use of pictures and statues (iconography) in churches has always been used as a way of telling a story visually. It's no different then when parents use picture books to explain things to small children. The icons (statues and pictures) serve to visually tell a story, and remind people of some Christian truth.A previously published pen and ink drawing (icon) of the Beggar Christ and Vincent de Paul by Meltem Aktas caught my attention. A copy of her work is displayed in the meditation room at St. Mary’s Hospital Pavilion (oncology clinic) in Grand Junction, CO. It certainly gave me pause after studying this icon and reading the poem associated with the drawing.
On the back of this framed illustration is a poem written by Jennifer Gordon for the 10th anniversary of Colorado Vincentian Volunteers that explains Aktas' rationale for creating this piece of art:
This is my rendition in watercolor (5"x7") of the original painting by Aktas that I completed in 2007.
In unfamiliar streets I wander laden
With a loaf so full
That surely there will be enough for all.
In the same streets we meet.
I see your clothes, Your eyes, and think, “Aha!
Here is one who needs me.”
With a smile I hope is warm
I offer you bread
Only to know that the piece you give me
Is exactly what I did not know I needed.
It is displayed in the living area of our home and is a reminder of my professional and volunteering affiliation with the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth (Kansas).