This past fall I was contacted by an editor at Ancient Faith Publishing to see if I'd like to do a review on the brand new "A Child's Guide to the Divine Liturgy". I was very pleased to receive my free copy before Christmas and equally delighted to immediately order one to give as a present to my youngest godson! This is a beautiful publication that should be put into the hands of young Orthodox children! Title: A Child's Guide to the Divine Liturgy
Author: Ancient Faith Publishing
Illustrator: Megan Elizabeth Gilbert
Genre: Children's Book, Orthodox
Why Did I Choose It? As I stated above, I was contacted by an editor to see if I'd like to do a review here on the blog. I was delighted but am certain that seeing there was a book out there on the Divine Liturgy for children would have been enough to entice me to purchase it. There is a great need for children to have books available to them to teach them about their faith.
A Bit From The Back Cover: We wish you, and all the children of the Orthodox faith, continual growth toward Christ as we all seek to be lights to the world, and as we help each other toward the Kingdom of Heaven!
My Review: This pocket-sized book serves the Orthodox child as a toddler with it's colorful pictures and yet grows with the child, offering more at various stages.
The book is divided into 6 color coded sections and includes illustrations, prayers, the Nicene Creed, quotes, and psalms and even vocabulary terms that the older child can read and use as a reference. The illustrations are beautifully detailed though they could have stood to be a little larger for the younger child's eye. The text itself is minimum, as it serves to guide a child through the liturgy but not take the place of paying attention to the service. There are actually two 'words' sections- the first being an illustrated, simple 'words to know' section that is ideal for toddlers and early readers, the second being a glossary that would be a nice reference for an older child. I especially like the section on the feast days with the troparians and my son, age 4, says his favorite is the pictures (illustrations) of the angels for the Trisagion Prayer.
Teaching children about our faith is not a trivial task. Great care must be taken to do so. This book offers a wonderful guide to be used during the church service and a wonderful tool to use at home to talk about the service and engage in conversations with your child (or godchild or grandchild) to elaborate in more detail about what he or she sees within the surroundings of the church. This book fits quite snuggly into my little one's 'church bag' that contains all of the things he's allowed to look at or 'fidgit' with during services. It's a very nice addition. I highly recommend you make it an important piece of the religious education of the important child in your life.