Loading
In Sistine Chapel, Pope encourages artists to be ambassadors of beauty

.- Today Pope Benedict XVI extended a warm personal welcome to artists from all over the world who met with him in a private audience hosted at the Sistine Chapel. In a moving address he challenged the artists, as "custodians of beauty," to be "heralds and witnesses of hope for humanity."

Artists from many countries, who represented the gamut of artistic categories including architecture, sculpture, music, dance and film, met with the Holy Father this morning in the Sistine Chapel just off St. Peter's square. Around 250 artists, Catholics and non-Catholics alike, responded to the Holy See's invitation to all professionals in the arts to take part in the event.

The Pope read a moving letter to the group in which he invited the artists to "friendship, dialogue, and cooperation" with the church. Profusely citing a wide variety of artists' interpretations of beauty throughout history and also quoting the particularly art-conscious Popes Paul VI and John Paul II numerous times, Pope Benedict illustrated a simple message very clearly: with their vision and skill, artists have a unique ability to use their vocations to promote beauty in the world, which is a gift from God.  

The Pontiff explained this phenomenon, "thanks to your talent, you have the opportunity to speak to the heart of humanity, to touch individual and collective sensibilities, to call forth dreams and hopes, to broaden the horizons of knowledge and of human engagement."

He asked them to "be grateful, then, for the gifts you have received and be fully conscious of your great responsibility to communicate beauty!"
 
The Holy Father expounded on the need for beauty in the world as a source of inspiration, happiness and unity.

"Beauty, like truth, brings joy to the human heart, and is that precious fruit which resists the erosion of time, which unites generations and enables them to be one in admiration," he said.

Encouraging those who filled the Sistine Chapel to seek out opportunities to share this beauty with others, he advised them not to be afraid "to approach the first and last source of beauty, to enter into dialogue with believers, with those who, like yourselves, consider that they are pilgrims in this world and in history towards infinite Beauty!"

He added that they must not view this as a weakness, explaining that faith “takes nothing away from your genius or your art: on the contrary, it exalts them and nourishes them."

The address to the artists of the world echoed a similar call Pope Paul VI made to the artistic community in 1964 to assume  "individual responsibility, courageously and passionately, for a newer and deeper journey in mutual acquaintance and dialogue in order to arrive at an authentic ‘renaissance’ of art in the context of a new humanism."

In the year 2000, Pope John Paul II renewed this appeal in his popular Letter to Artists.

Concluding his visit, Pope Benedict left the artists with a final message to guide them in their work: "My wish for all of you, dear artists, is that you may carry this vision in your eyes, in your hands, and in your heart, that it may bring you joy and continue to inspire your fine works."

Journalists were not permitted inside the Sistine Chapel for the event, due to its small size.

Following the audience, CNA spoke with Alvaro Siviero, a professional pianist from Brazil, about how the audience received Pope Benedict's comments.  

"In the moments following the address," he said, "there was a tremendous silence for about 20 seconds, and then there was an explosion of applause. This lasted for two minutes. It was a great moment for the church and the art community."


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
20

Liturgical Calendar

April 20, 2014

EASTER SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION OF THE LORD

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 24:13-35

Gospel
Date
04/20/14
04/19/14
04/18/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 10:34a, 37-43
Second Reading:: Col 3:1-4
Gospel:: Jn 20:1-9

Homily of the Day

Lk 24:13-35

Homily
Date
04/20/14
04/19/14
04/18/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: