“Where’s the room with the feet?” “I want to see the big painting…you know, the one with the feet…”
The mural that decorates our Encounter Chapel quickly became world famous. There seems to be no end to the “ooohhhhing” and “aaaaahhhhing” of tourists and pilgrims who walk into that chapel. And, undoubtedly, Daniel Carriola created a masterpiece.
But, really…it’s not about the feet. The central part of that mural is the hand, the hand of a woman – a woman with incredible faith. She is known as the woman with a hemorrhage or flow of blood and she believed that with a simple touching of Jesus’ garment she would be healed. Indeed she was not only healed, her life was completely changed, transformed, restored.
The hands of women are seen in artistic images from the lowest to the highest levels of Duc in Altum – from the hand of the hemorrhaging woman in the Encounter Chapel to the hands of Mary, the mother of Jesus, in the cupola of the Women’s Atrium. In the mosaics we see the hands of other women – Mary Magdalene, the wife of Jairus, and the twelve-year-old girl whom Jesus brought back to life. These visible images of female hands are reminders of the women of the Bible, but they also lead me to reflect on the women of faith who are the hands of Magdala today. They are women of faith who believe that with God all things are possible and who continue to give a “woman’s touch” to Magdala today.
September 3, 2018