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In Tough Times, Kids Turn to 'Little Way' of St. Therese
Contact: John Harvey, 248-882-0745; www.littleflowerbook.com

ROCHESTER, Mich., Sept. 21 /Christian Newswire/ -- Anna's making her bed extra neatly these days. Lauren makes sure everyone plays fairly at recess. David unloaded the groceries from the car without being asked.

And they're all imitating a saint who lived over 100 years ago.

Saint Therese of Lisieux, the French nun who introduced her "Little Way" of serving God, is loved for her teachings of sacrifice and doing little things for God. She taught that small acts of kindness are things anyone can do, young or old, rich or poor. Now, readers of the fiction book for preteens, "Olivia and the Little Way" (Harvey House Publishing), are following the great saint's example precisely when it's needed most.

"My boys have really learned from Olivia's experience of following the Little Way," says Tracey Pousak, a Michigan mother of two. "They've reached a greater understanding of the hardships others are enduring right now and it's helped them to appreciate what they have."

The author of "Olivia and the Little Way," Nancy Carabio Belanger, is glad to hear it. "In this time of recession, kids can feel helpless as they see their parents worry about job loss and paying the bills. Following the Little Way of St. Therese is a positive thing for children to do to feel helpful. "

In the story, ten-year-old Olivia enters a new school and is eager to make friends amid peer pressure and the divide between the haves and the have-nots. Her best friend quickly becomes someone she has never seen--St. Therese. Olivia and the Little Way has made a huge impact on readers, who are drawn to modern-day Olivia's trials and her relationship with her grandmother, who teaches her to trust God and follow Therese's Little Way of sacrifice.

Readers also like how Olivia struggles with the same kinds of things they face each day. "I loved how Olivia tries to be cool like the other kids and how it doesn't feel right to her. St. Therese sort of guides her that it's wrong," says Ellie, a fifth grader.

"The stories I hear from readers helping their families and friends are so precious," says Carabio Belanger. "Kids love to help; they want to help. It just shows how valuable saints can be as positive role models for our youth, especially in these challenging times."

"Olivia and the Little Way" is available at Catholic stores nationwide, or online at www.littleflowerbook.com.