Today's Gospel in Art - The women who accompanied Jesus

Penitent Magdalene detail by Donatello 1454 © Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence

Penitent Magdalene detail by Donatello 1454 © Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence

Gospel of 20th September 2019 - Luke 8: 1-3

Jesus made his way through towns and villages preaching, and proclaiming the Good News of the kingdom of God. With him went the Twelve, as well as certain women who had been cured of evil spirits and ailments: Mary surnamed the Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, Joanna the wife of Herod's steward Chuza, Susanna, and several others who provided for them out of their own resources.

Reflection on the Sculpture

I remember seeing this sculpture for the first time 15 years ago and couldn't quite believe it depicted Mary Magdalene. Compared to yesterday's painting where she is typically portrayed as a young, beautiful, attractive woman, this sculpture is almost the exact opposite. It shows Mary Magdalene's brokenness, fragility, scarred by her past life and present penance. No wonder this sculpture was received with astonishment for its unusual take on the subject and highly realistic looks, further enhanced by the fact this is a life-size sculpture, so as a viewer, one is almost interacting with the sculpture as if there is a real other person present in the room....

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Tags: Christian Art Today, Patrick van der Vorst, Donatello

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