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» Icons and Holy Cards

Mary Vesting St. John

Icon on Wood

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Item Number Description Price Each Quantity Total Action


ICA128 6" X 10" ICON ON WOOD


ICA228 8" X 13" ICON ON WOOD





Item Details:

There is a precedent in the tradition for the icon of Mary Vesting St. John. It is based on a portion of a larger icon which inspired the writing of Br. Claude’s work.

Wood-mounted icons are on 5/8" ProWood® Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) with a wood-look foil finish, with tee-slots milled in the back for easy hanging. Icons are finished in classic cherry to replicate the traditional icon red, in keeping with Byzantine tradition. (Ancient icon board edges were frequently coated with red bole, a form of clay). Each mounted icon comes with a descriptive pamphlet explaining the symbolism and history of the image.

Please allow 5-10 business days for orders of 20 or more icons.

Our icon designs are also available as unmounted prints in sanctuary-size enlargements up to 38 inches wide. The latest technology enables enlargement without sacrificing quality. We do not currently have the ability to mount these prints on wood or any other material. You may purchase your own frame from a custom frame shop. Call 800-889-0105 for pricing and ordering.

Theology and Symbolism

This icon portrays the Blessed Virgin Mary with St. John the Evangelist. John is in a white tunic with a gold clavi, the traditional symbol of a royal garment that would later be the model for the deacon’s dalmatic. John’s outer garment is a red cloak, the traditional garment distinguishing the Beloved Disciple. Red is a sign of passion. A white priest’s stole is placed on him by Mary. Mary wears maroon, symbolizing the human nature donated to Christ in the Incarnation. Three stars adorn this cloak on forehead and shoulders, which witness to her perpetual virginity before, during, and after Jesus’ birth. The hand of God is blessing them from the upper right, and is holding a scroll, with the Greek letters “IC XC” for “Jesus Christ.”

Traditionally, St. John cared for Mary at Ephesus after Jesus entrusted her to him, and him to her, from the Cross (John 19:26-27). This Beloved Disciple would have continued his “seminary training” with her, refining their theology together by their closeness to Jesus. Mary is both a symbol of the Church, who bestows the Priesthood of Jesus upon men chosen to continue his ministry, as well as the Mother of the Priest (Mater Cleri). Thus, Holy Mother Church clothes her priests in holiness, and the Blessed Mother intercedes for their vocations.

The hand of God is seen offering a scroll in the upper right of the image. This Manus Dei is a typical ancient and medieval way of depicting the intervention of God the Father. Jesus Christ made the face of God present in human form, but there has always been skittishness about depicting the Father. The hand of God is a sign of power, and here he bestows the Eternal Word dead and raised to the apostle John. This particular image also identifies the male figure as St. John, recalling a passage from the book of Revelation, which is traditionally credited to St. John: “So I took the little scroll from the hand of the angel and ate it; it was sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach was made bitter.” (Revelation 10:10). As the Rite of Ordination of Priests states: “Understand what you do, imitate what you celebrate, and conform your life to the mystery of Christ’s cross.”

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