The YOUCAT for Kids is the latest offering in the series of books that already includes the YOUCAT catechism for teens and the DOCAT which focuses on the Church’s social teachings. It is designed for children ages 9-13 to read with their parents or catechists.
In the Foreword, Pope Francis states, “Thumbing through the YOUCAT for Kids, I encounter the questions that children ask their parents and catechists millions of times.” He suggests that parents “keep this catechism on hand and find the time to look at it with your children – page by page, mystery of the faith by mystery of the faith, question by question.”
Many Catholic families rely on the traditional St. Joseph Catechism books for religious instruction and sacramental preparation. Those books are a great resource. If you are a more traditional Catholic, this new YOUCAT for Kids might not be for you. But, if you are looking for a more modern version of the Catechism for children that is endorsed by the Catholic Church, this is a book you will want to own.
Like the YOUCAT designed for teens, the YOUCAT for Kids is set up in a question and answer format. At the bottom of each page is additional background for parents or teachers. Key words are defined; relevant quotes are included; and references are made to the YOUCAT in case more information is needed.
All the major tenets of the Catholic faith are covered in these pages. The Introduction focuses on why the world and people exist and how we can come to know God. Part One explores each line of The Apostle’s Creed. Part Two describes each of the seven sacraments. Part Three examines the Ten Commandments. The final section teaches children how to pray.
The YOUCAT for Kids is illustrated with cartoon images, photographs, and reproductions of religious paintings. It is designed to be attractive and appealing to children. While bright and colorful, it presents the truths of the Catholic faith in an age-appropriate manner without watering them down. Parents who are still learning the faith may also learn by going through these questions with their children. It is advised that parents preview the pages that they plan to share with their children so that they can be ready for any questions or conversation that may result.
This catechism helps children gain knowledge of the Catholic faith, but its primary purpose is to help children develop a lifelong relationship with God. This is a great resource for sharing the Catholic faith with your children. Those who homeschool could easily use this as a foundation for their religious education program. Whether you go through it question by question or simply have it on a bookshelf for when questions about the faith come up in conversation, the YOUCAT for Kids is a book you will want in your personal library.