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Catholic University of America depicts George Floyd as Jesus in Byzantine Icon

Stinky

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"Still, it was considered improper to stray too far from the old patterns, or to use living human models for depicting Jesus and the saints."
 

LBK

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I'm saddened, but not at all surprised. This sort of sociopolitical schlock has been produced for years. The painting's style is clearly that of William Hart McNichols, a Jesuit who has painted many heretical images which serve his pet causes. Another is Br Robert Lenz, a Franciscan friar whose works are even worse in their blasphemy. Christ as a pagan horned god, the Holy Trinity as a trio of women, Sts Sergius and Bacchus as homosexual lovers .....

Both men promote themselves as "master iconographers" and "authorities" on iconography. Why neither of them have been brought to heel by their hierarchy is unfathomable.

OTOH, I am impressed and heartened that many of the students recognized this art as blasphemous and heretical. Shame on the university authorities for allowing the paintings to be displayed in the first place.
 

Deacon Lance

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I'm saddened, but not at all surprised. This sort of sociopolitical schlock has been produced for years. The painting's style is clearly that of William Hart McNichols, a Jesuit who has painted many heretical images which serve his pet causes. Another is Br Robert Lenz, a Franciscan friar whose works are even worse in their blasphemy. Christ as a pagan horned god, the Holy Trinity as a trio of women, Sts Sergius and Bacchus as homosexual lovers .....

Both men promote themselves as "master iconographers" and "authorities" on iconography. Why neither of them have been brought to heel by their hierarchy is unfathomable.

OTOH, I am impressed and heartened that many of the students recognized this art as blasphemous and heretical. Shame on the university authorities for allowing the paintings to be displayed in the first place.
Lenz was ordered by his superior to cease sales of his more controversial works like the “Horned God” but I don’t know if he obeyed or just went to a less public sales site.
 

Deacon Lance

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Eamonomae

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The Orthodox bishops of DC should write a letter protesting this painting to the Latin Cardinal Archbishop of DC, who is the university’s Chancellor.
Why not the Byzantine Catholics?
 

Deacon Lance

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Why not the Byzantine Catholics?
Because I think it would be taken more seriously from the Orthodox. We complained about the married priest restriction in America for years. An Orthodox priest said it was an ecumenical problem while in Rome and the ban was gone a few months later.
 

Ainnir

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Because I think it would be taken more seriously from the Orthodox. We complained about the married priest restriction in America for years. An Orthodox priest said it was an ecumenical problem while in Rome and the ban was gone a few months later.
I'm sorry it took that. Nice they lifted the ban, though.
 

LBK

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Lenz was ordered by his superior to cease sales of his more controversial works like the “Horned God” but I don’t know if he obeyed or just went to a less public sales site.
That edict was issued between 15 and 20 years ago. ISTM Lentz ignored it, as his work remains on the Trinity Stores to this day. And recent articles and stories involving him show he's still willfully painting work which can in no way be called canonical, even from a Roman or Eastern Catholic perspective, let alone Orthodox.
 

Eamonomae

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Someone stole it, so the titular Catholic administration rehung it up out of spite.

A pieta painting displayed at The Catholic University of America’s law school that some see as depicting George Floyd in the place of Jesus was stolen Tuesday night, the school announced.

But in an email Wednesday, Nov. 24, President John Garvey said the artwork — which sparked a social media backlash and an ongoing petition drive demanding its removal — has been replaced by a smaller version of the same painting that previously hung in the school's campus ministry office.

Also, good biased reporting. Obviously, the picture is just Jesus, not George Floyd - that's on you if you title a duck a duck.
 

Ariend

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Also, good biased reporting. Obviously, the picture is just Jesus, not George Floyd - that's on you if you title a duck a duck.
Explain to me how this picture does not depict George Floyd. Because the picture depicts George Floyd, with the ώ-Ό-Ν halo inscribed around his head.
 

Eamonomae

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Explain to me how this picture does not depict George Floyd. Because the picture depicts George Floyd, with the ώ-Ό-Ν halo inscribed around his head.
It was sarcasm. I was mocking the article - the article claimed "some see" the icon as George Floyd, implying that it's your fault for bringing politics into it. It's insulting to common sense, considering the artist admitted to that being the intention.

Political commentary removed - Pravoslavbob
 
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Ainnir

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Remember this is Religious Topics, not Politics. Thanks. --Ainnir
 

rakovsky

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Seeing Christ in the Poor
God Lives in His People
Two bedrock beliefs are the foundation for Vincentian Spirituality: first, God is the most real and the most precious reality there is, and second, this precious God lives in His people. This is what gives us reason to metaphorically “take our shoes off” when we come into the presence of those we serve. Anyone wanting the key to Vincent de Paul’s “great soul” could not get much closer than meditating on these two convictions – two beliefs which, for Vincent, were wrapped one inside the other. They are his answer to, “Why stop to help a crumpled old man who can’t help you back?”
Scriptural Basis
James 2:14-24, 1 John 3:16-18, Matthew 25: 34-40, Luke 4: 16-21, Matthew 5: 2-11
Matthew 25
34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father,inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
 

Eamonomae

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Seeing Christ in the Poor

Matthew 25
34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father,inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
None of this has anything to do with portraying George Floyd literally as God incarnate.
 
