cover image Brother Gabriel Secret of Chri

Brother Gabriel Secret of Chri

Bob Hartman. Augsburg Fortress Publishers, $16.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-8066-3887-4

Sunday School class moves into the family room: in the 10 chapters here, designed to be read in different sittings, Brother Gabriel, an older African-American man, employs his magic felt board and figures to show his students the miracle of Christmas. As he explains biblical passages, felt representations of characters like Mary and Joseph come to life and enhance the experience. Brother Gabriel often extends the lessons with examples from his students' home life, but the treatment of this device is stale. Families may be willing to overlook the contrivances and preachy tone in favor of the welcome participatory elements, including the prayer and discussion questions at the end of each chapter. All ages. (Sept.)