Saint John the Evangelist Icon
Mounted print icon of Saint John the Evangelist.
An icon of Saint John the Apostle and Evangelist is unique in that there is both a prototype for him as a young and an old man. Saint John became a disciple of Christ at a young age. But, he lived to be an old man, writing both a Gospel account and the Book of Revelation (as well as a few other canonical books). Icons usually depict a saint glorified from either the time when they died or from a significant event. But, because both are appropriate in the life of Saint John, his icon can depicts him as young or old.
A lot of what I especially love about this icon is found in the collaboration that its details represent. When I first presented this commission to the Men’s club from St. John’s, I explained the different options we had for the age of the saint. Given that most of the club’s men have white hair, my suspicion was that seeing this saint as an older man would be preferred. But, this was not the case.
In this icon of Saint John the Evangelist we are met by a young man. This is because the members of the club wanted the icon to be one that especially connected to the youth in the parish. As such, it represents a vision of what this church’s current members want to give to its future.
The other significant detail in this vein comes in its text. In this icon Saint John holds open his Gospel. The words written on its pages are often traditional, but there is also freedom here for some variation. In sitting down and reviewing our options with the parish’s priest, the words, “We saw His Glory, Full of Grace and Truth” (from John 1:14) were chosen. The saint’s firsthand account, and the truth it represents, are both especially relevant today. At a time when both the historic figure of Jesus Christ and the notion of there being truth in the world are in doubt, this icon of Saint John gives not only his presence, but also a witness, within the church.
The Original Icon
This icon of Saint John the Evangelist is in the Conestoga style and created primarily out of that region’s local colours and materials. The original icon was commissioned by the Men’s Club of Saint John’s for the church of St. John the Evangelist in Elora, Ontario.
|Dimensions||25 × 20 × 2.5 cm|