My little baptism gift books

Sally Ann Wright


This is an appealing set to offer as a baptism gift, as it includes three separate books: My little baptism Bible, My little baptism prayers and My little baptism book. The same content is also available as a package named My little christening gift books.

My little baptism Bible offers a wide range of stories well selected from across the Bible, with lovely illustrations and easy-to-read language for children to understand and enjoy.

My little baptism prayers is my favourite of the three books and has a delightful choice of prayers for children to hear and learn as they grow older. There are prayers for when it is time to say sorry, when you need God’s help and strength and prayers of thanks and joy. These are great for a little one who has been newly welcomed into the Church and who could learn some of these by heart.

My little baptism book is essentially a record book to remember key events in a child’s life, such as starting school, their first holiday and, of course, their baptismal day. This book is elegantly produced and would be a wonderful keepsake, but in terms of a baptismal gift I would be concerned that many parents would already have such a book, which may have been given to them on the arrival of their child.

Sam Webster is a mother of two and part-time religious studies teacher in West Sussex.


Mouse and the storm

Susan Quayle, illustrated by Melissa Muldoon


Change is everywhere: starting school; losing teeth; changes at home - all these can have a huge impact on our children, especially those with additional needs. As a mum of three, two of whom have autism spectrum disorder, I am always pleased to find resources that can help me support them through the stress and anxiety that change can bring.

Reflexology is completely unknown to me, so I was interested to learn more about the theory that reflex points in our hands and feet connect to other areas in the body. Unlike many alternative therapies that have a particular faith basis, reflexology is simply based on an understanding of this physical connection. Mouse and the storm incorporates a short reflexology programme, designed to calm anxieties, in a story. Everything was explained very clearly, with easy-to-follow diagrams, though I wish it had come with a glossary to help me find my way through some of the technical terms.

The only struggle was juggling holding the book while reading and massaging the hands of my excited 6-year-old! The first time we read the book through it felt rather clumsy, but we enjoyed learning together and had a happy time practising the techniques on each other’s hands. I didn’t feel calm by the end, but it seemed to have a comforting effect on my daughter, and she liked the detailed illustrations. The story was also a good conversation starter about our own feelings when things change.

Rev Cathy Porter lives in Southwell. She writes about family life and faith at


Unpopular culture

Guvna B


I was sceptical when I heard Guvna B was writing a book; I love his music but would be suspicious of any author calling himself Guvna!

Chapter one won me over instantly as Gunva B shared his account of growing up on a council estate. He unpacks how his early years left him chasing approval and acceptance from the wrong places and it reminded me of so many young men I’ve worked with: “Though only eight years old, early life experience like this life eventually sent me down a path of worthless endeavours. I turned to money, girls, cars and clothes to try and find fulfilment.”

Guvna B meanders through his life, sharing wisely about how he has struggled and overcome the challenges thrown his way, always concluding with Jesus being his driving force and strength. Unpopular culture is refreshingly honest and dispels the myth that mainstage Christian artists and preachers are infallible, while sensitively steering the reader back to Jesus time and time again. Reading through many of the anecdotal stories, it’s clear Guvna B has poured himself into this book. There were moments in the book that felt like a mate telling me a funny story of what happened last week.

Unpopular culture was a very easy and pleasant read which gave me plenty to smile about. I’d push this wonderful book into the hands of young men who don’t know Jesus and are striving to find purpose and meaning, and those who have decided to follow Jesus but need some encouragement on their journey.

Jamie Sewell is The Message Trust’s London leader.


Be loved

Gemma Tuson


This is an interactive and creative six-week course filled with biblical truth that helps engage young girls; sessions include identity, relationships and creativity.

The course aims to build confidence, self-esteem and young people’s relationship with Jesus. Be loved is a great resource to offer young people looking to grow in their Christian walk but can also be used for those who have no faith or have just started their journey.

Be loved comes with a leader’s handbook, which is filled with instructions, and A5 journals for each girl on the course. The journal is amazing! It’s designed so well, with lots of space for the girls to write their own thoughts, colour in, tear things out and stick things in. This makes it personal for each girl and gives them something to take away at the end. You don’t need a degree in youth work or a huge amount of experience to run Be loved, just a willingness to invest in the young girls around you. Just follow the resource and invite Jesus to each session.

One of my girls on the course said: “I love that it looks at topics like being you - but not only does it tell you that you are loved, it gives you ways to put what you’ve learnt about being your true self into action.” Another said: “I love that within the sessions there are real-life testimonies which are really encouraging.”

The course costs £199.99 which does seem like a lot but it’s definitely worth it.

Emma Morris is a youth worker at Frontline Church in Liverpool.


My First Bible

Katherine Sully, illustrated by Simona Sanfilippo


This is a collection of twelve stories, six from the Old Testament and six from the New Testament. The illustrations are wonderful; my toddler was really drawn in, particularly to the animals. The facial expressions invite great ‘how do you think they felt?’ discussions.

After each story there is a ‘next steps’ page with ideas for how to re-read and interact with the story, including actions, joining in with rhymes, counting and making noises. This is brilliant for little ones! A selection of ‘what do you remember?’ questions follows this, which is great for slightly older ones. I could imagine a parent reading it to two siblings, with the younger child doing the interactive activities and the older one answering the questions. These sections are helpful if you want guidance on how to go further than just reading a story.

One of my bugbears is calling a children’s story book a Bible, as there is always so much content missing! However, if you can see this as a storybook then I would recommend it as a fun and beautifully illustrated introduction to a selection of Bible stories for under-5s.

Annie Willmot is national parenting for faith coordinator at the Bible Reading Fellowship and mum to a lively toddler.