Lorelei Savaryn highly recommends The Jesse Tree for Families as a wonderful new way to practice the Jesse Tree tradition.
I am very excited to utilize the new Jesse Tree for Families book by Colleen Pressprich with our family this Advent!
We have tried to do a Jesse Tree a couple of times over the past few years, but it’s been difficult to find something that is accessible to all four of our kids at their different ages and stages. The Jesse Tree for Families by Colleen Pressprich was written with the intent to be a fit for even the youngest family members, while also having enough substance to nurture older kids (and parents as well!).
Each day has a beautiful, vibrant illustration of the person or name being featured, followed by a brief, accessible reading to share with the kids. A more detailed section for parents follows, and each entry concludes with conversation starters to guide family discussion.
The first sixteen days in December focus on different people in Jesus’ family tree. The entries during this section read like a beautiful story book, and they also contain Biblical references where people can go to learn more. From December 17th until Christmas Eve, the entries focus on different names of Jesus. The conversation starters in this latter section echo the style of Lectio Divina, and they give kids a wonderful entry point into meditating on Scripture.
The jacket of the book also contains smaller versions of the illustrations in the book that families can cut out and use as their own Jesse Tree keepsake ornaments, which is a very nice touch that gives families something tangible to do each day in addition to the readings and discussion. It’s also a nice way to build up to Christmas, by visually building up the story that leads us to Christ and keeping the Jesse Tree present in everyone’s minds.
If you’re looking to start a new tradition this Advent, or are looking for a Jesse Tree resource that will work with children at all different ages (and even spur moms and dads to learn more too), this is a wonderful new book that I hope many families will enjoy during Advent this year and beyond.
Copyright 2023 Lorelei Savaryn
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About the Author
Lorelei Savaryn joyfully joined the Catholic Church in 2016 after many years as a Protestant. She lives outside Chicago with her husband, four children, and dog named Saint. She writes about her faith and family life on ThisCatholicFamily.com. She is also a children's author. Her debut novel, The Circus of Stolen Dreams, released in Sept 2020 from Penguin Random House/Philomel.