I first started seeing books and resources by Katherine Bogner in my Instagram feed. Catholic moms whom I followed mentioned her stamps, her Fulton Sheet unit study, or her newest book—Through the Year with Jesus. Her book caught my eye because I’d just finished a Marian consecration with my kids and was looking for another way to continue our devotional time together. As the girls and I began reading Katie’s book, I also reached out to Katie to chat about writing, faith, and more.
I received a copy of Through the Year with Jesus from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links; as an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
TKM: Tell us a bit about yourself!
Katherine: Hi! My name is Katie Bogner and I am a Catholic school teacher and Director of Religious Education from Central Illinois. I’m a proud aunt of five, a big reader, and I love crafting and creating art.
TKM: Tell us a bit about your newest book.
Katie Bogner: My new book Through the Year with Jesus: Gospel Readings and Reflections for Children was designed to help facilitate meaningful conversations between adults and kids about the life of Christ. It has weekly readings from the Gospels following the themes of the Liturgical Seasons, as well as resources like a full page piece of sacred art, discussion questions, practical ideas to live out our faith, and prompts for praying Lectio Divina.
TKM: Are you a cradle Catholic or a convert?
Katie: I’m a cradle Catholic, but have so much respect for converts and the gifts they bring to the Church! I actually have been a member of the same parish from my baptism as an infant until now.
TKM: What inspired you to write Through the Year with Jesus?
Katie: Sharing resources to help parents and teachers feel equipped to share the Gospel with their kids is a huge priority of mine. This book is just an extension of that ministry. I desired to create a tool that took the stories of Jesus deeper than a standard picture book for kids, but included support so reading the actual text of Scripture seemed doable and meaningful. The dialogue between kids and their parents or teachers is so mutually beneficial for spiritual growth!
TKM: Who is your favourite author and why?
Katie Bogner: I’m terrible at narrowing things down to favorites—so instead I’ll give you a list! Pope John Paul II, Fulton Sheen, C.S. Lewis, Scott Hahn, Tessa Afshar, Louisa May Alcott, and Jane Austen are a few.
TKM: What was the most challenging part of writing this book, and how did you overcome that challenge?
Katie: I think the most challenging part was the “hurry-up-and-wait” that is inevitably part of any big project. Some of my favorite elements of Through the Year with Jesus were the last to be finalized, so there was a lot of patience required behind the scenes, but it was also so rewarding to see it come to fruition.
“Katherine Bogner hits a liturgical living home run with this devotional for children. . . . This book is an excellent, all-in-one way to bring the stories of Jesus and his family and his friends and his life into a home or classroom in a way that kids of all ages can connect with at their own levels. Grownups are sure to find their own faith deepened as well.” ~ Kendra Tierney, author of The Catholic All Year Compendium
TKM: What was the most fun or most exciting part of writing Through the Year with Jesus?
Katie: I’m sure it seems obvious, but opening the box and holding the book in my hands the first time was incredibly special. All of the work had been done digitally—email, word processing, phone calls, internet searches, pdfs, text messages… so seeing the book in print was a memorable moment.
TKM: What advice would you give to a writer just starting out?
Katie: When I started blogging ten-ish years ago, my goal wasn’t actually writing—it was sharing resources. Knowing what my mission was helped me to narrow my audience and my purpose, both of which I think are important for someone who desires to grow and build in any type of writing. Find your purpose, and just dive in! Find as many ways as fit your talents and mission to share, and see where God takes you!
TKM: You also have an Etsy shop with stamps and stickers. How did you get started on that?
Katie Bogner: I love any combination of faith and art, so I’ve really enjoyed Bible Journaling for a number of years. There are many, many resources out there for Bible Journaling in general, but not a lot of them from a Catholic perspective, so I decided to offer tools to help people include little bits of Catholic art in their Bible Journaling, which also work well for regular journals, planners, etc.
TKM: Where is your favourite place to write?
Katie: I did most of the writing for Through the Year with Jesus in the summer and a lot of it was on the front porch. The fresh air and views out over our farm were a good balance for staring at the computer screen while I was working.
TKM: Who is your favourite saint and why?
Katie: This is another one of those impossible things to narrow down, so I am going to give you a list again: St. Catherine of Siena, St. Maximillian Kolbe, St. John Paul II, Ven. Fulton J. Sheen, and of course St. Joseph and Mother Mary!
TKM: Do you have another book or project in the works?
Katie Bogner: Nothing formal yet, but I’m not one to be idle—I plan to keep creating resources for my blog and will wait to see what God has in store for bigger projects. 😉
More about Katherine Bogner
To find out more about Katie and her books, drop by her blog. You can also find her on Instagram and Pinterest. Through the Year with Jesus is available from Amazon, the St. Paul Centre, and your favourite Catholic bookstore.
“What a tremendous gift to the Church this book is! Parents, grandparents, godparents, teachers, and friends will find the Gospels opened to them through these reflections, questions, and (most especially) the insights they glean from the children they love.” ~ Meg Hunter-Kilmer, speaker and author of Saints Around the World