Friday, January 13, 2006

The meaning of art

Art is meant to lift a person to a greater understanding of God and appreciation for His blessings in our lives. One of the greatest pieces of art in the world is the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican. Commissioned by Pope Julius II and painted by Michelangelo, the entire ceiling took from 1508-1512 to complete.

By far, the most significant part of the ceiling is where God stretches his hand out to Adam in a symbol of the creation of man. In the first story of creation, we read:

God created man in his image, in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them saying: "Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, and all the living things that move on the earth…"

God looked at everything he had made, and he found it very good.

This painting, thus, has a profound meaning for the understanding of human sexuality and God's plan for humanity. God does not imply in any way that part of "subduing" the earth is destroying the capacity to procreate. In fact, one sentence earlier, God commanded the male and female to "be fertile and multiply" and to "fill the earth!"

So, it is hardly shocking then that America's domestic terrorist and most perverted organization, the Planned Parenthood, has used this sacred painting as a means to spread the contraception lie. Making little key chains to hold a condom, one of them features this beautiful picture with a meaning that is the polar opposite: God handing Adam a condom. The message of the painting is twisted into meaning that God wishes for the man and woman to erase fertility, the first command given to mankind, from the beautiful expression of sexuality.

On the occasion of the completion of the restoration of these paintings, Pope John Paul II stated the following of the masterpiece known as the Sistine Chapel:

The frescoes that we are contemplating here introduce us into the world of the contents of the Revelation. The truths of our faith speak to us here from all sides. From them human genius took its inspiration undertaking to clothe them in forms of incomparable beauty.

But, in other news on a related topic, Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix, Arizona recently declared that all couples who marry in the diocese must go through a Natural Family Planning (NFP) instruction class prior to the marriage. Bishop Olmsted is the third bishop in the United States to make such a decree, following his brother bishops in Denver, Colorado (Archbishop Charles Chaput, OFM Cap.) and Fargo, North Dakota (Bishop Samuel J. Aquila).

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