As I painted the series of icon-styled pictures for Advent I increasingly felt I wished to do one for Christmas also and so I have. Despite Christmas being a different season this is a companion piece to the Advent ones. It is four times the size of the Advent ones being A3 as opposed to A5. Like Advent Sunday we have the clear night sky, but this time with a single star proclaiming the arrival of the Messiah, the one whom Isaiah had foretold, one of the cast of thousands of stars foretold to Abraham, but brighter, outshinning all the rest.
The Light which has been looked forward in Advent has arrived, the radiant arrows piercing the darkness with the Word that as come into the world, yet has been in the world since the beginning proclaiming, love, peace and hope from generation to generation, from the beginning and before to the end and beyond. Some of the rays – which are done in metal – have themes from the following passage embossed upon then, for this why the Babe was born.
When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:
‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.’
And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he began to say to them, ‘Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’