Paul Maier’s Martin Luther: A Man Who Changed the World

Some Lutheran friends who attend our church gave me this wonderful little children’s biography of Martin Luther a couple of weeks ago.  It’s little in terms of pages, but it’s actually an oversized coffee-table type book with tremendous illustrations by artist Greg Copeland.  After reading it through I gave it the ultimate test by having my 10-year-old daughter read it through and then answer a few questions I posed to her.  After hearing her say, “Saint Anne, help me!  I will become a monk!”, I was convinced that this book is, in fact, a very effective tool for introducing children to Luther.

There are qualms, of course, as there are bound to be with any brief work that treats such a large topic.  For instance, I regret Maier’s observation that the clergy of Luther’s day were corrupt.  To be sure, there was widespread corruption, but the implication that all the clergy were wicked is unfortunate and could have been remedied by adding the words “many of the” before the word “clergy.”

That being said, how exactly is one to avoid oversimplification with a book like this?

All in all, a tremendous work and a great way to introduce kids to Reformation history.

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