A Book Review from Books At a Glance
By Kristin Stiles
Ask most any child, “What is the Church?” and s/he will point to the building with the steeple on top. Sadly, most adults would probably answer the same way. We have long associated the church with a building, but in her book, So, What is the Church? Carine Mackenzie answers the question right on the cover: “A people belonging to God.”
Mackenzie does a wonderful job of describing the church using kid-friendly language. She restates the main precepts we find in Scripture that define what a church is and what activities should be occurring in the church. She discusses the components of a church service: singing, prayer, Bible reading, preaching, offering, and fellowship. She also explains the sacraments of communion and baptism. She sidesteps the debate regarding how baptism should be done by simply stating that “water is applied.” Parents can certainly explain their church’s stance on how that is interpreted.
Mackenzie also does a stellar job of defining terms and explaining how someone becomes part of the church. I appreciate how much of the gospel is infused in this book. Having grown up in the church myself, I know the danger that exists for children of believing families who sometimes don’t see the need for the gospel to be applied to themselves personally. Although not stated explicitly, I think the message comes through clearly that you don’t become part of the true church just because you regularly visit a building with your family.
This is a well-written book that would be very beneficial to young children. It not only describes the church but also can be a wonderful catalyst to begin a discussion with your child about whether s/he is part of the true church.
Kristin Stiles is a home-school mom, a Sunday School teacher, and helps lead the “Young, Reading, & Reformed” children’s ministry at Reformed Baptist Church of Franconia, PA.
Buy the books
SO, WHAT IS THE CHURCH? A PEOPLE BELONGING TO GOD, by Carine Mackenzie