Icons

Icons as Resistance

Veneration of the diptych icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father

icon-in-texas-rev

Picture of the diptych icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father visiting and being venerated in the humble abode of a Latino family in the United States of America. Also present are a relic of the True Cross of Our Lord, Jesus Christ, and relics of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the apostles.

The theophanic ministry of the icon and the restoration of souls

The theophanic ministry of the icon (as different from a religious painting) leads to the restoration and return of souls to their Creator and Father not just by its intrinsic beauty, which both leads in a mysterious manner to and transmits the beauty of Him Who is Other, but by drawing souls beyond the pale of this earthly plane to that of the heavenly plane through its epiphanic presence and direct participation in the divine light; the energeia of God. The icon is neither a sacrament as considered by some in the Eastern Church, nor is it just a sacramental as understood by the vast majority in the Western Church. The icon lies at the intersection of both, showing characteristics of sacraments and sacramentals, yet never attaining to the fullness of the former, while having more than the fullness of the latter. It is thus that the icon has been granted by God a unique place in the history and function of the liturgy, as well as the history of the salvation and deification of humankind.

How the icon will save the souls of humankind and restore Christianity

What are icons? Icons are sacramental avenues of divine grace that struggle in our times both for the Church and for the faith, in a similar, albeit inverse, manner to when the Church struggled for the icon during the major periods of iconoclasm in the history of Christianity. It is the icon that will bring forth, once more, the bloom of the incomparable beauty and love of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit in the eye, heart, mind and soul of humankind. This it will achieve by removing, through its ascetic beauty and embodied grace, the blindness of the spirit – the shuttered and darkened nous – that so characterizes human persons in our present times.

God the Father icon in Approaching the Divine – A Primer for Iconography

APPROACHING THE DIVINE FRONT COVERThe diptych ecumenical icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father Encompassing All Hearts has just been featured in the newly released book Approaching the Divine – A Primer for Iconography by the world-renowned iconographer and Villanova University professor of art, Fr. Richard G. Cannuli, O.S.A. (Hope & Life Press, 2014). The icon is featured in the section Icons of God the Father. The icon had been written by Fr. Cannuli based upon the original pencil drawing of the Divine HeartApproaching the Divine is available in hardback, paperback and ebook editions.

The Icon of the Divine Heart featured in Cannuli’s Approaching the Divine

Why an icon not a painting? – 3

The symbolic language of the icon is “incomprehensible to the sated flesh, to the heart full of longings for material things. But it becomes the very fabric of life when these longings collapse and an abyss opens at our feet. Then we need a firm foothold at the edge of the abyss, we need to feel the motionless calm of the icon above our tribulations. And the joyous vision of a sobor, a church of all creation above the bloody chaos of our existence becomes as necessary as our daily bread. We need (more…)

Why an icon not a painting? – 2

“At all levels – the artistic, the spiritual, the political and the domestic – icons reveal a profound concern for the integration and inter-relationship of the spiritual and the material, the sacred and the secular” (J. Baggley, 1987, Doors of Perception).

Why an icon not a painting?

“The wider significance of the events portrayed [in the icon] has to be worked out in the soul of those who behold the icon; what the icon represents may have been manifested at a precise point in time and space, but its fuller significance is found in the inner world where the true work of purification, illumination and union have to be accomplished” (Fr. John Baggley, 1987, Doors of perception: Icons and their spiritual significance, p. 82).

More about why it was an icon, not a painting, that was requested by God the Father for consecration and veneration can be found here.

On venerating the icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father

“The veneration of icons by the Church is like a lantern  and the light from it has never been extinguished. It will continue to burn, as it has in the past; but its is not motionless . . . And even when all that is hostile to the icon strives to extinguish its light, covering it in a shroud of darkness, the lantern does not run dry and cannot run dry. And if, through loss of piety and devotion, the ability to paint icons should ever fade, even then the light will live on, ever ready to reappear in all its power to renew us through the victory of Christ’s Transfiguration” (Fr. Gregory Krug, Thoughts on the icon).

Notice – The icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father

The icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father Encompassing All Hearts has now been featured in the Christian Art and Christian Theme Artwork galleries at Fine Art America.

