Since the earliest centuries of the Church, Christians have used artistic imagery to depict the theological truths of our Faith. Because God created us as creatures who learn through our senses, visual art is essential to our spiritual life.
The Church has always been confident in the use of material objects for worship because Christianity itself is inherently incarnational: Jesus Christ became incarnate and freely used the material world to teach, heal, and sanctify His human creatures.
In fact, sacred art can function as its own prayer language. This is most clearly evident in the ancient Christian tradition of iconography.
With icons, the truths of the Christian Faith are transmitted through a specific and regulated way of painting. That is why icons are described as being “written” as though they were a true language, and not merely “painted” as a form of art. Each symbol and color has a special significance that is intended for prayerful contemplation, so that the icon can serve as a window to heaven.
Icons have been an essential part of Christian prayer and worship since the early Church. Known as the first “icon painter,” St. Luke the Evangelist (whose feast day we celebrate today) is said to have painted the first icons of Our Lady from life.
You can honor St. Luke and continue the ancient tradition of iconography by bringing these works of art into your own home. This triptych featuring Our Lady of Perpetual Help guarded by angels is a beautiful icon that will create a powerful atmosphere of prayer and adorn your home in faithful style. Get yours today at The Catholic Company!