Written by Emily Mullins
The United Church of Christ and The Pilgrim Press quickly surpassed their goal of sending 1,000 donated copies of the Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children coloring book to Newtown, Conn. The goal was met in less than four hours due to the generosity of UCC members, partners and supporters.
"The members of the Newtown Congregational Church UCC and all who are affected by the Sandy Hook tragedy would like to thank the people of the United Church of Christ for the gift of 1,000 copies of Water Bugs and Dragonflies," said the Rev. Dr. Michael Ciba, UCC Connecticut Conference Southwest regional minister. "These coloring books will help our church minister to families and children facing the grief of these horrible events."
On Dec. 18 – in the wake of the tragedy in Newtown – the UCC and its denominational publishing house, The Pilgrim Press, coordinated an online campaign to send 1,000 Water Bugs and Dragonflies coloring books to Newtown Congregational Church UCC. These 1,000 books have been shipped to the church for distribution to Newtown parents, teachers, families and friends.
"The UCC and The Pilgrim Press are thrilled with the response we received from this effort," said Ann Poston, publisher of The Pilgrim Press and director of communication for the UCC. "Since it was first published 30 years ago, Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children has helped explain the mysteries of death to those both young and old, and we hope the people of Newtown will also find some comfort and peace through this resource."
By the time the campaign closed at 11:59 pm, $2,700 was raised to assist churches in the Newtown area, and an additional 1,700 coloring books will be sent to other Connecticut churches to use within their communities and congregations to help young children better cope with death.