The Glory of Grace: The Story of the Canons of Dort, William Boekestein, illustrated by Evan Hughes (Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage Books, 2012). Hardcover, 32 pages, $10.00
If William Boekestein were a hockey player, we’d say that he scored a hat trick – with assists from Evan Hughes on each goal. He first scored with Faithfulness Under Fire, his 2010 children’s book about Guido de Bres and the Belgic Confession. He followed up last year with The Quest for Comfort: The Story of the Heidelberg Catechism. Some had expressed the hope that he would come through with something on the Canons of Dort and now we have it!
For those who still don’t know this author, William Boekestein is the pastor of the Covenant Reformed Church (URCNA) in Carbondale, Pennsylvania. He’s a graduate of Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids and a former Christian school teacher. He’s also a father of three children – children who love to hear stories. They’re blessed with a dad who has a gift for telling them.
Who would have thought it possible to tell the story of the Canons of Dort in such a way that it can be learned and appreciated by children? Boekestein pulls it off. He writes clearly and simply, avoiding sophisticated theological jargon. I would think that many Christian parents might even come to a better grasp of the doctrines of grace through this little book. Now, having said that, I do think that the doctrines of grace (TULIP, five points) are, by nature, more advanced. Therefore, this book would likely best be used with older children, perhaps 10-12 year olds.
The illustrator, Evan Hughes, is a professional graphic designer. His illustrations have a unique style and they add character to the book. The drawings are bold, colourful, not too weighed down with detail, and yet historically accurate.
As with the other two books, this one definitely should be on the wish list of church history teachers and home educators. If we’re going to effectively teach our children what we believe as Reformed churches, knowing the history is a must. William Boekestein, Evan Hughes, and Reformation Heritage Books have done us a service in giving us three great books about the Three Forms of Unity and their history.