Notice – The icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow

The recently completed icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow has now been featured in the Christian Artwork, Christian Theme Artwork, Madonna, Premium FAA Artists and Women Painters galleries at Fine Art America.

The icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow

Our Lady of LongmeadowThe new icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow has just been completed. It will be blessed and installed in its intended home at Saint Mary’s Parish Church, Longmeadow, MA later next month. This is a revealed icon, the story behind the icon can be found here.

 

The drawing for the icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow

EPSON002-page-001This is the original pencil drawing (right) for the revealed icon of Our Lady of Longmeadow. The writing of the actual icon is presently in progress.

On the icon of the Divine Heart

Why have we been given the icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father – an icon of a heart and Person generally invisible in nature, in comparison to the incarnate Son of God who visibly took on our humanity? Because “visible things in so far as they represent invisible things without shape so that in giving the visible things a physical shape, we can have a veiled knowledge of them . . . the mystery of the Trinity is reflected in the sun, its light and its rays” (Egon Sendler, 1988, The Icon: Image of the Invisible, p. 80).

Reopening the heart of our souls

When illumination occurs, it is the heart, the eye, of our souls, or as some call it the “eye of the heart,’ that is reopened to see the inner principles – logoi – of things, including spiritual realities. The heart of the soul, the nous, is also the place in which God our Father descends to live with His presence when He so desires. This in-dwelling by the Father in the reopened heart of our souls is the coming of (more…)

Created Beauty – My icons

created beauty websiteHave a look at Created Beautythe new website for the icons I finally let myself be persuaded to start writing and showing. To the left you can see a snapshot of it with the icons I have written so far. I set up a different site for these icons so that they could remain separate. I named the site Created Beauty because icons are created windows that open unto Him who is Uncreated Beauty – the Divine Light; our beautiful and unparalleled Almighty Father.

Small icon of God the Father

Icon of God the Father w frame2Just completed a small, portable icon (right) of our Almighty Father. Dimensions are 20cm x 30cm. Materials are wood with linen and natural gesso, 23.5 kt gold leaf and natural egg tempera. I originally intended to paint this icon for myself. But while scoring the drawing, applying the roskrysh and first highlights, the icon was so liked that it will now be in the private possession of an interfaith family. This icon of God the Father was blessed on the feastday of the Presentation of the Child Mary in the Temple (2013).

Why is an icon wonder-working?

You work wonders through created things, O Lord, while men have lost the gift of wonder working. You take fire and water for Your servants, while people refuse to serve You. To wood and metal You give Your power, while it is returned to You, despised by people. Through earth and grass You bestow mercy on Your chosen ones, while people make themselves too impure to (more…)

What is the icon of the Father’s Heart? – Thought for the day

“Visibility of the invisible, this portrayability of the unportrayable, is what the icon is” (Bulgakov).

The Icon of the Divine Heart of God the Father – More apologetics – 1

“Visible icons are the seeing of the invisible. They are products and representations by visible images of divine traits and ineffable and elevated contemplations” (Dionysus the Aeropagite).

“God sketched His image in the creature and this divine image is, therefore, imageable” (Bulgakov).

According to iconoclasts and many iconographers of the traditional stripe, it is impossible – heretical even – to have an icon either portraying God the Father or an attribute of Himself. To this effect, both groups of people quote Jn 1:18 from Scripture: “No man has seen God at any time.”

But setting aside the fact that the Father Himself asked that such icons be made and both showed (more…)

The gift of God – The Blessed Virgin Mary

Our Lady the Protectress frontTo the left is the newly-written icon of the gratuitous gift of the Holy Trinity to mankind: the Blessed Virgin Mary as Our Lady the Protectress; deified Mother of Jesus Christ, Queen of heaven and earth. This is a revealed icon which reflects the beauty and most common facial expression of Our Lady as seen in 2010 through 2012.

The icon was completed by Fr Richard G. Cannuli, O.S.A., based on the original icon painting done by the author. It was blessed at the altar with a regular icon blessing during the morning liturgy at the chapel of Clare Priory, Suffolk, on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, 2013.