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rakovsky

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None of this has anything to do with portraying George Floyd literally as God incarnate.
He is making a painting that is not in the Orthodox style of iconography and depicting the idea of Christ being the poor, the imprisoned, those waylayed by robbers, etc. in the form of a specific case.

There is a famous allegorical ikon of the Ark or Ship of the Church with various saints on board and heterodox trying to stop the Ship. It doesn't mean that the ikonographer believes that the Church is a literal boat, nor does Brother Lenz believe that Floyd is literally Christ incarnate. Br. Lenz is making an allegorical painting, not an EO ikon.

As far as liturgics, it wouldn't work in Orthodoxy because EO ikons follow rules closely. But it's much better than RC Clown masses. The main danger would be if someone concluded that Floyd was literally Christ, but I don't think that this would happen.

As far as other cases of Christophanies/Theophanies, or angels appearing as real people, this is also in Christianity. There are a lot of OT stories of this. As I recall, Samson's parents had such an experience. The Gospels have cases where people only recognized the risen Lord after already mistaking Him for a gardener or traveler. Dostoevsky depicted Christ visiting the Grand Inquisitor in one story. So theoretically, you could in Orthodox theology describe Jesus allegorical or spiritually as a victim of racist or antiChristian religious brutality. In the PreChristian era, for example, there was pagan hostility and persecution of Jews, like in the Maccabean period.
 

Eamonomae

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He is making a painting that is not in the Orthodox style of iconography
Res ipsa loquitor

and depicting the idea of Christ being the poor, the imprisoned, those waylayed by robbers, etc. in the form of a specific case.
No historical precedent for portraying Jesus Christ as identical with a different human hypostasis, because that violates the 1st Commandment.

There is a famous allegorical ikon of the Ark or Ship of the Church with various saints on board and heterodox trying to stop the Ship. It doesn't mean that the ikonographer believes that the Church is a literal boat, nor does Brother Lenz believe that Floyd is literally Christ incarnate. Br. Lenz is making an allegorical painting, not an EO ikon.
This isn't an icon painted by Brother Lenz, it's painted by Kelly Latimore. And the intention is 100% to identify George Floyd with Jesus Christ, per the artist's own words. We can draw other conclusions about why he intended to paint George Floyd as Jesus, but it's definitely not in good "Faith", Catholicism or otherwise.

Titled "Mama," the painting, by artist Kelly Latimore, was installed in February outside the chapel at the university's Columbus School of Law.
Lattimore has said the painting was commissioned to “mourn” Floyd, but when asked by an interviewer if the figure in the pieta is Floyd or Jesus, he responded ambiguously, answering “yes.”

As far as liturgics, it wouldn't work in Orthodoxy because EO ikons follow rules closely. But it's much better than RC Clown masses.
Ah, so the truth comes out. Arguing in bad faith on behalf of your opponents in order to strengthen your own religion's claims. I got you.
There's a few problems though:

1. This is still an offensive depiction of the God you worship in the style of your own religion's art, so it isn't okay. Hindus create an uproar whenever one of their gods is portrayed blasphemously - is their Faith stronger than yours?
2. Catholics still have to follow the 10 Commandments per their own religion. And that includes worshipping false gods.
3. Religious Art in Orthodoxy aren't nearly as regulated as you think, both in style and in substance. Maybe more so than under this current Pontificate, but still broad compared to the "Neo-Byzantine style iconography is the only art style Orthodoxy's ever used coming from the Apostles themselves" apologetic argument you often hear.





P.S. While Catholic Masses still have much work to be done, they are in a much better place than the 90s clown masses you are so used to seeing.

The main danger would be if someone concluded that Floyd was literally Christ, but I don't think that this would happen.
The artist made it clear that was his intention.
 

RaphaCam

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Lenz was ordered by his superior to cease sales of his more controversial works like the “Horned God” but I don’t know if he obeyed or just went to a less public sales site.
I can't wrap my mind around the fact someone would paint this kind of trash and still feel their right place is in a Catholic fraternity taking orders from a superior. What a character.
 

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I can't wrap my mind around the fact someone would paint this kind of trash and still feel their right place is in a Catholic fraternity taking orders from a superior. What a character.
A servant's only as good as his master.
 

RaphaCam

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A servant's only as good as his master.
I don't mean to diss his superior, what I meant is that it's strange that someone would be wicked enough to paint these anti-icons and yet be pious-ish enough to be a Franciscan under a superior.
 

LBK

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Unfortunately, Lentz is not the only one. Another who is equally notorious for his sociopolitical "icons" is William Hart McNichols, a Jesuit priest. There is plenty of common ground in the works of both men in content and approach. McNichols is on the record for saying "Lentz is regarded as one of the foremost authorities on icons today." Speaks volumes.
 
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