Saturday, November 21, 2009

FAITH- Maya Agjmer, Magda Nakassis, Cynthia Pon

Are you familiar with the The Global Fund for Children? They are an organization dedicated to bettering the plight of children and youth around the world through providing grants to organizations working in those areas. They also strive to "promote global understanding through the use of film, photography, and children's books." I've enjoyed many of their books over the past ten years- GLOBAL BABIES is one of my favorite baby shower presents, I also love sharing TO BE A KID with students.

The Global Fund for Children has come out with a new book this year, and it's a stunner. FAITH is a photo essay that captures the essence of different religions around the world. Each two-page spread addresses a different tenet of faith, e.g. we pray, we chant and sing, we read our holy books, we listen to and learn from others, we cleanse ourselves, we visit holy places, we observe holidays in our homes or places of worship, we care for those around us. The text is usually only one sentence; it's the beautiful, beautiful photographs that proclaim, again and again, that though we are all very different, we are also very much alike. On one page, for instance, the text says, "We show our faiths through what we wear…" The photos show six different religions- four little Muslim girls from Turkey, wearing decorative head scarves, an Indonesian boy wearing a songket udeng (a ceremonial headdress), a Mennonite boy dressed in "plain clothes," a Buddhist girl with thanaka face paint, three beautiful Jain girls in ceremonial headdresses before a procession, and Sikh boy wearing a Patka. The authors have included every religion I can think of-- there are photographs of Jews, Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Farsi, Native Americans, Hindus, Jains, and many others.

A map in the back shows the loctions of all of the countries in the book. There are also three or four pages of notes about the elements of faith, as well as an extensive, and very detailed glossary of words to know.

Thank you, Global Fund for Children, for helping us to understand that we are all much more alike than different!

No comments: