102. My Big Book of Catholic Bible Stories

My Big Book of Catholic Bible Stories Compiled by Heidi Hess Saxton. Illustrated by Natalie Carabetta. (US) - (Canada) - (Kindle)

Pages: 411 +indexes
Ages: 9+
Finished: Apr. 5, 2012
First Published: 2009
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
Genre: children, Bible, Catholic
Rating: 5/5

First sentence: "In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters." Gen1:1-2

Publisher's Summary: "My Big Book of Catholic Bible Stories is a Catholic family treasure!
With almost 200 stories, this book is an excellent resource for children and families to grow together in their faith and knowledge of Catholic tradition. It uses selections from the actual text of the highly respected and readable New Revised Standard Version, Catholic Edition, including stories from the Deuterocanonical Books.

Along with stories from actual Bible text, My Big Book of Catholic Bible Stories includes additional elements. Each of these elements will help encourage the child to talk to God, to understand the meaning of new words from the passage, to learn quotes from saints and other important figures, and to go deeper in their faith by cross-referencing the CCC and applying the lesson to their lives. With its thorough teaching of Catholic faith, Bible stories, and classic art, this Bible Storybook will be a welcome addition to Catholic homes, schools, and churches.

Acquired: Purchased a new copy from an online retailer..

Reason for Reading: We start our homeschool lessons with God. Including a reading from the Bible.  I had seen this book recommended on a Catholic mum's blog (she no longer blogs, I think) and was utterly taken by her review, so I checked the book out online and purchased it immediately.

I read a "story" to my son every school day and with almost 200 stories, we have been reading the book for about a year.  As is always important to me when using Catholic materials with my son, the book does have a Nihil Obstat & Imprimatur.  The book begins with a letter to children from Mother Teresa and then a 2 page introduction by the compiler explaining how the book is set up.

Each "story" is a two page spread, though the second page just includes the illustration and the extra interactive material.  I should now mention, that though this Bible is divided into "stories" they are not reinterpretations dumbed down for children; Instead what we have are actual passages from the NRSV Catholic text of the Bible, plus the Bible contains stories from the Septuagint, the Holy Canon. 

This is the best Bible Story book I have read aloud to my children ever.  Ds enjoyed our readings from this Bible and it will be a Keeper for our household.  Briefly how a reading is set up.  Each  reading starts with a title followed by the scripture reference where it can be found.  Then there is a blue box of text which introduces the background/people to be read about.  This includes either some instructional material or something to  think about.  Then we have the Bible "story" taken verbatim from the NRSV Catholic text.  This is followed by a prayer, which could be a traditional Catholic prayer, one taken to revolve around the scripture reading or a prayer from a Saint.  On the opposing page is an illustration along with a "Did you know?"  This can range from the definition of an  ancient word in the text, Bible history, modern related information or word origins.  Finally there is a Going Deeper section which includes two activities 1: Read it which directs one to a reading in the CCB and 2) Do it! which has a craft or , charity or thought discussion to perform.  Every now and then between the stories there comes to be the "big" Catholic prayers to be prayed that day: The Apostle's Creed, The Rosary, The Angelis, St. Francis & St. Patrick's prayers, etc.

Another thing I particularly enjoyed were the selections from Revelation.  Usually, childen' story books only include the one scene from Revelation of what the Kingdom of Heaven will look like.  This Bible has five readings taking one simplistically through Revelations main theme.  Highly recommended and as I said above, a Keeper for my shelves.


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