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Gwyneth Holston is a sacred artist who works to provide and promote good quality Catholic art. Her website is gwynethholston.com.
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“Iconographic tradition has theologically interpreted the manger and the swaddling cloths in terms of the theology of the Fathers. The child stiffly wrapped in bandages is seen as prefiguring the hour of his death: from the outset, he is the sacrificial victim, as we shall see more closely when we examine the reference to the first-born. The manger, then, was seen as a kind of altar.”
— Pope Benedict XVI (2012)

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Finally! A Manly Saint Joseph
published 17 March 2014 by Gwyneth Holston

NE OF MY favorite paintings of Saint Joseph is by Jusepe de Ribera. This Spanish Baroque painter was not afraid to make Saint Joseph a strong, handsome father. Joseph holds in his hand a blossoming staff and looks up to his own Father in heaven just as Christ look up at him. I love the austere solemnity of this painting. I think Ribera had a special gift at representing flesh. If you look closely, you can see that Saint Joseph has just the beginnings of a few fine lines around his eyes and on his forehead. It is as if we can read on his face the care he has lavished on Mary and Christ.


GWYN_S Joseph