Alessandro is staying with his grandparents, who run a small shop that sells figures for the presepe (Nativity scene), while his parents look for work in another country. To help with the boy’s loneliness, his grandfather encourages Alessandro to make his own figure of the baby Jesus. They will bring that figure to Rome in two weeks to have it blessed by the Holy Father on Bambinelli Sunday. Through the events that occur in the time leading up to receiving the blessing in St. Peter’s Square, Alessandro comes to see his world in a new way, and receives the best surprise of all in the end.
This book for children ages 7-10 tells a wonderful story about sharing, comfort, generosity, and forgiveness through the lens of a long-standing Italian tradition. The beautiful illustrations and timeless story make this a treasure Advent and Christmas resource for generations to come.
Amy Welborn is the author of many books on spirituality, catechesis and apologetics. She has been published in The New York Times, First Things and Commonweal. She is a regular contributor to the Living Faith quarterly devotional. Her books for children include The Loyola Kids’ Book of Saints, Friendship with Jesus, Be Saints! and A Child’s Book of Psalms. Her most recent book is the memoir, Wish You Were Here: Travels Through Loss and Hope.
Ann Kissane Engelhart is a watercolor artist, illustrator and educator. She has worked with Amy Welborn to produce the children’s books, Friendship with Jesus and Be Saints!, and The Dirt Maker with author Linda Krisch. Her portraits, still-life and landscape paintings are featured in galleries and private collections. She lives in New York with her husband and children.