Encountering the Transcendent

I always know May is here and spring is in full swing when I find myself juggling multiple after-school schedules. Acting as an expert scheduler trying my best to figure out the logistics between baseball, soccer and ballet. Life is often bustling and hurrying along. We find ourselves moving quickly from one activity to the next. Carpool to work, work to meetings, meetings to extracurriculars.  So seldom do we stop and pause allowing our minds to rest and our hearts to be still. Rarely do we actually stop and smell the roses and recognize the beauty around us.

If you have ever walked into a grand basilica or exquisite cathedral you know what it is like to have encountered tremendous beauty. Perhaps St. Peter’s Basilica, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, St. John Lateran or the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, churches filled with grandeur and awe. Maybe it was a sculpture, mosaic or stained glass window that caught your attention and made you pause. Perhaps it was a fresco or mural that took your breath away. Churches filled with sacred art that sets them apart from the rest of the world.

Sacred art has the ability to slow us down, to cause us to stop and recognize beauty. Whether we realize it or not, it causes us to be still for a moment as we think of someone beyond ourselves. In doing so images of the sacred lift our hearts and minds to God, which is prayer. It can lead us to an encounter with God, furthermore calling us to worship and adoration of him who created us.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1192 says that “Sacred images in our churches and homes are intended to awaken and nourish our faith in the mystery of Christ. Through the icon of Christ and his works of salvation, it is he whom we adore.” For centuries sacred art was used as a way to catechize the illiterate faithful and today the same can hold true.

Sacred art when displayed in our own homes is a way to catechize our children, our relatives and our neighbors. The family as the domestic church, it is the parents who are to be the first to catechize their children, to encourage them and to help foster their vocation. By displaying sacred art in our home we can awaken our children’s love of God and help to nurture an encounter with the transcendent.

SPECIAL PREMIUM $600-$1,199 LEVEL – During this Give Hope pledge drive, you can add sacred art to your home or as a gift to a child, grandchild or friend. The beautiful Chalice Arched Diptych would make a perfect gift for a First Communicant or Confirmand, depicting a chalice and the holy Eucharist on one side and a striking image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on the other. Made with high-quality, glossy wood this is perfect for a shelf, mantle or bedside table.

“Genuine sacred art draws man to adoration, to prayer, and to the love of God, Creator and Savior, the Holy One and Sanctifier.” (CCC 2502)

If you give to Relevant Radio at the $600-1,199 level today, you will receive this Chalice Arched Diptych!

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Cassie Everts serves as Contributing Writer at Relevant Radio. She is a wife, mother, author and speaker. She is the co-author of Nursery of Heaven and blogs at Everyday Ann. She holds degrees in Theology and Communication Arts from Franciscan University of Steubenville.