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USCCB News Release Archives

January 25, 2010

Catechism Expert for U.S. Bishops Explores the Place of Christian Art in the New Evangelization in Recent Book

WASHINGTON—Christian art can serve as a visual Gospel in a visual culture, according to a new book by Jem Sullivan, Ph.D., interim director of the Secretariat of Evangelization and Catechesis for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

In The Beauty of Faith: Using Christian Art to Spread the Good News, published by Our Sunday Visitor, Sullivan argues that the Church’s two-thousand-year-old traditions of Christian art can still serve as powerful means of evangelization and catechesis especially with young people immersed in a culture of images through television, the internet, virtual networking and mass entertainment.
“This project began several years ago and in an increasingly image saturated culture that daily surrounds us its message is particularly relevant,” notes the author. Sullivan invites the reader to prayerfully reflect on Christian art through an adaptation of the practice of lectio divina, a method of prayerfully reading Scripture. This adaptation of lectio divina is inspired by the tradition in Eastern Christianity of praying in the presence of icons.
Jem Sullivan is an educator, speaker and writer. She has written on Christian art and culture for a variety of Catholic publications. She also wrote a Study Guide for the U.S. Adult Catholic Catechism.
Keywords: Evangelization and Catechesis, Jem Sullivan, Christian Art, Our Sunday Visitor

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