A decade ago, writer Lynn Raynar and photographer Aimee Christine Porter came together to create an inspirational book called Peace, Love, and Me.
For the project, the duo photographed and interviewed children, asking them to reflect on virtues like truth, caring, and patience. Each imaginative and hand-colored photo is accompanied by a page of quotes from the children—wise, funny, and often insightful.
The book was completed but never published, but its creators have always hoped to share their message. Now the Messenger Mountain News is working with Raynar and Porter to reproduce a selection of images from the project. In the spirit of the holiday season, we invite our readers to join us in reflecting on the themes of peace and love.
“As we photographed these beautiful children and interviewed them about virtues, we were struck by how deeply they care about our world,” Raynar and Porter wrote. “Their opinions reflect genuine wisdom and hilarious honesty. Sometimes the truth moved us to tears.”
The original book project was intended to be half art book, half hands-on work book, with blank pages for families to share their own thoughts on the themes presented in the book. The authors describe it as “a tool for spending precious time with our children.
Peace, Love, and Me encourages adults and children to nurture the virtues within us all,” Raynar says.
By sharing their project with the Messenger Mountain News’ readers, the authors hope to share the message that “we are all deeply connected through our common virtues.” It’s a message of light and hope.
Lynn Raynar is the mother of four children. She’s an educator who majored in elementary education and has been a broadcast journalist for ABC and NBC. She also has a Masters of Spiritual Science from Peace Theology Seminary. Her journey as a parent includes the joys and challenges of raising a child with Down Syndrome.
Photographer Aimee Christine Porter is the mother of three children, two of whom are adopted. Her work has appeared on magazines, greeting cards and album covers. Like Raynar, she is an educator who has worked with children. A world traveler, her passion is photographing people from diverse backgrounds. She embraces the teachings of the Bahai faith.