Prayer, 24x36, oil on canvas, 2017
Encounter, 30x40, oil on canvas, 2017
Journey, 24x36, oil on canvas, 2017
Prayer, 24x36, oil on canvas, 2017Prayer is of Fr. Bernardino Maria Soukup sitting in a room, praying. Photographer Jeffrey Bruno took the photo that inspired this painting as part of the first installment of his “24 Hours” series. I was immediately moved to paint this image because it perfectly captures the way I’ve witnessed the friars praying many times. They pray five hours throughout each day. It is a large part of their life and a reminder to me that without prayer we cannot grow closer to God.
Encounter, 30x40, oil on canvas, 2017Encounter represents the friars living out their call to help those in need. The face of the homeless man is obscured in this painting (which importantly respects his privacy); the fact that I cannot make out his face always reminds me that we should see Christ in every person who is suffering in this world. The friars made this part of their apostolic mission: to serve the materially poor, most especially the destitute and homeless. They live in poor and often unsafe neighborhoods where they run homeless shelters, soup kitchens and youth programs. They simply love these people and do the best to provide for their material and spiritual needs on a daily basis.
Journey, 24x36, oil on canvas, 2017Journey was inspired by a photo I took of Fr. Louis Leonelli while on a family retreat a few summers ago. That retreat had an enormous impact on me spiritually and Fr. Louis played a large role in that. I looked forward to listening to Father speak each day and watched closely as he tirelessly tended to everyone’s spiritual needs. I’ve titled this painting Journey on account of his personal story of conversion, which I’m still amazed by and have retold to others time and time again.
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