Catechist translates Theology of Body for preschoolers
Caroline Fisher says writing a successful book for Catholic children has helped her to spread a message of true love “too good” to keep to herself.
The northern beaches mother of three who is also a naturopath and wellness speaker said that her picture book, Jesus Had a Body Like Me: A Theology of the Body for Babies and Little Ones, is aimed just as much at those who read it to them.
She’s passionate about sharing with readers both small and great that each of them is a gift, every soul is sacred, and to truly nourish the body one must also nourish the spirit within.
“each of us matters to God and has been ‘fearfully and wonderfully’ made in His image and likeness…”
“God doesn’t make mistakes and each of us matters to God and has been ‘fearfully and wonderfully’ made in His image and likeness for a purpose only we can fulfil and nobody else,” Caroline told The Catholic Weekly.
“If only people knew this and understood the reasons behind what the Catholic Church tells us what to do and what not to do, we would not see the levels of suicide, despair and hopelessness we are seeing in our society.
“Teenagers in particular need to know this, but it’s never too early to connect the dots.”
Illustrated by Kama Towcik, the book is based on the Theology of the Body teachings of St John Paul II and aims at communicating the message of God’s self-sacrificing love to babies and the very youngest of readers.
“It is a call to love and be loved,” says Caroline, as well as an effort to immerse children in what is “good, true and beautiful” in a simple and appealing way.
Jesus Had a Body Like Me also shares the natural joys of experiencing the senses, being made either male or female, and being able to identify in a bodily way with either Jesus or his mother, Mary.
Asked whether she also hoped to counteract confusing messages about sexuality and gender identity that confront young people everywhere from public libraries and classrooms to social and mainstream media, Caroline answered with “a resounding yes”.
“I wanted to define what true love looks like, that it involves a gift of self, of sacrifice. If we can have clarity about what love and the purpose of our body and sexuality is, then we can be much clearer and whole-hearted in our response to love, in loving God and others.”
The book has also been endorsed by Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP (no relation to Caroline).
“This wonderful reality, which we call the ‘Incarnation’, tells the world that the human body matters; that God the Son took on human flesh and that our own bodies carry definite meaning and purpose,” he wrote.
“In a society that often sends mixed and confusing messages about the human person created by God as male and female, Caroline Fisher’s book for young children is most timely.”
Caroline took a leap of faith to produce and publish the book herself and it has paid off with an “amazing response” from friends and people who have found it via Amazon. “The best feedback has been from adults who after reading the book to their child say it helped them in re-discovering their faith,” she said. “And it gives me so much joy to know that a little child engages with my book.”
She already has another Theology of the Body-inspired book in the pipeline, this time for four to eight-year-olds, but is waiting for churches to reopen so she can spend time in Eucharistic Adoration laying her ideas before God.
“That’s part of my process, presenting it to God and then going home and trying to move forward, just trusting that the Holy Spirit will use it somehow. “That is my hope.”