Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on the CHURCH

Thought for the Day – 7 August – Sacred Images

Thought for the Day – 7 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Sacred Images

sacred images - bacci 7 aug 2020

“There are two extremes to be avoided in venerating the images of Christ and the Saints.
In emulation of the ancient heresy of the Iconoclasts, there are some, who regard the veneration of images as a superstitious and idolatrous practice.
In support of their view, they quote from the Book of Exodus:  “You shall not carve idols for yourselves … you shall not bow down before them or worship them” (Ex 20:4-5).

The equivocation is obvious.
This prohibition refers to the images of false gods, not to the images of Saints.
It is the worship of idols which is forbidden, not devotion to the Saints.
There are examples in the Old Testament of the veneration of images and symbols, indicating the presence of God, such as the Ark of the Covenant, adorned by “two cherubim of beaten gold,” (Ex 25:18) and the bronze serpent mounted by Moses on a pole in the desert (Num 21:8).

From the early days of the Church, there existed in the Catacombs, representations of Jesus, the Blessed Virgin and the Martyrs and, the fact that they were adorned with halos, is a clear indication of the veneration with which they were regarded by the faithful.
The historian Eusebius, specifically mentions a bronze statue erected in honour of the Saviour, before which, the faithful prayed and were sometimes awarded with miracles.

Contrary to the accusations of some Protestants, therefore, this practice is not a novelty introduced by the Roman Church.
Moreover, the honouring of images is not idolatry because, it is not a direct adoration but, a relative and indirect veneration.
Homage is not paid to the actual statues or pictures but, to Christ, the Blessed Virgin and the Saints, whom the images represent.

“The images of Christ, of the Virgin Mother of God and of other Saints, are to be kept with honour in places of worship especially and, to them due honour and veneration is to be paid – not because it is believed that there is any divinity or power intrinsic to them, for which they are reverenced, nor because it is from them that something is sought, nor that a blind trust is to be attached to images as it once was, by the Gentiles who placed their hope in idols but, because the honour which is shown to them, is referred to the prototypes which they represent” (Council of Trent, Session 25).

The cult of images has, therefore, a solid theological foundation.
“We make images of holy men,” as St Cyril of Alexandria expressed it, “not to adore them as Gods but, as a reminder and a stimulus to ourselves to imitate them.   Moreover, we make images of Christ so that our love for Him may be more easily aroused” (In Ps 113:16).
Besides, being theologically correct, the practice is useful!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Author:

Passionate Catholic. Being Catholic is a way of life - a love affair both with God and Father, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, our most Blessed and Beloved Virgin Mother Mary and the Church. "Religion must be like the air we breathe..."- St John Bosco With the Saints, we "serve the Lord with one consent and serve the Lord with one pure language, not indeed to draw them forth from their secure dwelling-places, not superstitiously to honour them, or wilfully to rely on the, ... but silently to contemplate them for edification, thereby encouraging our faith, enlivening our patience..." Blessed John Henry Newman Prayer is what the world needs combined with the example of our lives which testify to the Light of Christ. This site will mainly concentrate on Daily Prayers, Novenas and the Memorials and Feast Days of our friends in Heaven, the Saints who went before us and the great blessings the Church provides in our Catholic Monthly Devotions. "For the saints are sent to us by God as so many sermons. We do not use them, it is they who move us and lead us, to where we had not expected to go.” Charles Cardinal Journet (1891-1975) This is a papal fidelity site. Loyal and Obedient to the Current Pope and to the Magisterium United With Him.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s