If you remember Vision (A July 29Catholic News’ youth paper) you may remember some of Leona Fabien’s artwork from back in the day. If you are from St Patrick’s parish, you might also remember her from when she assisted with the Parish Newsletter, but little Leona is all grown up now and she is using her art as a testimony to her faith.
Leona is hilarious! I suppose a teacher has to be! She has been the art teacher at Bishop Anstey High school for over 14 years. She tells a funny story of how she ended up being part of the team responsible for painting the 60 feet mural at St Francis RC Church in Belmont. It was not her intention to get her students together in the midst of exams to paint the church wall but perhaps it was God’s plan. And really that is how Leona has lived her life, simply following God’s plan.
“I am inspired by nature “most of the pieces she said are nature-based and she is enthused to paint, plants, flowers, animals, and positive images. This she also believes is a link between her spirituality and her art because most of what she paints is a testimony to the creation of God. UWI has also never seen a more proud art student”, she said, “Thanks to UWI, I met a lot of wonderful and talented local artists like Ken Crichlow and Pat Bishop and they imparted their knowledge on us and gave us good skills to make us world-class”.
Leona said, “I chose art because I was good at it” then she reminisces a bit and laughs out loud, “ I was good at a lot of subjects eh, so I asked a friend in form 5, what do you think I should do in form 6 and she said, “you good at art!” so I did art!” All this is part of why she feels like this was divinely ordained,” because, that is where I met Sheila Edwards who encouraged and inspired me, so I continued”. While her foray into art seemed uneventful, she confessed, “ Art was definitely my calling”. She said, “For me, art is very therapeutic; when u look at the news and see all the terrible things happening in the world, I would just do art to take my focus off the negative things in the world and I believe it helps to heal you too”
So here is how we are going to do it.
1. Set aside 20 minutes in the day for the guided prayer experience
2. As you begin to prayer take a few minutes to open your heart and mind to God.
3. When you are ready, slowly look and notice the image, taking your time to let feelings and thoughts come to you as you take in forms, figures, colors, lines, textures, and shapes. What does it look like, or remind you of? What are your initial thoughts? What feelings are evoked?
4. Now, return to the image with an open heart and mind again. You may now experience new thoughts, meanings, and feelings. Start, exploring new meanings and feeling that come to you associated with the image. Be aware of any assumptions or expectations that you bring to the image. Regardless of your response to the image — delight, disgust, indifference, and confusion — contemplate prayerfully the reason for your response and what these responses might mean for and about you.
5. As you go deeper in this prayer, open yourself to what the image might reveal to you. What does the Spirit want to say, evoke, make known, or express to you in quiet meditation? What are your feelings, thoughts, desires, and meanings evoked by the image and how they are directly connected to your life?
6. Now, take the time to respond to God. Jot down in a journal the insights you want to remember, actions you are invited to take, wisdom you hope to embody, or any feelings or thoughts you wish to express. Bring your prayer to a close by resting in God’s grace and love.
Source info: https://www.patheos.com/resources/additional-resources/2009/07/praying-with-art-visio-divina