THE WAY OF BEAUTY
Vision of St. Francis
THEME: God created us for a mission
FOCUS OF THE MEDITATION: By fulfilling our unique role in God's plan, we hope to recognize and embrace our individual paths to heaven endowed with the theological virtues—faith, hope, and love.
Vision of St. Francis
Pietro da Cortona
"What is our purpose and what prompted God to create each of us? The answer is simple—God has created us for heaven. You have one goal, one dream, and one destiny: to be with God, who loves you for all eternity in heaven."
"In this gorgeous image by Pietro da Cortona, we view all the splendor of heavenly treasure, Jesus Christ, set amid a luminous cloud of glory."
"In the center of the painting, we see St. Francis reaching out to take the Child from Mary's hands... Francis is a mirror of our prayers. Like us, he has little to offer but everything to gain." This act of Jesus extending his plump little hand "represents how Christ longs to reach out to us in prayer by coming into our hearts and abiding there with light and love."
And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.
You know the commandments: ‘Do not kill, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’”
And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have observed from my youth.”
And Jesus looking upon him loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing; go, sell what you have, and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.”
At that saying his countenance fell, and he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions.
PRAYER AND REFLECTION
"Is God calling you today for a special mission or purpose? Keep in mind that no job is too small in the sight of God."
"Make a ist of your gifts and thank God for giving them to you. Ask God to help nurture your creativity and light, that you might share generously with other the life that you have been given."
The comments above are taken from Meditations on Vatican Art by Fr. Mark Haydu. To truly enter into this Visio Divina, I suggest purchasing the book as each masterpiece comes with a complete description, prayer and reflection, and spiritual exercise.