TITLE: The Illustrated Gospel for Children
AUTHOR: Jean-Francois Kieffer
ILLUSTRATOR: Christine Ponsard
PUBLISHED BY: Ignatius Press and Magnificat
I have to say, of all the new titles from Ignatius Press, this is the one that interested me the least. I have mentioned before that comics are not my forte. But I also am naturally inclined to distrust anything that makes the Christian tale cartoonish--and I didn't see how a comic book of the Gospel could be anything but cartoonish.
Boy was I wrong: this retelling of the life of Christ, along with a number of important parables, is wonderful. I had the great pleasure of reading it with the three beautiful daughters of my friend, author and illustrator and comic artist, Ben Hatke, and we had a great time reading it! And the girls--aged 2, 5 and 8, followed along, engaged and attentive. When I read the miracle of the loaves and fishes, A (age 8) couldn't wait to re-tell it to me. Then Z (age 5) jumped in retelling it (more simply, but still correctly). They were so thrilled, and amazed.
The scenes of Christ preaching and telling parables often have little children in it, and the girls zeroed in on these kids instantly, picking which one was their favorite, and imagining they were there with Jesus. As far as I am concerned, that makes this book a winner.
My only complaint, and it is minor, is that in the Crucifixion we only see Christ's back. This is mostly a stylistic choice, and I am not fond of it, but it is a minor thing. Otherwise, I think this is a great adaptation of the Gospel stories, and one that can be enjoyed by children of all ages, and many different reading levels. It will plant the seeds of this great story (the greatest!) in their hearts and imaginations, to unfold later with vibrant faith!
To see the rest of the Ignatius Press newly released series of picture books, please click here.
|Scenes from the early life of Christ.|