Brother and Sister Bear’s friend Ferdy Factual loves science. Brother and Sister like science too. But when Ferdy tells Brother and Sister he doesn’t believe God created the world, the bear cubs don’t know what to think. What does it really mean to have “faith” in something you can’t see?
|About the Contributor(s)||Mike Berenstain
Mike Berenstain grew up watching his parents, Stan and Jan, working together to write and draw these lovable bears. Eventually he started drawing and writing about them too.
|Publish Date||Feb 25, 2014|
|Series||Berenstain Bears/Living Lights|
- Review by Zac
In The Berenstain Bears Keep the Faith Brother and Sister Bear’s friend tells them that he does not believe in God. This is new to the cubs who then ask their parents about why they believe in God. Using the moment as a teaching moment, the parents take the cubs to see the preacher where he teaches them about faith using the story of Daniel.
I love Berenstain bears and remember reading them all of the time growing up. I am excited that they are offering faith based stories as well. Unfortunately, I was disappointed with the spiritual elements in this book. At the beginning, the cubs are talking to their friend Ferdy who is into science. I thought the book was going to take an eveloution twist, but instead when Sister Bear makes a comment about God, Ferdy says he does not believe in God. Through this, the cubs talk to their parents who do not really give the cubs an answer, but say that they will take them to talk to the pastor. I found this part really disappointing. While I think it is good that the parents were leading the cubs to talk to the pastor, however, with a topic such as faith, I felt the parents should have been able to explain this to the cubs.
As the story moves on and the cubs meet with the pastor, they learn about the faith of Daniel. While I liked the tie in with the story of Daniel in the Lions Den, I felt it did not connect with the root question of faith in God and believing in Him. While Daniel had faith in God, he trusted God for safety in that particular story, compared to explaining why God exists, which would tie into Ferdy.
In the end of the book, the cubs are leaving the church and there is a storm. Sister Bear is afraid, but then remembers Daniel and is not scared. I am not really sure how we went from Ferdy not believing in God to the cubs learning about Daniel and not to be afraid. I feel like the cubs should have gone back to talk to Ferdy or at least left with a deeper belief in the existence of God since that is what was addressed in the beginning of this book.
The illustrations were not bad in this book. I felt they were similar to many other Berenstain Bear titles, but I was really disappointed with the spiritual elements and lack of connection through the story. (Posted on 7/21/2014)
- Review by Katie