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Our favorite Catholic books for kids from 2023

Young girl reading book

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Theresa Civantos Barber - published on 11/23/23

Catholic children’s books have become ever more beautifully illustrated and well written, with a wealth of wonderful faith-building stories.
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As a mom of four who reads children’s books every day, it has been a delight to follow Catholic publishing in recent years. 

Far from the rather cheesy options I remember from my childhood, Catholic children’s books have become ever more beautifully illustrated and well written, bringing a wealth of wonderful faith-building stories to Catholic families. 

I had a hard time narrowing down this list, but here are my picks for favorite Catholic kids’ books published in the past year. You’ll want to add these to your Catholic school libraries and family bookshelves!

Picture Books

A Garden for Mary

A Garden for Mary is a lyrical children’s story about devotion to Jesus’s mother through prayer and Scripture. Favorite features include the classic watercolors and illustrated appendix of flowers associated with Our Lady.

All about Advent & Christmas: Sharing the Seasons of Hope & Wonder with Children

All about Advent & Christmas: Sharing the Seasons of Hope & Wonder with Children explains the traditions surrounding Christ’s birth in a way that’s easy for kids to understand. The story of salvation, the saints, and Christ’s birth come alive in this delightful and colorful book, which kids of all ages and their parents will love.

Bless the Lord

Introduce children to the beauty of praying Scripture through the words of this song featured in the ancient Liturgy of the Hours. The charming illustrations will help young children engage in worship and encounter the goodness of God’s creation.

Faustina: A Saint’s Story for Children

Vivid artwork and charming rhymes share with children the story of St. Faustina and the message of Divine Mercy.

Go and Fear Nothing: The Story of Our Lady of Champion

Did you know there is a Church-approved Marian apparition site in the United States? People from all over the world visit the National Shrine of Our Lady of Champion, where Our Lady appeared in 1859 in Champion, Wisconsin. Go and Fear Nothing introduces children to this incredible real-life story and shares Our Lady’s all-important message.

Jesus in Space: A True Story That’s Out of This World

When Astronaut Tom Jones left the earth, he took Jesus in the Holy Eucharist with him! Buckle up for this true story of a space adventure and learn how faith and science worked together in the life of one brave astronaut, who included a letter to children in Jesus in Space.

Mary, Mother of All

Bestselling authors Scott Hahn and Emily Stimpson Chapman worked together to tell this story of Our Lady’s role in salvation to children, sharing her great love for us all.

Meet Sister Mary Margaret

What is it like to be a religious sister? Meet Sister Mary Margaret answers the questions that children ask, from “Why do you wear that?” to “What do you do all day?” and more. This book shares the important role of women religious in the Church and the world.

One Holy Marriage: The Story of Louis and Zélie Martin

This absolutely unforgettable book tells the story of the first married saints in history to be canonized together. Share with children the beauty of the Sacrament of Marriage through the quiet, virtuous lives of Sts. Louis and Zélie Martin in One Holy Marriage.

Our Lady of Guadalupe and Her Dear Juanito

Discover the true story of St. Juan Diego’s conversations with Mary, our Mother, and the evidence of her loving presence that she left behind. This charming book includes prayers and an illustrated guide to the symbols on the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

The Supper of the Lamb

Another gem from Scott Hahn and Emily Stimpson Chapman, The Supper of the Lamb introduces children to the biblical roots and layers of meaning in the Holy Mass. The book lays out how God’s plan, from creation to the Incarnation, leads to the Mass, and invites readers to partake in the Lamb’s Supper where heaven and earth meet.

Through the Year with Tomie dePaola

Through the Year with Tomie dePaola is a treasure to be read at feast days and holidays all year round. This book brings together the best of Tomie dePaola’s Art Mail, charming illustrations he sent to family and friends. Each image is accompanied by short passages about the saint or the holy day it represents. 

Twas The Day Before Christmas In Bethlehem Town

This heartwarming, read-aloud Nativity story brings 1st-century Bethlehem to life through rhythm and rhyme inspired by the classic Christmas poem, “A Visit from St. Nicholas.”

Chapter Books

Detective Thomas and the Biggest Question

Thomas is a middle-school boy who loves to solve mysteries, and his biggest mystery comes in a search for answers about his faith in God. Read our review here of this fun, engaging, can’t-put-it-down book that’s destined to be a lasting classic for Catholic kids. 

The Hound of the Lord

The Hound of the Lord tells the story of St. Dominic through the eyes of his dog Torch. This book vividly describes the founder of the Dominican Order and the challenges he overcame while preaching the Gospel throughout medieval Europe.

My Family and Other Skaters

Enjoy this real-life story of a Catholic family living in modern-day England. With six children — all competitive figure skaters — and a pet alpaca, there’s never a dull moment and the family faces joys and challenges together while growing in patience and understanding. 

The Adventures of Loupio Volume 7: The Fire and Other Stories

My kids can’t get enough of this entertaining Catholic comic book series about a young boy who travels through Italy with St. Francis of Assisi! In this volume, he meets St. Clare of Assisi and helps young readers learn lessons of faith.

The Strange Sound by the Sea

The sleuthing mice of Saint Wulfhilda’s Abbey School are back for a seaside adventure in this third installment of The Sister Seraphina Mysteries! My family greatly enjoys this delightful series and you can read our review and author interview here

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