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Come Visit Our Store!

Our location and hours:

532 North Dodge Street
Iowa City, Iowa 52245
Phone: 319-337-6893
Fax: 319-354-3254

Please call for extended seasonal business hours

The Mustard Seed, Inc. Catholic Books and Gifts can be found on the corner of North Dodge Street and Church Street in Iowa City, just a short walk from the pedestrian mall shopping district and downtown Iowa City.

Why visit The Mustard Seed, Inc. when there are so many online retailers?

At the Mustard Seed, we recognize the power and importance of the internet in spreading the Truth. However, we also firmly believe in the necessity of face-to-face fellowship, and in the movement of the Spirit in our lives through the people we meet. Being able to read a description or browse a few pages online is not always sufficient compared to having the luxury of browsing and reading through books at your leisure in-store. Most importantly, we believe that the concern for the soul of our fellow man strongly influences the personal care and attention we are able to give to our customers with questions, helping them to find items that may fill their needs and nourish their souls in ways they had not anticipated.

After Pentecost, until Advent, the Church ends the liturgical year with celebrations in Ordinary Time.

From Whitsun to Advent, in comparison with the long holiday of Eastertide, one enters a more sober time, though here and there the feasts of Mary, particularly the great feast of the Assumption (once called: our Lady in harvest-time) interrupt it. Again one cannot help but see on these days the perpetual inclination to mark all the feasts of our Lady with some sort of flower ceremony.

Saints' feasts and angels' feasts follow on each other; guardian angels, Michael, prince of angels, and Raphael, are all honored during this time. In parts of England Michaelmas was celebrated as a sort of general sports day in which one man would lead a gang of followers across country, through the roughest ways he could find, a crude symbolism, probably, of Michael leading the host of angels.

If all the angels have their festive day, so too do all the saints, on November 1st. The vigil of this day, once probably given to invoking one's patron saints, turned in later days into a superstitious festivity in which love-charms such as nuts, apples, and glowing embers were credulously invoked and fortunes told, and future lovers seen in vision.

If all the saints have their festive day during these days, so too have all the souls. Theirs is on November 2nd, on which day the bells used to be rung almost unceasingly as a reminder that the members of the Church-family who were yet in prison needed to be rescued. Thus by the first Sunday of Advent, the first day of the liturgical year, there is almost no type of person who has not been celebrated by the Church in one way or another.

(A Candle is Lighted, by P. Stewart Craig)