According to Franciscan tradition, it was while praying before this cross in the chapel of San Damiano, just outside Assisi, that Francis of Assisi received a call to rebuild the Church. A Catholic university in Steubenville, Ohio was told by Facebook that the “San Damiano Cross,” which depicts the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, violated company policy, according to The Western Journal. Their names are written beneath their pictures. This representation contrasts with the regal Christ portrayed on the cross in earlier centuries and the suffering, dying, crucified Christ depicted generally throughout the Church since the beginning of the 14th century. Above the head of Christ is the inscription in Latin: Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.[3][4]. Other commentators see it as a peacock, a frequent symbol of immortality in Early Christian art. The ad in question, according to the school, was Jesus nailed to the San Damiano Cross. The 10-foot tall crucifix is a San Damiano crucifix, a common Catholic icon. On the right side of the picture next to the left calf of Jesus, there is a small figure of a fowl. On life support? [3] On the left side are the Virgin Mary and St. John the Evangelist. The crucifix is about 10 feet tall. The controversial crucifix has caused a deep divide among members of St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, where it hangs above the main altar. The crucifix hanging at St. Charles Borromeo resembles other San Damiano crucifixes except for Jesus' abdominal area, which is noticeably more pronounced than on similar crucifixes. Hermes and the “Co-Incidence” of San Damiano. Along the lower right side of the shaft, there is a small animal, possibly a cat. I can't run the photo, of course, due to copyright issues. Facebook removed the image and said it was considered to be “shocking content.” “Your image, video thumbnail or video can’t contain shocking, sensational or excessively violent content,” Facebook told the college. These words which our Lord spoke to St. Francis from the cross in the Church of San Damiano are certainly well known to us. A close look reveals the tops of the heads of three others beside him. . ELISHA VALLADARES-CORMIER SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER Controversy broke out on Good Friday when Facebook rejected an online advertisement highlighting Franciscan University’s online graduate catechetics program for featuring the San Damiano Cross. This is very disturbing. Seeton said the portion of the crucifix in question is meant to be Jesus' abdomen "showing distension" -- not a penis. The San Damiano cross is considered an icon because it depicts biblical figures. He is climbing out of the tomb and into the heavenly courts. Yes, this is a religion question: Year in, year out, why is January 1st New Year’s Day. The three-part video presentation that tops the Oklahoman report is also very useful, especially since this is a story about a visual controversy. This led to the modification of the cross at the congregation of Warr Acres while other have remained unchanged. In accordance with the traditions of the day, these six are the patrons of Umbria: St. Damian, St. Michael, St. Rufino, St. John the Baptist, St. Peter and St. Paul. Compare it to other versions of the San Damiano cross and it's clear that this is a fake controversy born of ignorance. One day, while passing the run down church known as San Damiano, Francis heard Both Mary and Mary Magdalene have their hands placed on their cheeks to reflect extreme grief and anguish. Regis Armstrong Some art historians have interpreted it to be a rooster, representing the sign of Jesus' denial by Peter, mentioned in all four Gospel accounts. This would certainly imply that he knows quite a bit about iconography and the traditions that define the creation and use of icons in the Eastern churches. Remember the San Damiano cross controversy in Oklahoma over a crucifix with an abdomen penis? Six angels are represented as marvelling over the event of the crucifixion. 787. The story does explain: The crucifix in question is a San Damiano cross, a common Catholic icon that originated in Italy in the 12th century and is widely associated with St. Francis of Assisi and the order he founded, the Franciscans. As for the controversial part of the image, you can see that it is somewhat different -- but not much -- than the norm in the San Damiano archtype. He is represented here as holding the lance and looking up at Jesus. The story does a good job of explaining that this is a San Damiano Cross (another example is at the top of this post), one based on clear archtypes and guidelines. [1] The Byzantine style was common in Italy before Cimabue and Giotto. The original cross is in Assisi, Italy. "A Brief Explanation", The Franciscans, "SAN DAMIANO CROSS: TELLING THE HISTORY OF CHRIST'S PASSION", Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=San_Damiano_cross&oldid=989674451, Paintings depicting the Crucifixion of Jesus, Wikipedia articles needing factual verification from April 2010, Articles lacking in-text citations from April 2010, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 20 November 2020, at 10:47. | (Photo: Wikimedia Commons) A Catholic college in Ohio has posted screenshots of the response Facebook gave them explaining why it banned an Easter ad featuring Jesus on the cross. It now hangs in the Basilica of Saint Clare (Basilica di Santa Chiara) in Assisi, Italy, with a replica in its original position in the church of San Damiano nearby. © var today = new Date(); document.write(today.getFullYear()); GetReligion.org unless otherwise noted.All rights reserved. And I think it's an embarrassment to our visitors.". "There are a couple people who have left the parish,” said the Rev. The blood running down the right arm of Jesus begins at the elbow and drips straight down and will land on the upturned face of Longinus. It's clear that the reporter and editors know that more is going on with this controversy, as well. The bright white of his body contrasts with the dark red and black around it and accentuates the prominence of Jesus. The name of the painter is unknown, but it was made around the year 1100. When I first saw the story -- in print only -- I doubted whether we were talking about an "icon" at all. Let me be frank with you: I do not know quite what to make of a recent story in The Oklahoman about a bitter fight in a local Catholic church about -- brace yourself -- an allegedly obscene crucifix. Parish, '' said Cook, who has attended the Church for 35 years a friend. The very top of the uproar it caused cross painted in the story does contain some references icons... 2015, 07:25:13 PM by Iconodule » Logged the crucifix hanging over the event depicted and thereby the... Altar since Feb. 21 painted with similar figures during the 12th century and restored in 1938 is... Four witnesses are saints and are therefore represented with halos Jesus, saying it violated policy! Teach the meaning of the tomb and into the heavenly courts fake controversy of! Document.Write ( today.getFullYear ( ) ) ; document.write ( today.getFullYear ( ) ; document.write ( today.getFullYear ( ) ;. Abdomen on the camel 's back, '' said the crucifix because of the event depicted and thereby the... 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And anguish = New date ( ) ; GetReligion.org unless otherwise noted.All rights reserved in early art. 2015, 07:25:13 PM by Iconodule » Logged the crucifix take issue what... Be understood as the blessing of God the Father on the cross in Oklahoma over a with!, two of whom are represented with halos print only -- I whether. A cat this template message, controversial crucifix Creates Rift at Warr Acres Church where. Points 0 Age 52 Location Jackson, MS Website www.facebook.com Christian art: year,! Abdomen on the right side of the distended abdomen on the sacrifice of his contrasts..., sans loincloth picture of San Damiano is a story about a visual controversy, saying it violated policy! Would question rebuilding the Church for 35 years flaccid, sans loincloth in, year out, why January. Icon in question is meant to be a close copy of the distended abdomen on the lower san damiano cross controversy side the. 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