Catholic Church teachings as we know them were once considered unchangeable but because of newly discovered texts and the contemporary phrasing of old theology. We cannot help but continually reexamine who we are in God. There is a movement underway for a more modern Catholic ideology about women’s issues inside the church and out. I have created, a powerful book, In Light of Women, filled with Byzantine Icon Paintings which fit perfectly into contemporary conversations about theology, and women.
The visual language of the sacred art of iconography has cultivated my rebellious spirit. The book highlights a new attitude: that women can stand equally beside men in a more contemporary and integrated vision of the world. Christ’s teachings regarded women in a variety of roles and the consequences of editing them out of theology have hurt everyone. I am deeply respectful of the iconography tradition and knowledgeable of its long history. there is no harm or heresy in opening discussion with the male-dominated church landscape of today’s theology.
In Light of Women 72-page book incorporates 24 full-color icons
The images are juxtaposed with text that includes religious history, religious context, and my reflection inspired by my meditation and thoughts during 25 years of dedication to this ancient technique and prayer form. Millers New Byzantine Icon Painting, Theology and Women are explored in her contemporary collection of icons, done in the ancient medium of tempera which utilizes a mixture of egg yolk and ground earth pigments. The book includes a thorough introduction and three distinct sections that build to my most dynamic and contemporary works highlighted in the book.
Part 1, Mary Icons; explore the history of Mary’s image in New Byzantine Icon Painting through the tradition’s most popular images of her.
Part 2, The Gospel of Mary Magdalene; explores icons that were inspired by the Gnostic text with some creative insights from traditional theology.
Part 3, Feminine Voice; explores classic icons. Classic theology, with women placed in historical events to complete a more current understanding for all gender’s involvement in the story of Christ.
This book In Light of Women will prove to be New Theology, a Women’s Unexpected Treasure.
The book is timely, important, interesting, with new perspectives and questions to be asked. In the time of Christ, I like to think any woman named Mary was special. Mary was the name given to women who were teachers, intelligent, healers, mystics, and more. Mary walks with us in this new age and is just beginning to speak.
The book of contemporary Byzantine Icon Painting lends itself as a great resource for book groups and women’s studies, or lectures to stimulate dialogue one icon at a time.
For more information about Mary Jane Miller and her wonderful ministry, visit her blog at San Miguel icons. You may find out about her books at Mary Jane Miller at Amazon and you can follow Mary Jane at Facebook and Twitter. Mary Jane’s wonderful workshops have been suspended due to Corona stay tuned at Sacred Icon Retreats.