Saint Anthony of Padua

"In religious imagery, Saint Anthony of Padua is especially beloved; apart from the Holy Family, he is the probably the only saint depicted with the Christ Child and in a particularly tender way: he is often shown holding a book (presumably the Bible) in one hand and the Child Jesus in his other hand while stalks of white lilies (representing purity, innocence and integrity) are present in the foreground. But what is noticeable in these depictions is the fact the Child Jesus tenderly puts his hand on the saint’s face, as if to simultaneously embrace him and bless him. It is a picture that evokes a child’s love toward his parent and the parent's love toward his child. As a matter of fact, statues have depicted this scene ever since the 17th century. But it is no mere pious representation: it really happened in the saint’s lifetime. One night the Divine Child visited Anthony, kissed him and told him that He loved him. Anthony, in that visitation, was entrusted with the Child Jesus and the lilies that are always depicted in religious art represents that trust and divine favor. It is no wonder that such a representation is so loved; it expresses the want of the human heart." – Joseph McAuley, from here. Stained glass window from the Mercy Convent chapel in Albany, NY.

Link da imagem:
Fonte: Lawrence OP

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