Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Tuesday 19 January |
Saint of the Day: St. Branwalator of Jersey
home iconArt & Culture
line break icon

Artist creates "Christ the Healer" icon for sufferers of coronavirus

Christ the Healer

Catholic Theological Union at Chicago | Facebook | Fair Use

J-P Mauro - published on 05/12/20

The artwork is accompanied by a prayer penned by Auxiliary Bishop Mark A. Bartosic of Chicago.

With church buildings closed, there’s not much demand for new artwork for display in empty halls, but still iconographer Joseph Malham has been hard at work during the coronavirus shutdown, writing a beautiful new icon of Jesus titled “Christ the Healer.”

Catholic News Service reports that the wonderful new piece of sacred art measures 3 ft-by-4 ft and took Malham about three weeks to complete. He explained that the icon is meant to bring comfort to all those who have been affected by COVID-19, from medical professionals to those who have contracted the virus and their loved ones. He said:

“Like the rest of the world, I thought, ‘I can sit around listening to my own fears and anxieties and uncertainties or I can do something creative. That’s when I came up with doing this for the sufferers of COVID-19.”

Malham noted to CNS that the writing of “Christ the Healer” was particularly challenging, because he did not have access to the traditional materials used for the ancient Christian process. He said that the board was scrap wood, in lieu of gold leaf he had to use simple gold paint, and similarly without access to gesso — the standard base ground of most icons — he had to make do with plain white paint.

The image of Christ seems to be saddened by the sickness he is witnessing and he looks directly at us as he joins our suffering.

Malham’s work caught the eye of Auxiliary Bishop Mark A. Bartosic of Chicago, who wrote a prayer to be released in tandem with “Christ the Healer.” He shared the prayer for intercession during times of sickness on the Catholic Theological Union at Chicago’s Facebook page:

O Lord and Master of life! Temple of that Spirit who ponders the deep things of God, Pierce the gloom of these days With the radiance of your gaze. Strengthen our hearts for battle Give courage to your sisters and brothers Who stand, as always, in need of healing. Intercede for us with your Father, Who are blessed for the ages of ages, Amen.

Commenting on the icon, Bishop Bartosic told CNS:

“We always stand in need of healing,” Bishop Bartosic said. “Even when we’re not in a pandemic. We don’t always realize it until there’s a crisis. What we’re asking for now is what we should ask for every day of our life.”  
Tags:
ArtCatholicCoronavirus
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
DAD, HOW DO I?
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the dad who's teaching basic skills on YouTube for kids with...
2
LUXOR FILM FESTIVAL
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful 1-minute film about...
3
Fr. Patrick Briscoe, OP
Reasons Catholics should read the Bible
4
SAINT RITA CASCIA
Bret Thoman, OFS
Traces of miracles remain at the birthplace of St. Rita of Cascia
5
POPE JOHN PAUL II
Philip Kosloski
St. John Paul II's formula for defeating evil in the world
6
Fr. Patrick Briscoe, OP
'An American Blessed': A documentary to thank God in 2021
7
FORGIVING COUPLE
Bret Thoman, OFS
An exorcist teaches 4 steps to forgive
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.