Our Lady of Hot Messes: Getting Real with God in Dive Bars and Confessionals

Our Lady of Hot Messes: Getting Real with God in Dive Bars and Confessionals

Our Lady of Hot Messes: Getting Real with God in Dive Bars and Confessionals

Our Lady of Hot Messes: Getting Real with God in Dive Bars and Confessionals


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Leticia Ochoa Adams met Jesus in a dive bar when she was eighteen years old.

She didn’t actually meet Jesus, but it was there where she first witnessed holiness in action. The bar’s regulars taught her about the importance of community, being honest about who she is, not giving up on people, and how to laugh—even when awful things happen.

In Our Lady of Hot Messes, Ochoa Adams tells the ongoing story of her redemption. At times funny and heartbreaking, but always gritty and unflinchingly honest, her story shows that no matter what you’re dealing with, God wants you to trust in his love.

The Tejana daughter of a single mother—a cycle she would repeat in her own life—Ochoa Adams was sexually abused as a child. She married after a two-week courtship and, eight years later, divorced her husband who struggled with drug addiction. In between she suffered a late-term miscarriage and had three more children back-to-back.

She always thought a dream life meant having a big house, kids, lots of money, and new cars. Since she hadn’t yet cracked the code for the American dream, “I turned to the person that every American woman turns to when looking for a way to make a better life for herself: Oprah.”

Watching the daytime talk show queen helped Ochoa Adams put a name to what happened to her as a child. But she was still searching for something more. Ochoa Adams was baptized Catholic but attended a small-town Baptist church growing up. When she reverted to Catholicism at age thirty-three in order to marry her second husband, Ochoa Adams was convinced that Catholics had all of the answers to life’s toughest questions. But she quickly learned that becoming Catholic didn’t mean she could just erase her bad choices and difficult past. And just when she thought she was getting her life together, her son, Anthony, died by suicide.

God, therapy, and caring priests helped her face her pain and heal her brokenness. She wants you to see yourself in her mistakes, learn from them, and realize along with her that even when we’ve put our trust in God—even if it’s begrudgingly—we still have to do the tough work to become the person God wants us to be.

“I still make mistakes,” she says, “but I’m trying not to live as a hot mess even when things around me are messy.”

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781646801510
Publisher: Ave Maria Press
Publication date: 11/11/2022
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: eBook
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 587,558
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Leticia Ochoa Adams is a Catholic writer and speaker.

Since the death of her son, Anthony, by suicide in 2017, she has focused her work being a witness to suffering and God’s healing. Ochoa Adams is a contributor to several books, including Surprised by Life, The Catholic Hipster Handbook, The Ave Prayer Book for Catholic Mothers, and Responding to Suicide.

She has a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Holy Apostles College and Seminary. She has written for Our Sunday Visitor, The National Catholic Reporter, FemCatholic, The Catholic Herald, Patheos, and Aleteia. Ochoa Adams was a frequent guest on The Jen Fulwiler Show on SiriusXM’s The Catholic Channel, and has appeared on a number of podcasts, including Terrible, Thanks for Asking with Nora McInerny.

She lives with her family in the Austin, Texas, area.

Nora McInerny is the author of It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too) and the host of the podcast Terrible, Thanks for Asking.

Table of Contents

Foreword Nora McInerny ix

Introduction xiii

1 Jesus Is Not Your BFF 1

2 Sheep are Dumb 9

3 Prayer Works. Get Life Insurance Anyway 17

4 Grief Humor 25

5 Your Kids Need You to Heal, Not Die for Them 33

6 How to Train Your Dragon 43

7 Our Lady of Hot Messes 49

8 Give Everything to God, but Get Your Life Together 57

9 Doomscrolling and Other Ways We Numb Ourselves 63

10 Nobody Goes Live When Sh*t Hits the Fan 69

11 Kids Can Do Their Own Laundry 75

12 Lavender is the New Drug 83

13 The G Code 89

14 Cussing is Normal 95

15 Holiness in Dive Bars 103

16 You Are Not a Machine 111

17 2020 115

18 Popping the Catholic Bubble 123

19 Praying the Rosary like a Loser 131

Acknowledgments 139

Notes 141

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“God bless this mess! Funny, engaging, haunting, and real—this is the book a growing Church needs. Ready or not, you’re gon’ learn today!” —Marcia Lane-McGee, coauthor of Fat Luther, Slim Pickin's

“I cannot recommend Our Lady of Hot Messes enough. You will laugh, cry, and be drawn to God through every page. Thank you, Leticia Ochoa Adams, for your brutal honesty and for bringing hope to those who are struggling to find it.” —Fr. Rob Galea, author of Breakthrough

“In a culture obsessed with social media–perfect posts, Leticia Ochoa Adams’s voice is a needed breath of fresh air. Her raw and honest story is a reminder that all people, regardless of their past or trauma, are loved by God even in the messiness.” —Alessandra Harris, writer and author of Last Place Seen

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