The Catechetical Review - Communicating Christ for a New Evangelization

Art Notes: The Last Supper by Jacob Copista

Authored by Dr. Lionel Gracey in Issue #30.1 of The Sower
At first glance, this Last Supper might appear to be an ancient Byzantine painting. In fact, it is an illustration from a book of the four gospels, called a Tetraevangelo (four Gospels), by the nineteenth and twentieth century artist, Jacob Copista (1849-1914). his Last Supper comes at the end of Part Two and the beginning of Part Three of the Compendium. Here, again, is placed another liturgical, Eucharistic scene. We have already seen one, as expected, at the opening of Part Two, the part concerning the celebration of the Christian Mystery and for section two of that same part, introducing the seven sacraments. There is another liturgical piece of art in the part on prayer, section one, prayer in the Christian life. In other words the Eucharistic liturgy is essential for the healthy nourishment of our daily prayers and, here, for our daily living and relating to others. The reason why this scene is placed here is made clear in the text on the back of the picture: ‘The Eucharist is communion with Jesus and spiritual food to support the faithful in his daily struggle to keep the commandments’.

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This article is from The Sower and may be copied for catechetical purposes only. It may not be reprinted in another published work without the permission of Maryvale Institute. Contact sower@maryvale.ac.uk

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