Oh, Dearest Mother, Sweetest Virgin of Altagracia, our Patroness. You are our Advocate and to you we recommend our needs. You are our Teacher and like disciples we come to learn from the example of your holy life. You are our Mother, and like children, we come to offer you all of the love of our hearts. Receive, dearest Mother, our offerings and listen attentively to our supplications. Amen.



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Mary G
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Posted: March 14 2005 at 6:40am | IP Logged Quote Mary G

Hey y'all just thought I'd start this topic:

recommendations for good picture books for Holy Week and Easter?

we're using:
     The Story of the Cross: The Stations of the Cross for Children by Mary Joslin (illus by Gail Newey. The pictures are wonderful -- showing the sorrow and agony without making it too graphic for the little ones
     Petook: An Easter Story by Caryll Houselander (illus by Tomie dePaola) -- this story is also in the More Catholic Stories for Boys and Girls. The pictures by dePaola really make my kids like this one


Any other suggestions?

Blessings,

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Mary G
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Posted: March 14 2005 at 6:41am | IP Logged Quote Mary G

Oops forgot -- we're also using Inos Biffi's An Introduction to the Liturgical Year which has worked in well with the last 3 Sunday readings and it's got it's own seciton on Holy Week.

Blessings

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Posted: March 14 2005 at 7:06am | IP Logged Quote Elizabeth

Here's a reprint of a column; no time right now to go back in and make italics, etc.

As we journey together as a family through Lent towards Easter, our trusty book basket is overflowing with stories that bring the season to life. First, are two picture books begun the first week of Lent and left unfinished. They are The Easter Story by Brian Wildsmith and The Easter Story by Gennady Spirin. Both are beautifully illustrated in different styles and with both, we’ll stop with the crucifixion and save the rest of the story for Easter.
     Other Lenten books include Benjamin’s Box, by Melody Carlson, the story of a young boy who follows Jesus through Jerusalem and collects mementos along the way. “Resurrection Eggs” are plastic eggs filled with the mementos from the story that really captivate young readers. One caveat is a reference towards the end of the story to the Eucharist as “symbolic.” I use that to point up differences between our belief in the Real Presence and the belief of the Protestant author. In The Tale of Three Trees by Angela Ellwell Hunt, three trees have plans of worldly grandeur; instead they become the crib in which the infant Jesus slept, the boat in which He performed a miracle, and the cross on which He died. Alternatively, The Legend of the Three Trees by Catherine McCafferty presents a different version of the tale, a version that is available in a beautifully done video.
     Two feasts which occur during Lent are represented in the book basket as well. On St. Patrick’s day, we like to read Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland by Tomie de Paola. A new one (for us) this year is St. Patrick’s Summer by Marigold Hunt. It’s out of print but several used copies are available out there for those who enjoy the hunt. For St. Joseph’s feast, on March 19th, we like to revisit Song of the Swallows by Leo Politi. It is the story of the swallows of San Juan Capistrano who always migrate back to the Mission on St. Joseph’s Day.
     A beautiful book for Holy Week is The Way of the Cross: Holy Week, The Stations of the Cross and the Resurrection by Inos Biffi. This book is also out of print and not readily available, so if you find one (and you can afford it) count yourself very blessed.
     Petook: An Easter Story was written by one of my favorite authors, Caryll Houselander and illustrated by our favorite children’s storyteller, Tomie de Paola. It tells the story of Petook, a rooster whose brood is ruffled by a young boy in Jerusalem. Although he is concerned at first, the rooster learns that the boy is very kind. Many years later, the same boy, now grown, is crucified on a hill near Petook’s home. The story is a beautifully crafted tale of life, death and new life.
      My older children will spend Lent doing an in-depth study of the Easter Vigil that was shared with me by my dear friend, Alice Gunther. During the study, we’ll learn all the rich paschal symbolism of the liturgy. My little ones will spend some time with A Peek Into My Church by Wendy Goody and Veronica Kelly. We’ll take our time poking through this book, absorbing all the richness of the Catholic Church. Since we “go to church” ordinarily in a school gym, the Vigil study and the study of traditional churches will make a visit to the Basilica for the Easter Vigil especially meaningful.
During Easter week, we’ll enjoy decorating eggs with the Easter symbols we’ve learned and we’ll read Rechenka’s Eggs by Patricia Polacco. The story is delightful and the illustrations brightly depict the beauty of Ukranian Easter Eggs.
The path from Lent towards Easter can be a long one and often it is easy to lose our focus. It our calling as mothers in the heart of the domestic church to take some time to prepare our hearts, our homes and our families in a meaningful way to participate fully in the glorious celebration of the Lord’s Resurrection. One way to do that is to bring beautiful books into the lives of your family, books that become treasures and traditions of the season for yours to come.


