|Gold Leafing details on Our Lady of Fatima|
Almost 100 years ago, Our Lady of Fatima appeared six different times to three peasant- children in Fatima, Portugal during 1917. Her visits were preceded by three apparitions in 1916 by an Angle of Peace who prepared the children for Our Lady's visits to come. The details are lengthy and the debates, discussions and interpretations have occupied many theologians and scholars for years. I encourage you to read the details of her visits and of the messages she shared. Generally, most agree the purpose of the apparitions was to help people grow in faith, hope and love. Since the birth of Christ, we have had the option to choose what is good and to know evil doesn't have the last word. "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world."(John 16:33) Our Lady of Fatima asks us to trust in this promise.
|The base of the statue before gold leaf is added|
|The gold leaf details added|
Our Lady of Fatima statue is usually shown standing on a cloud-like base, wearing a white gown and mantle trimmed in gold with a rosary and often a crown. The statues can vary depending on the simplicity or embellishment of the clothing. I use gold leaf on the edge of her gown and on the statue's base and other details. To keep her story authentic, I then glaze and age the painted surfaces to look like all eternity.
Christmas Eve is a time to remember the events around the Holy Family and the birth of Jesus. It is also a time to gather with family and friends and a time for gift giving. It's a time when I reflect on how my life has been filled with so many people who are kind and good and have met the challenges of life steadfastly and honestly regardless of what their faith may be called. It's a time when the message of Our Lady of Fatima speaks clearly above the din of the busy Holiday retail season to trust that no matter how many challenges, sorrows or burdens we carry, it is our choice to choose good over evil. Her message of love, hope and peace is seemingly, more profound in 2016 than it was a hundred years ago.