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First Communion Book Recommendations

Book Review by Ann Jonas, Tradebook Buyer - CSB/SJU Bookstores
this review was published in the St. Cloud Visitor

Jesus Speaks to Me On My First Holy Communionby Angela Burrin; illustrated by Maria Cristina Lo Cascio; published by Word Among Us Press, January 2009
This is a very nice gift book for First Communicants. The beginning of the book has a dedication page, along with pages for a photograph and Mass program or invitation. The text is told in Jesus’ voice and begins with “I am Jesus. And I want to say, ‘Happy First Holy Communion Day!’” In twelve stories from Scripture, beginning with Creation and ending with Pentecost, Jesus speaks to children who are receiving him in the Eucharist for the first time. It is colorfully illustrated and includes traditional Catholic prayers and room for more photographs and memories in the back. The book stresses the importance of First Holy Communion and the child receiving the sacrament and is a lovely keepsake of First Communion Day.

God’s Dream by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Douglas Carlton Abrams; illustrated by LeUyen Pham; published by Candlewick Press, August 2008
Archbishop Tutu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 for his lifelong struggle to bring equality, justice and peace to his native country of South Africa. God’s Dream is a lovely picture book for children of all ages that articulates Tutu’s message of forgiveness, empathy and love. The theme of the book, God’s dream that we are all brothers and sisters, “even if we speak different languages or have different ways of talking to God,” is conveyed with clear text and delightful illustrations. The message and beauty of this book make it an enjoyable gift for all occasions.

Prayers for Each and Every Day by Sophie Piper; illustrated by Anne Wilson; published by Paraclete Press, December 2008
Sophie Piper’s collection of prayers, psalms and bible verses has a morning and evening prayer for each day of the week, along with prayers and reflections for special days in the church year. Each day of the week has a theme, including “Choosing the Right Way“, “Living Wisely” and “Love One Another“. Some of the prayers are simplified translations of familiar favorites and others are Piper originals; all are thoughtful and have lively illustrations. Piper is an experienced author/compiler of gift and prayer books and has created a colorful prayer book that would make a great First Communion gift.

Confirmation Book Recommendations