FORT JENNINGS — The inspiration started at home.
Jacqueline Kohls, 34, of Fort Jennings, said it was a bit of a struggle to rouse everyone in her household in time for church Sunday mornings.
Kohls and her husband, Nathan, have a 6-year-old son, Mason.
“Every time we were going to go to church, my son always fought me and told me he was tired,” she said.
When she discovered a Facebook group called Children’s Book Authors and Illustrators: Publishing, Marketing and Selling, she took the inspiration for a storyline from her own experience.
She started writing “Dear Lord Jesus Why do I have to go to church?” in June, and it was published in October.
Mason is the featured character in the story, with the boy writing a letter to Jesus to ask why church is important. Jesus writes back, explaining people kneel and pray to honor Jesus and give him thanks while communion represents God’s love. The book also includes a prayer that teaches young children how to pray and hidden crosses for children to find.
“I came up with a storyline that worked for him to go to church,” Kohls said.
The 32-page book features rhyming words and brightly colored illustrations of St. Joseph Catholic Church, where they are members, Ottoville Immaculate Conception Church, where the Kohls were married and their son was baptized, as well as Unverferth equipment, where she works.
This is Kohls’ first book. Her project manager is from Rhode Island, the illustrator is from India, the graphic designer is from the Philippines and her editor is from Florida. She is working on three more books currently.
The end of the book has discussion questions for parents.
“My goal is to make it easier to bring the joy of God into children’s lives using engaging rhymes and a sense of humor,” Kohls said. “This book teaches children to have a closer connection with God and to talk and pray to him.”
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.