In his acclaimed two-volume The Story of Christianity, Justo Gonzales writes, “Every renewal of the church, every great age in its history, has been grounded on a renewed reading of history.”
Though few Christians would deny the importance of church history in theory, how many of us do exactly this in practice? And when it comes to our kids, are we communicating to them the value of learning from those who have gone before us?
Intended to introduce children to significant figures in Christian history, Simonetta Carr’s Christian Biographies for Young Readers series (Reformation Trust) is an excellent primer. Her latest volume, Anselm of Canterbury, is the series’ sixth installment (others include Athanasius, Augustine of Hippo, John Calvin, John Owen, and Lady Jane Grey). With historical care and beautiful illustrations, Carr and illustrator Matt Abraxas bring these individuals, their stories, and their significance to life.
Carr was asked Why is church history necessary—even for young kids?
Her answer is spot on:
You can get a fuller answer to this question here, but in a nutshell church history is necessary to help children understand God’s providential hand on his church and on the development and refining of Christian doctrine. With my books I want children to understand their heritage and their ties with Christians of the past, and to appreciate how the church has worked to formulate its doctrines and protect believers from error.
Don’t forget that Midway Baptist will begin a study through Christian history on August 25th. Make plans to join us!