BOOK REVIEW: HEAR MY VOICE
I recently had the pleasure of reading a galley copy of Hear My Voice by Jonathan Stampf. In Hear My Voice, Stampf presents us with a children’s translation of Gospel readings for the Catholic Mass for the 2009 liturgical year. The hardcover book is beautifully illustrated by the award – winning, graphic designer Robert Conrad. Rosemarie Duckman, veteran Catholic teacher for 20+ years and a dedicated, retired Catholic elementary school principal, Rosemarie Duckman, edited and reviewed the book.
Hear My Voice effectively conveys to children the message of the gospel, enabling the child to fully and actively participate in the Mass by presenting the entire gospel reading and at the same time providing a clear, simple message in larger type, explaining the gospel to the child in a language that he can easily understand, without speaking down to him. The beautifully colored illustrations and the clear message are sure to attract and hold the child’s attention not only during private study with parents or a teacher, but also during Mass, with all the distractions that ordinarily occur. I was impressed with the words used, which were both descriptive and yet simple enough for the child to comprehend. It is obvious that Stampf knows and understands children well and that an expert has had their hand in the creation of this inspiring spiritual guide for children.
Hear My Voice is a wonderful resource, which will help the child understand the gospel, as well as apply it to his own life. It is a powerful means of opening up the child’s heart and mind to the Word of God. Through it, the child is capable of developing a more intimate, loving relationship with their Savior.
As a young Catholic child, I will never forget my first “Missal” – holding it in my hands at Mass for the first time — made me feel so grown-up and involved in what was going on around me. I think this is the same feeling that your child will have when they have Hear My Voice in their hands. I highly recommend Hear My Voice for your children’s spiritual growth and development.
Hear My Voice is most appropriate for elementary school children and would be useful for private study with parents, as well as in CCD classes. It would make an ideal Christmas gift. For more information, go to http://www.kidsmissal.com/
~ Copyright Jean M. Heimann, November 16, 2008
The author is a freelance writer, retired educator and psychologist, an Oblate with the Community of St. John, and a member of the Catholic Diocese of Wichita, where she is involved with various ministries.