Very Young Catholics in Togo and Very Young Catholics in the United States are the first two in a series of children's books that deal with the everyday life of Catholic children around the world, in their families and parishes. Each story in the series will take place in a different country, and the full set will circle the globe. The series shows both the variety and the unity of the Catholic child’s experience.


The books are richly illustrated with gorgeous photographs.

Family Time

The stories are gentle and engaging, aimed at the reader between 6 and 11. Everyday events in the life of a Catholic family, such as meals, sports, and family outings, are interwoven with Catholic culture and doctrine.


For the international readers, particular facts specific to each country are explained in the appendix.

Some scenes from the author's research trip to Togo.

Video: Jake Schmiedicke
Music: African Skies by Stephen J. Anderson

Emily Koczela

About The Author

Emily Koczela is the Director of the Very Young Catholic Project. She is a lawyer and served as Chief Financial Officer to a network of Catholic Schools. She is a lifelong Catholic, mother of six, and grandmother of fourteen (so far).

Her travels have taken her to Mass in more than a dozen countries, and the unity of faith across nations was an inspiration for this series. Her parish pastor provided a letter of bona fides for the project, and other members of the clergy have been stalwart supporters, referring her to parishes around the world. In creating the project, these words of the Eucharistic Prayer were particularly inspiring.

“You never cease to gather a people to yourself, so that from the rising of the sun to its setting a pure sacrifice may be offered to your name”

Very Young Catholics

In The USA

Filled with family adventures, beautiful photography, and gentle humor, Very Young Catholics in the United States draws an appealing portrait of the life of a Catholic child in the United States. This is the first book of the Very Young Catholic series. Each book introduces the young reader to Catholic children in a new country, and the full series circles the globe. All of the children say the same prayers at Mass and share the same beliefs, but they live in widely varying locations and cultures.

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Very Young Catholics

In Togo

Very Young Catholics in Togo is set in a small West African farming village, along a river. The beautiful landscape and rich vegetation form a vibrant background to daily events. The children’s lives revolve around family, friends, and school, like children everywhere. Mass is celebrated at the lovely village church, which serves several surrounding villages as well. Singing and dancing are the order of the day, as the villages gather to pray.

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Very Young Catholics

In Austria

Advent and Christmas are holy seasons everywhere, but the Catholic children of Austria have an especially rich set of traditions to draw on. Very Young Catholics in Austria begins in Advent and follows a young family through Christmas and Epiphany. We see the children creating tiny cookie houses, attending the traditional Advent Mass at dawn, enjoying news from friends in the snow-covered Alps, and reading the Christmas story from St. Luke’s Gospel. Other adventures include a visit to the traditional Christmas market in their small town, and a spin on the ice-skating rink at the Vienna City Hall. Throughout all of their adventures runs the thread of their strong faith and the joy of Christ’s birth.

Coming in 2019

Very Young Catholics

In Taiwan

Once upon a time there were four little girls and they lived with their mother and father on an island in the middle of a bright blue sea. That sounds like the beginning of a fairy-tale, but it is quite true. Very Young Catholics in Taiwan will join the four little girls at church, at home, and on their family adventures.

Coming in 2020