Endorsed by Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish
A spiritual conversation-starter for
adults and children to read together.
"A very long time ago, when the world
was new...two children walked in God's garden called Earth. One
was named Cain, the other, Abel. They were the first children.
The first brothers."
We know the story well. But what can it
mean for us—and for our children—today?
Award-winning author Sandy Eisenberg Sasso recasts the biblical
tale of Cain and Abel in a way that invites adults and kids to
a conversation about anger and our power to deal with it in
Cain and Abel were born into God's garden
called Earth, a world of bright days for working in their
fields and peaceful nights to share the stories of their
dreams. The first children, the first brothers, they were so
much alike yet so different—Cain a shepherd, Abel a
They lived side by side, surrounded by
trees where wonderful, exotic fruits of many kinds grew:
everywhere orapples, rasdew, and banangerines ripened all on a
single branch. The air was sweet with the smell of pinango,
limeberry, and waterloupe.
But jealousy, anger, and fear took all
this away. Cain and Abel's happiness came to an end, and with
it, the trees' ability to grow these special fruits.
In a world often hurt by violence, this
retold biblical story gives children and adults a starting
point for discussing anger and its effects on those around us.
By harnessing the power we have to deal with our emotions in
positive ways, we can once again cultivate the fruits of
peace—and change the world for the better.
Praise for Sandy Eisenberg Sasso's Books
"Extraordinary.... In true Sasso
fashion, we are given the beautiful imagery we need to envision
a different ending to the continuing story of anger turned into
Gussin Paley, author of The Kindess of Children
"In a world in which violence has all
too often become a 'first resort,' Rabbi Sasso reminds us that
we can return to a culture and a community of
Yarrow, of Peter, Paul & Mary
"Vibrates and sparkles.... What a
gift...to the spirituality of young minds and hearts."
G. Brakeman, Episcopal priest,
pastoral counselor; author of Spiritual
Lemons: Biblical Women, Irreverent Laughter and Righteous Rage
"Rich in meaning for children of all
ages.... Has particular poignancy for various situations in the
—Fr. Joseph F. Girzone, author of
the Joshua series
"An excellent way to honor the
imaginative breadth and depth of the spiritual life of the
Robert Coles, Harvard University
Joani Keller Rothenberg earned a master's degree in art therapy from
Leslie College and works extensively with children as an art
therapist. She lives in Indianapolis with her husband and four