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A-BA-BA-HA-LA-MA-HA Publishers presented “The Children’s Gospel” (Stories about Jesus) in the premises of the Writers’ Union of Ukraine

Oct 05, 2009, covered by “The Ukrainian Truth” and other periodicals
The Archimandrite Kyrylo, the Bishop Yevstratiy (Zorya), Ivan Malkovych,
the Bishop Yosyp and Kost’ Lavro during the presentation

The participants of the presentation were:

Bishop Yevstratiy (Zoria), the Vasylkiv city Bishop, head of the Information and Publishing Department of the Kyiv Patriarchate (UOC-KP)
Archimandrite Kyrylo (Hovorun), the head of the Department for External Church Relations (UOC-MP)
Bishop Yosyp (Milyan), an Auxillary Bishop of the Kyiv archdiocese of UGCC
Kost’ Lavro, the main artist of A-BA-BA-HA-LA-MA-HA Publishers
Ivan Malkovych, a poet, the head of A-BA-BA-HA-LA-MA-HA Publishers

“The biggest traditional Christian churches of Ukraine finally found a common language,” — “The Ukrainian Truth” writes.

On Monday the premises of the Writers’ Union of Ukraine hosted a really important, if not unique, event: A-BA-BA-HA-LA-MA-HA Publishers presented “The Children’s Gospel. Stories about Jesus.” (the stories were selected and edited by Ivan Malkovych in collaboration with bishops and priests of the biggest traditional Christian churches of Ukraine.)

This book is unique because this is the first edition of the Gospel that was blessed by the Primates of all biggest traditional Christian churches of Ukraine: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv and Moscow Patriarchates, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and back in 1992 our first edition of the Children’s Gospel (way too “humble” polygraphically and artistically than the present edition) was blessed by the Patriarch Mstyslav of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church.


“It was extremely easy and inspiring to work with the bishops and priests of all churches. They contributed to the book’s becoming most perfect as far as the text itself is concerned. Unexpectedly some of them turned out to be really avid readers. This younger generation of our priests and bishops is special – they know The Holy Scripture in Ukrainian, in Ancient Slavonic, in Greek, in English… All of them expressed deep understanding or the role and place of the Single Ukrainian Orthodox Church. This gives us big hope. I am extremely grateful to them for this unforgettable cooperation. After all, it is vitally important that Ukrainian children read this Book without any divisions to religious confessions, for it mostly depends on our today’s young readers how early the Single Ukrainian Orthodox Church will emerges in Ukraine, the cradle of Christianity of Central and Eastern Europe. This relatively compact book presents the most important acts and commands of Jesus Christ. We made our best for this edition to address children in an exquisite language and with highly artistic illustrations, made by contemporary artists in the style of traditional iconography and folk wooden sculpture. We sincerely hope that “The Children’s Gospel” will be affordable and adored by young readers all over Ukraine – West to East, North to South,” Ivan Malkovych said, sharing his hopes and feelings.

“Until nowadays Ukraine has not seen such a perfect children’s bible book,” Bishop Yevstratiy (Zoria) of UOC KP said. “Once my way to Church was mostly determined, maybe, when I happened to get a very beautiful and vivid “Children’s Bible”; thus I sincerely hope that this “Children’s Gospel” will also open the Christ’s door to many. It is really good that the initiative of Ivan Malkovych gathered the main Christian churches of Ukraine in their blessing. I believe that little readers of this book will pray in the Single Ukrainian Orthodox Church.”


Archimandrite Kyrylo (Hovorun), the head of the Department for External Church Relations (UOC-MP), also agreed with his colleague: “In fact, the publication of this “Children’s Gospel”, blessed by Patriarchs of the biggest traditional Christian churches, has a lot broader meaning, for these days the first official meeting of the Bishops of UOC KP and UOC MP took place. And this book unites as well. This book is a dialogue, connecting Ukrainian Churches. I believe it will really help in uniting Ukrainian Church and will foster the consolidation of society, looking forward to receiving such uniting messages nowadays.”


“We are accustomed to the books of this kind printed mostly in paperback, on a paper far from good quality. But this book is really extraordinary. Big efforts and funds are invested here. This is a solid, highly artistic, kind of a “crystal” edition, as it was noted here. This edition will allow parents to execute yet another order of God: “Don’t ban your children from coming to Me”. It is significant that this very good news here is brought to people by the Primates of all the most important traditional churches. My gratitude to the publisher and the artist,” the Auxillary Bishop of the Kyiv archdiocese of UGCC Yosyp (Milyan) said.

The artist Kost’ Lavro, who worked on “The Children’s Gospel” told everyone about a pleasant incident that happened to him. “My wife presented our “Gospel” to her colleague, a physician. In a couple of days this woman rapturously that this book is written so easy and clear that she read it in one night, and afterwards she gave the book her two adult daughters to read. She said that she wasn’t sure if anytime she could have read the whole “Gospel”, but this, thinner book she read with great pleasure. Thus, this book can become not only children’s, but also a family book,” said the artist.