Parish News & Information

Parish News & Information

Christ, the Divine Savior Icon

St. Paul of the Cross is honored to be the new home of the Christ, the Divine Savior icon

 

St. Paul of the Cross is honored to be the new home of the Christ, the Divine Savior icon which was written (icons are said to be written, not painted) by iconographer Joseph Malham. The icon was commissioned in 2006 by Fr. Louis J. Cameli, currently Cardinal Cupich’s delegate for formation and mission. This beautiful icon can be seen in the northeast stairwell of our Upper Church. The benefactors of the icon, Mr. John and Mrs. Arlene Puetz, are new parishioners of St. Paul of the Cross. We are grateful for their generosity and wish them health and blessings.

At the time of installation, Fr. Cameli gave a wonderful narrative on the icon, as follows:

He (Joseph Malham) drew his inspiration from one of the oldest representations of Christ. It is found in the monastery of St. Catherine in the Sinai desert, not far from where God gave Moses the Ten Commandments.

On either side of the halo surrounding Christ’s head are the letters IC and XC. These are actually the Greek letters representing Iesous Christos or Jesus Christ. Within the halo are smaller letters representing the words “the one who is,” a reference to God’s revelation of his name to Moses on Mount Horeb, “I AM WHO AM.”

The right hand of Jesus is formed in a double symbol. His right hand is raised in blessing and also in a gesture that symbolizes his two-fold nature as God and man. The left hand of Jesus holds a book. This represents his position as our divine teacher. He is seated on a throne as the pantokrator or the Lord of the universe. He is truly Christ our King. The main colors of blue and gold represent his royalty. The red, of course, recalls his passion and death. The eyes which look at us — and some would say follow us — along with the serene disposition of his face signal to us his loving acceptance of us and his providential care.

The word icon simply means image. In the Christian tradition, icons have been an essential element of prayer. They have been called windows to heaven. In prayer before an icon, one does not merely look upon it, but rather one looks into it. That peering into the image allows us to catch a glimpse of the humanity and divinity of the Lord mediated to us in shapes, symbols, and colors. Because of our faith in the Incarnation, the Word made flesh, Emmanuel or God-with-us, we can affirm the appropriateness of representations of the Lord, his Blessed Mother, and the saints as apt aids for our prayer.

Those who paint icons do so in a context of prayer and, sometimes, of fasting. Those who view the icons in faith do so in a spirit of reverence and prayer. The icon, then, is not simply an artistic representation of the Lord but an intimate connection with him.

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Contact Information

St. Paul of the Cross

320 South Washington Street
Park Ridge, IL 60068


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Phone: (847) 825-7605

Mass Schedule

UC = Upper Church

HFC = Holy Family Chapel

Monday - Friday

6:25 am (UC)

8:30 am (UC)

Saturday

8:30 am (UC) - weekday Mass

4:30 pm (UC) - vigil

Sunday

7:30 am (UC)

9:00 am (UC)

10:30 am (UC)

12:00 pm (HFC)