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JennGM
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Posted: March 15 2005 at 11:59am | IP Logged Quote JennGM

I just received part of my Easter book order. Petook was one of the books! It looks GREAT.

But I also received a book not on Elizabeth's list that I want to HIGHLY recommend. It's called The Jesus Garden: An Easter Legend by Anoinette Bosco, printed by Pauline Books and Media. This is just beautifully illustrated. The story brings together the legends of the dogwood, robin redbreast, bleeding hearts and morning glory.

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Posted: March 15 2005 at 3:31pm | IP Logged Quote Kathryn UK

Mary G. wrote:
The Story of the Cross: The Stations of the Cross for Children by Mary Joslin (illus by Gail Newey. The pictures are wonderful -- showing the sorrow and agony without making it too graphic for the little ones


I'll second this one. I found it on a Church bookstall last week and bought it. We have been studying the Stations of the Cross during Lent, using The Way of the Cross by Inos Biffi. It was a little over the head of my 6yo, but the Story of the Cross is just right for her and the two books fit together beautifully. We have copied the prayers for each station to go alongside pictures we printed out in the liturgical year folders we are making.

After Easter, we will be reading Michael Hague's Easter Treasury. It has a mix of religious and non-religious stories, poems, hymns and so on, all nicely illustrated.

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Posted: Jan 26 2010 at 3:17pm | IP Logged Quote SeaStar

Easter book with activity
Ukranian egg books
Sunrise Hill

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Posted: Jan 26 2010 at 6:09pm | IP Logged Quote SeaStar

The Tale of Three Trees

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Posted: Jan 27 2010 at 12:15am | IP Logged Quote Chris V

SeaStar wrote:
The Tale of Three Trees


We love this book! It's a year-round favorite here.


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Posted: Feb 09 2010 at 11:05am | IP Logged Quote MicheleQ

Elizabeth wrote:
A beautiful book for Holy Week is The Way of the Cross: Holy Week, The Stations of the Cross and the Resurrection by Inos Biffi. This book is also out of print and not readily available, so if you find one (and you can afford it) count yourself very blessed.


Until now that is. I have been able to secure 30 NEW copies and make them available on my website. This is a BEAUTIFUL book for Lent!

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Posted: Feb 09 2010 at 12:10pm | IP Logged Quote stefoodie

MicheleQ wrote:

Until now that is. I have been able to secure 30 NEW copies and make them available on my website. This is a BEAUTIFUL book for Lent!


We have this book and love it (thanks to the suggestions here)!    that you're carrying this, Michele! Will you be carrying other Inos Biffi books as well?

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Posted: Feb 09 2010 at 1:54pm | IP Logged Quote MicheleQ

stefoodie wrote:
Will you be carrying other Inos Biffi books as well?


Well I already do carry The Way to Bethlehem, Introduction to the Liturgical Year and The Life of Mary.

The only one missing (that I hope to add soon) is An Illustrated Catechism which is actually a compilation of four Biffi books; The Apostle's Creed, The Sacraments, The Ten Commandments and Prayer --all of which are no longer in print separately.

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Posted: Feb 09 2010 at 2:44pm | IP Logged Quote stellamaris

Be sure to let us know if you add this, Michele!



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Posted: Feb 09 2010 at 3:38pm | IP Logged Quote Mary G

MicheleQ wrote:
stefoodie wrote:
Will you be carrying other Inos Biffi books as well?


Well I already do carry The Way to Bethlehem, Introduction to the Liturgical Year and The Life of Mary.

The only one missing (that I hope to add soon) is An Illustrated Catechism which is actually a compilation of four Biffi books; The Apostle's Creed, The Sacraments, The Ten Commandments and Prayer --all of which are no longer in print separately.
WooHoo Family-Centered for having these available ... they are some of the best ... you remind me I need to get my copy of the Commandments back from a fellow-homeschoolers -- I'll steer her to you to buy her own!

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Posted: March 24 2010 at 2:40pm | IP Logged Quote SeaStar

The Legend of the Easter Egg

Lori Walburg

This book is from Zonderkidz, and we enjoyed the story. The devotion of a little boy to his sister is played out over Holy Week and Easter.
If you liked The Legend of the Candy Cane, you will probably like this one.

As a side note, I find Easter books to be very tricky.... so many are just a lot of Easter Bunny nonsense. Then there are many good ones that focus just on Holy Week and the Resurrection. Not a lot in between...

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Posted: March 10 2012 at 12:26am | IP Logged Quote MaryM

Bumping for our every few years look at Easter picture books - I know there is mention of [icture books in some general Easter/Lent threads as well.


Simon and the Easter Miracle

Just got this one from the library. Saw it on Amazon a few months ago - newly published and requested that our library get it. I was intrigued by the Amazon summary which talked about it being based on a Polish foltale about Simon of Cyrene and the origin of Easter eggs.   

I haven't been able to verify that there is actually a Polish legend regarding this - mostly just find it as legend, no specific origin. The one I find more often with the claim of being a Polish legend is Mary's basket of eggs at the foot of the cross.

A listing of Easter egg legends indicates some of the legends associated with colored Easter eggs. Some refer to Pisanka and mention being polish on the site I found them.
~A legend relates that the Blessed Virgin prepared colored eggs and took them in a basket to Pontius Pilate to plead for her son's life. When Pilate refused, Mary began to weep. Her tears fell on the eggs, making beautiful patterns of dots. Dots are still used on pisanki to represent Mary's tears.
~One tells of Mary painting hard-boiled eggs red, yellow and green to entertain the Baby Jesus. Because of this story, Polish women have always made pisanki.
~Mary Magdalene took a basket of eggs to the Sepulchre, intending to eat them after anointing the body of Our Lord. When she arrived at the tomb, so the legend goes, it was empty, and the eggs were miraculously turned into pisanki.
~One story recounts Mary Magdalene being summoned by Emperor Tiberius and stating that Christ had been resurrected. The skeptical Caesar pointed to an egg and exclaimed, "Christ has not risen, no more than that egg is red"—after which the egg in question miraculously turned blood-red.
~Either Mary Magdalene or Mary, the mother of Jesus, placing a basket of eggs under the cross, with Christ's blood falling on the eggs, turning them red.

~The one about Simon of Cyrene says he was a farmer who had come to town and had to leave his basket of eggs to help Jesus carry the cross. Upon returning he found that his eggs had changed color.

In Mary Joslin's book, that story about the changing color is what you would expect, but this "traditional tale for Easter" has a different ending with the eggs breaking after he returns home and findng them empty - but finding doves in the fields later. The dialogue between Simon and Jesus is obviously conjecture because we have no scriptural account, but it seems interesting - he states he is being cruficied for "Preaching a message of peace." And there is nothing in the book about the legend - no author's notes.

Overall it is a cute read. Definitely covers a part of the passion not covered by another picture book that I know of. Still I don't give it a 100% recommendation for the reasons mentioned above.

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Posted: March 12 2012 at 10:32am | IP Logged Quote JennGM

Thanks, Mary, for the review. The Amazon reviews says the book falls short in presenting Jesus as Son of God and redemption, which is frustrating. My favorite legend of the pysanky is that Simon of Cyrene's basket of eggs changed to pysanky after helping Jesus carry his cross. I haven't heard this version of the legend.

My library doesn't carry it... What is the deal with the illustrations as of late for these religious books. They are not that great. Okay, but not great.

I find that our Lenten and Easter book selections are just middling to fair. Except for a few, there are none that make as much of an impression as some of our Christmas books.

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Posted: March 12 2012 at 2:19pm | IP Logged Quote Erin

Just splurged this Lent and ordered a few new titles, they are slowly trickling in.
The Thornbush
On That Easter Morning
Easter Story - Gennady Spirin
Easter Swallows
Introduction to the Liturgical Year
The Easter Swallows is the only one I've read thus far and it is lovely. Although I note it is recommend for a 3year old, I would say rather ambitious for a restless 3yr old as there is a bit of text, not lots but not simple.

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Posted: March 12 2012 at 3:22pm | IP Logged Quote stellamaris

Anyone read this one? The Story of the Easter Robin



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Posted: March 12 2012 at 4:32pm | IP Logged Quote JennGM

stellamaris wrote:
Anyone read this one? The Story of the Easter Robin



No, I haven't, but I had just requested it this morning.

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Posted: March 12 2012 at 5:20pm | IP Logged Quote MaryM

JennGM wrote:
stellamaris wrote:
Anyone read this one? The Story of the Easter Robin



No, I haven't, but I had just requested it this morning.


Yes, I have. It's from the same Zonderkids "series" as the Christmas ones like The Legend of the Candy Cane and The Gift of the Christmas Cookie. It follows the same sort of style and formula so that should give you an idea. I do like the legend of the robin getting his red breast from the drops of blood when he tried to remove the thorns from Jesus' head. This is a nice exposure to that story. BTW - that is only one legend as there is a Christmas legend too about his breast getting singed while fanning the fire to keep the Holy Family warm. And there is a Flight into Egypt legend as well.

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