Wednesday Evening Bible Study Class, 6:30-7:30 PM

Saint Joseph's Hall

This year we will be reading

The Acts of the Apostles


Peter Baptizes Cornelius

Francesco Trevisani (1656-1746), "Peter Baptizing Cornelius the Centurion" (1709)


The class is led by Father Jay Smith and is open to all.

No prior experience is necessary.


Sunday Morning Adult Forum

Sunday, January 12 and 26, 10:00  AM.

The class will NOT meet on January 19.

Location: Arch Room, Mission House, 2nd Floor

Studies in Christian Art, Culture & Theology:
An Introduction to Byzantine Iconoclasm


From Skylitzis Chronicle, Argument

Argument About Icons before the Emperor from "The Skylitzis Chronicle"


In this class we will examine some of the ideas about religious images in the East Roman Empire in the 8th and 9th centuries. By looking at the argument about images during the Iconoclast Controversy we hope to move towards a "theology of the Christian image": what are we doing when we "venerate" a religious image?; why did such veneration come to be persmissible for some, though not all, Christians and why is it not considered a violation of the Second Commandment?; how are icons similar to, and different from, such other religious phenomena as relics or the Holy Eucharist?; what are our mental and spiritual "boundaries," whether conscious or unconscious, that make some, though not all, Christians feel that the veneration of images (and of some of their prototypes, such as the saints) is not idolatrous? Finally, how can a "theology of the image" help us in developing our own spirituality?

This class is led by Father Jay Smith.



Sunday Morning Adult Forum

Sunday, February 2 & 9, 2014, 10:00  AM

Location: Arch Room, Mission House, 2nd Floor


Rediscovering the Spiritual in Early Twentieth-Century Art:
A Gentle Soul's Approach to Modernism    
with Dennis Raverty, Ph.D., Art Historian


"All methods are sacred if they are driven by inner necessity."

--Vasily Kandinsky, Concerning the Spiritual in Art (1911)

The radical stylistic innovations of early 20th-century European painters has led most of us to overlook the original mystical intentions of the artists themselves. This two-part series aims at restoring this transcendent dimension to their work.  As explorers of interior psychological realms, these self-designated prophets and visionaries were a poignant "voice crying in the wilderness" amid the madness and carnage of the first half of the century with its wars, dictatorships and death camps.


Session I: Sunday, February 2, 2014, 10:00 AM


Emil Nolde, The Prophet

Emil Nolde (1867-1956), "The Prophet"


German Expressionism on the Eve of the "Great War":

The Artist as Mystic Vessel


Vasily Kandinsky, leader of the Blaue Reiter group in Munich, described art as the last bastion of the Spirit and urged artists to undertake an ambitious "reenchantment" of our godless modern world, which he maintained, is enthralled by crass materialism and the worship of technology.  Artworks by Kandinsky, as well as Franz Marc, Paul Klee, Otto Dix, Ernst Barlach, Emil Nolde and Max Beckmann--works intended to give concrete expression to the Spirit--will be critically examined in light of these all-but-forgotten sacramental aspirations.



Session II: Sunday, February 9, 2014, 10:00 AM


Salvador Dali, Vision of Saint John of the Cross

Salvador Dali (1904-1989), "The Vision of Saint John of the Cross"


Surrealism & the School of Paris between the Wars:

The Artist as Mediumistic Being

Marcel Duchamp once described the artist as "a mediumistic being" from the "labyrinth beyond time and space," those subterranean corridors in the depths of the human psyche.  Diagnosing the war as a massive nervous breakdown on the societal level, the Surrealists used the latest methods developed by the new Freudian psychology in order to explore the recesses of the unconscious mind--a region almost as dark as hell itself--in order to let in the light.



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