The popular and much-loved Berenstain Bears will be saying their prayers and going to Sunday school in a new faith-focused series to be published by the children's division of Zondervan.
The new series of children's books, authored by Michael Berenstain, will include 12 new titles – with the first four releasing nationwide on Sept. 30. Titles include "The Berenstain Bears and the Golden Rule," "The Berenstain Bears Go to Sunday School," "The Berenstain Bears Say Their Prayers," and "The Berenstain Bears - God Loves You!"
"I'm delighted to join with Zonderkidz in the creation of books designed to serve the needs of families of faith," commented Berenstain in a news release. "Over the years, my parents and I often heard from Christian families how much they appreciate the values-based themes of our books. By dealing with religion through the fun and laughter of the Berenstain Bears, we hope to nurture these families in their goal of raising children secure in their faith."
A 2006 study by the Barna group showed that 43 percent of children made their professions of faith before the age of 13 and that 2 out 3 Christians professed their faith before the age of 18. The study also showed that younger children who call themselves Christians are more likely as adults to describe themselves as deeply spiritual, give more money to the church, and engage in lifestyle evangelism.
"This study shows us why what we're doing at Zonderkidz is so important," Zonderkidz Vice President and Publisher Annette Bourland commented in a news release celebrating Zonderkidz's tenth year of publishing. "Our books and Bibles give children a head start with faith-based resources, so they can be more committed to their faith as adults."
Founded in 1998, Zonderkidz is the leading publisher of children's Bibles and Bible storybooks. It currently has more than 900 titles in print.