Heaven Meets Earth: Celebrating Pascha and the Twelve Feasts, written by John Kosmas Skinas and published by Ancient Faith (2015) is a book that Orthodox families will treasure. Describing each of the major twelve feasts and Pascha through beautiful photographs of icons, churches, monasteries and people, in addition to scripture, festal hymns, and various traditions, this gorgeous book helps people of all ages understand how the beauty in our churches is more than just a reflection of heaven: this beauty is an expression of heaven lived out and celebrated in churches throughout the year, all over the world.
Sometimes in the hustle of our lives, the feasts seems to pop up, one after another, and they are over before we even stop to think about what they meant–except for the fact that maybe there was suddenly an extra fasting day. This is especially true if one misses Matins and evening services, or for many of us who were not brought up in households who celebrated the feasts.
This book is a wonderful resource to help families understand and celebrate each of the feasts. The text and artwork are so rich and detailed that it can be used year after year, yet is simple enough to give a short explanation to and inspiration for a child who wonders why we’re going to church again. It includes many resources to extend the text into your family’s life through further study, but more importantly, this book is joyful resource that will help families truly celebrate the feasts.
Heaven Meets Earth is a lovely addition to any family’s library. It would make a great present for Godparents to give. It’s also a helpful gift for people new to the faith because it shows how our faith and theology are celebrated and lived out in our churches and homes. It’s a unique book that reflects the loving work of many people and will be a blessing to our families for years to come.