When You Were Baptized


ACP Excellence in Publishing Award WINNER in two categories!!!

Baptism welcomes us into a community of faith and prepares us for life in God. Each gift received on the day of our Baptism will grow in meaning and purpose as we grow in faith. Using age-appropriate text and engaging illustrations, When You Were Baptized  invites children to reflect on the signs of the Baptismal rite: water, light, holy oil, God’s Word, and the baptismal garment by connecting them to their place in our daily lives. Each time they read When You Were Baptized, parents and their children can deepen their connection to this beautiful entrance into the community of faith.


Writer Catherine Maresca is founder and director of the Center for Children and Theology in Washington, DC, where she researches the spiritual life of children and prepares resources for children and adults. She has been a catechist in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd for 32 years at Christian Family Montessori School and has been training catechists since 1985.

Illustrator Nathan Röhlander is a fine artist and illustrator whose work has been featured on the cover of Coast Magazine, Esquire, and many other periodicals. Based in South Pasadena, California, Nathan began his career as a scenic artist for the entertainment industry—his art is featured in television shows such as “Modern Family” and “Grey’s Anatomy”; music videos for the bands Counting Crows, Collective Soul, and Lush; and commercials for the Super Bowl, Mountain Dew, Nike, and Lexus.


If you’re looking for a beautiful, informative picture book to help your young children understand more about the symbolism, character, and rite of Baptism, check out When You Were Baptized. . .
My little children were immediately captivated by this beautifully illustrated picture book which speaks directly to the child. . . This book with its simple explanations and overarching tone of welcoming the child into God’s family is true to the Catechesis [of the Good Shepherd] vision.
This lovely picture book would be a wonderful gift for a godparent to give at a Baptism, or even to commemorate the Baptismal day of an older child. It also makes a wonderful addition to any Catholic family’s picture book library. . . [It is] a much needed resource to reach families during what is often a “void” in faith formation and participation in the Church—those years between their child’s Baptism and sacrament prep for Reconciliation and First Holy Communion.
-Brittany Inzeo
Catholic Books Reviews and Book Lists


Reading When You Were Baptized together as a family is a simple yet meaningful way to help young children understand that they are loved, they are called by name, and they are an important part of God’s family. It is a story families can revisit as their child grows in understanding of God’s love and of belonging to a community of faith.
Through the beautiful art and child-friendly language, When You Were Baptized explains the words, actions, and symbols of Baptism in ways that relate to the child’s everyday experiences. The child is able to begin to understand the mysteries of God’s grace through the sacraments and to see the sacred in the ordinary.
As a DRE who works with children in kindergarten, first, and second grades, I would recommend also using this book in the RE classroom as a way to supplement lessons about Baptism and sacramental symbols.
-Cathy Gilooly
Director of Religious Education
St. Anne Catholic Church, Oswego, IL


Catherine Maresca has given families a true gift with this lovely book. For years I have taught the lessons of Baptism in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd atrium. I am delighted that there is now a book that can help parents understand more fully how amazing the Sacrament of Baptism is. Whether parents are preparing to baptize a child or remember the day they did, this beautiful book captures the intimate experience of this sacrament.
-Christine Ondrla
Director of Religious Education (Retired) and grandmother of eight grandchildren
Ascension Parish, Oak Park, IL


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