Art that comforts

Vatican Museums. And the Word became Flesh #7

“The depiction of Jesus’ birth is itself a simple and joyful proclamation of the mystery of the Incarnation of the Son of God.” With these few words, Pope Francis captures the task that sacred art is called to do – to reveal the truth of the Good News through beauty. Each day of the Christmas Octave, the Vatican Museums and Vatican News will offer a masterpiece from the papal collections, accompanied by a reflection from the Popes.

Bonifacio Veronese (Verona 1487 - Venice 1553), Holy Family with Saints John, Dorothy and Andrew; first half 16th century; oil on canvas; 128 x 182 cm (detail); © Musei Vaticani

© Musei Vaticani
© Musei Vaticani

“With ever renewed gladness and piety, beloved children of the entire universe, with Christmas each year, there resounds from the stable of Bethlehem reaching Christians’ ears, and sweetly echoing in their hearts, the message of Jesus, Light in the midst of darkness. With the splendour of heavenly truth, this message enlightens a world shrouded in tragic error; it infuses an exuberant and confident joy into humanity, distressed by profound and bitter sadness; it proclaims liberty to the children of Adam held captive in the chains of sin and guilt; it promises mercy, love, peace to the infinite hosts of those who are suffering tribulation, who have seen their happiness shattered and their energy battered in the storm of hatred and the strife of these turbulent days!”

Pope Pius XII – Radio message on Christmas Eve - 24 December 1942

Series Editor: Paolo Ondarza

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31 December 2022, 08:30