular Sunday, reminds us that moms are so much more than “important.”  They are absolutely necessary!

So to compliment the biological side of motherhood, I also want to encourage all to see how mothers are called to be spiritual mothers as well.  Motherhood isn’t limited to bringing a body into this world.  Real motherhood is about recognizing and nurturing how you bring a soul – a future saint – into this world.

When I was in Calcutta, India, I worked with the Missionaries of Charity – the religious sisters founded by Blessed Teresa of Calcutta.  They are like spiritual mothers to so many people.  In many ways, while they haven’t had any biological children of their own, one of their responsibilities is to be mothers to orphaned children.  Gratefully, some orphaned children are adopted into loving homes.  Many others grow up in the orphanage with the Missionaries of Charities becoming their sisters, friends and mothers.

Little “Hiya” was recently adopted by a loving couple from Europe through the efforts of the Missionaries of Charity.

On this trip I met a young girl, recently married, and now pregnant with her first child.  I was told that according to the Indian tradition, the expectant mother returns to her home in preparation for the child’s birth.  It helps the young girl remember how she was raised in a loving home.  In this case, this former orphan, now newly married woman and soon-to-be-mother, returned to her orphanage home to give birth.

This young woman, recently married, was raised in an orphanage by the Missionaries of Charity.

She and her husband were so excited to return to her “home” – even though it was orphanage.  Despite her official status as being raised without parents, she knew she had a “mother” looking after her through the Missionaries of Charity.  She explained to me that the religious sisters were the best mothers a girl could have.  Meeting this young girl and hearing her story was a touching and moving reminder of moms and motherhood as a necessary part of God’s loving plan.

This Mother’s Day consider praying for your moms in a special way.  By feeding us in their womb, they give us life.  By giving us spiritual food and by teaching their children how to pray, know, love, and serve God, these mothers give their children spiritual life with the reward of Eternal Life.

Statue of Blessed Mother Theresa of Calcutta as she accepted and raised children abandoned on the streets of Calcutta.

Let us Pray:


Father of all, may You bless our mothers with the reward of bringing life into the world.  We pray that a culture of life will help all to recognize a supreme gift of mothers who give life – both biological life and spiritual life to all of God’s children.  May our Blessed Mother’s Prayers give comfort and encouragement to all mothers who face challenging situations, and may our mothers who have died be given God’s mercy and His eternal reward in Heaven.  We ask all through Christ our Lord.  Amen. 



  • What is the quality about your mother that you appreciate the most?
  • Who are some of your “spiritual mothers” and why?
  • What is the best Mother’s Day Gift you have given/received?

Your responses and posts to these questions, along with any other comments, are very helpful in keeping our movement strong.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts and questions.

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Any submissions may be used in future Grace Before Meals publications.

Posted in Dinner Discussion, Holiday, Prayers | 2 Comments »