Illuminating the Mission: 7 Days – 7 Pages: Office of the Chaplains to turn a page of The Saint John’s Bible in Christ Chapel each day of Pope Francis’ historic visit to North America (September 21-27, 2015) Posted on September 19th, 2015 by

Day 1 -Creation 2As a symbol of unity and hospitality, the Office of the Chaplains will join schools, churches, libraries and hospitals in “Illuminating the Mission: 7 Days – 7 Pages”

Beginning on Monday, Sept. 21, and each day of Pope Francis’s historic visit to North America, the Office of the Chaplains at Gustavus Adolphus College will join institutions across the country by turning to the same page of The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Edition. This simple act will be a rich symbol of solidarity as the nation welcomes Pope Francis.

There are over 160 illuminations and 1,150 pages in the seven volumes of The Saint John’s Bible. The Office of the Chaplains will display the following illuminations in Christ Chapel each day.

Monday, Sept. 21                 Creation (Genesis)

Tuesday, Sept. 22               Abraham and Sarah (Genesis)

Wednesday, Sept. 23         Ten Commandments (Exodus)

Thursday, Sept. 24              Peter’s Confession (Matthew)

Friday, Sept. 25                    Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes (Mark)

Saturday, Sept. 26               Two Cures (Mark)

Sunday, Sept. 27                 Pentecost (Acts of the Apostle)

According to Saint John’s Rev. Michael Patella, OSB, who chaired the scholarship effort behind The Saint John’s Bible, “These illuminations were specifically chosen because they resonate with values Pope Francis holds dear: hospitality; concern for the poor, sick and marginalized; the dignity of all people; and care for creation.”

In addition to the illuminated pages, a reflection for each day will also be on display in order to enrich the intellectual examination and spiritual depth of the experience. As stated by Chaplain Brian Konkol of Gustavus Adolphus College, “This is a tremendous and important affirmation of our longstanding commitment to religious unity. In addition, this will provide our community with a unique opportunity to engage with the sacred text. We are honored and excited to participate in such a historic endeavor as Pope Francis visits North America.”

The Saint John’s Bible is the first handwritten and illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine monastery since the invention of the printing press in the 15th century. Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota, commissioned world-renowned calligrapher Donald Jackson, senior scribe to Her Majesty the Queen’s Crown Office at the House of Lords in London, England, to create this masterpiece. Gustavus Adolphus College received its heritage edition of The Saint John’s Bible through a generous gift from Åke Bonnier, bishop in the Diocese of Skara of the Church of Sweden, who served on the Gustavus Adolphus College Board of Trustrees from 2008-2015.


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