A message from the Director:

We suggest starting with the books listed here, and we welcome your suggestions for other books to add to the list. Feel free to email your comments and recommendations to us.

Victoria Stephan

Preschool through 3rd grade (ages 3 through 8)

  • Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope by Donna O’Toole (Celo Press, 1998)
  • The Accident by C. Carrick (Seabury Press, 1976)
  • About Gramma by Vaunda M. Nelson (So China Printing, 1988)
  • A Father Like That by C. Zolotov (Harper& Row, 1971)
  • Friends by Helme Hein (Aladdin Books, 1986)
  • Nana Upstairs, Nana Downstairs by Tomie dePaola (Putnam, 2000)

4th through 8th grade (ages 9 through 13)

  • Am I Still a Sister? by Alicia M. Sims (Sims Publications, 1986)
  • An Elephant in the Living Room by Jill Hastings and Marion Tuppo (CompCare Press, 1977)
  • Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White (Harper & Row, 1952; also on DVD)
  • The Education of Little Tree by Forrest Carter (University of New Mexico Press, 1976)
  • Bridge to Terabithia by K. Paterson (Avon Books, 1977; also on DVD)
  • Children Facing Grief by Janis Romond (Abbey Press, 1989)

9th through 12th grade (ages 14 through 18)

  • After Suicide by John Hewitt (Westminster Press, 1980)
  • Anne Frank: A Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (Doubleday, 1952; also on DVD)
  • Brian Piccolo: A Short Season by Jeannie Morris (Dell, 1972; also on DVD)
  • Eric by Doris Lund (Lippencott, 1974)
  • I Heard the Owl Call My Name by M. Craven (Doubleday, 1973)
  • Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom (Random House, 2002)
  • The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (Hyperion Press, 2007)
  • The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom (Random House, 2004)


  • After the Funeral by Jane Loretta Winsch (Paulist Press, 1995)
  • Healing and Growing Through Grief by Donna O’Toole (Compassion Books, 1993)
  • Praying Through Grief by Maureeyn O’Brien
    (resources for prayer services for those grieving a loss)
  • What Can I Say? by Kelly Osmour
  • In Times of Illness by Robert Hamma
  • Through Good Times and Bad by Robert Hamma and Kahtyn Schneider
  • Simply Surrender by John Kirvan
  • Peace of Heart by John Kirvan
  • You Shall Not Want by Richard Chilson
  • Befriend the Darkness, Welcome the Light by Joyce Rupp

Adult Children (Older Parent’s Death)

  • Recovering from the Loss of a Parent by Katharine Fair Donnelly


  • In Times of Caregiving by Robert Hamma
  • The Circle of Life byJoyce Rupp
  • Take Five by Joseph Champlin
  • Riding the Dragon by Robert Wicks
  • Walking With Those Who Hurt by Joyce Rupp
  • May I Walk You Home by Joyce Rupp
  • Praying Our Goodbyes by Joyce Rupp

Holiday Coping

  • Not Just Another Day by Missy Lowery


  • Cowbells and Courage by Pat Paige
  • Does Anyone Hurt This Bad and Live by Carlene Vester Eneroth
  • Waterbugs and Dragonflies by Doris Stickney
  • Toward Peace: Prayers for the Widowed by Beverley S. Gordon

For further reading click on these offsite resources :

Ave Maria Press
Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana

Centering Corporation
Omaha, Nebraska

Franciscan Media