KOLKATA, (C.M. Paul) – Archbishop Thomas D’Souza of Kolkata yesterday (22 April) received a copy of the much talked about book for first communion catechesis at a gathering for Young Christian Students at the archbishops house. Senior-most YCS animator in Kolkata from 1970s Salesian Fr K.K. Antony of Don Bosco School Liluah, presented the book to archbishop.
Brought out by director of Tej Prasarani publications Matunga, Salesian Fr Joaquim Fernandes and his team the book has 120 full colour pages filled with illustrations laced with crisp and racy narration of the life of Jesus for children. The artwork, all original painting for this book has been painted by a Hindu artist Mr Ganesh Sonsurkar while Mr Kevin Jairaj did the intrinsic designing and the layouts.
Entitled JESUS the prince of peace, “the hardcover oversized book is intended to sit on a coffee table or similar surface in an area where the family members sit and guests are entertained,” says Fr. Fernandes.
Though the opening inner page of the book has a dedication to the proud owner of the book (the first communicant), “the book is a sure fire to inspire conversation or alleviating boredom while acting as an occasional catechist,” Fr Fernandes assures.
He added, “any one who loves and cherishes his or her Catholic faith will be proud to own a copy of the book and be inspired by it.”
An Easter 2012 release, the book contains besides the life of Jesus, new revised prayers at Mass, illustration of the parts of the Holy Rosary as well as the four mysteries, with phrase by phrase illustration for the Hail Mary.
Other prayers illustrated in the book include the sign of the cross; Hail, holy Queen; short acts of faith, hope, charity and contrition; as well as a short grace before and after meals.
The daily prayers of angelus or regina caeli follows with detailed question answer description of each of the seven sacraments, with the seven steps to make confession.
Among the section on pious Catholic practices are listed and illustrated all 14 stations of the cross in one single page making it ideal for making a quick way of the cross in your sitting room.
The ten commandments are followed by the five forms of prayer, five precepts of the Church, seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, seven corporal works of mercy, seven spiritual works of mercy and the twelve fruits of the holy Spirit and concludes with the eight beatitudes of Jesus.
The song section features 19 most popular Biblical action songs for kids, followed by an overview of the Church year (liturgical calendar) explaining through graphic illustration the liturgical cycle.
The pictorial book concludes with a two page advertisement for two CDs of action songs for children: Power to the children (20 songs) and Walking with Jesus containing 23 action songs for children to play and pray.
The opening pages of the book carry endorsements by the president of the catholic Bishops Conference of India cardinal Oswald Gracious archbishop of Mumbai, chairman of CBCI Office of Social Communications Bishop Chacko Thottumurickal SVD and director of diocesan Catechetical Centre Mumbai Fr Terence Murray.
Plans for other language editions of the book are under study.