Skip to comments.Rest on the Flight into Egypt (awesome painting with St Joseph)
Posted on 03/18/2019 9:04:11 PM PDT by DoodleBob
Rest on the Flight into Egypt, 1879
Luc Olivier Merson (French, 18461920)
71.8 x 128.3 cm (28 1/4 x 50 1/2 in.)
Frances Vrachos Gallery (Gallery 144)
Fleeing persecution at the hands of Roman authorities, the Holy Family takes refuge in Egypt. Joseph dozes beside a dying campfire while his donkey grazes on sparse desert grass. At left sleep the Virgin Mary and infant Christ, crowned with a halo of light. They lie in the arms of a sphinx, its eyes turned to the heavens, where the first stars begin to appear. A successful Academic artist, Merson never traveled to North Africa, but his use of archeological detail creates the illusion of an eyewitness account, breathing new life into a time-honored subject.
(Excerpt) Read more at mfa.org ...
Yea, I know...this isn't theology and a 19th century painting isn't Scripture. But what a message: the head of the Holy Family does not rest, he is alert and on guard, ready to protect his wife and adopted son. He does not recoil in horror from his vocation. He certainly has things on his mind, and the path is undoubtedly hard. But he DOES NOT QUIT.
During Lent, let us pray that all fathers and husbands follow this holy model of fidelity to our vocation. The nation - nay, world - would be a much better place. And if you are in Boston, go to the MFA and see the paining in person.
Is it likely that a Jewish family from antiquity would gather around and sleep below a giant pagan idol?
Oh, I’m not saying it is a perfectly accurate depiction of one of the many nights they spent fleeing murderers. Indeed, the Sphinx doesn’t look skyward. But if St. Joseph is awake despite exhaustion (I’m sure he wasn’t the one sitting on the donkey), his exercising of his vocation should be a model for us men and fathers all over the world.
Thanks, that's an old favorite of mine as well. And so is the MFA, mainly for the Egyptian collection.
I always wondered what became of St. Joseph since not much is written about him but he is an excellent example for all men to aspire.
St. Joseph died when Jesus was about 29, just before the beginning of his 3 year mission. He and Mary knew what Jesus would have to do on the Cross.
I had no idea they flew in.
You ever been in a desert, tired and worn out? Anything to lean on or give a bit of shelter is rare and appreciated. And considering that we are closer in time to them, than they were to the builders of the sphinx, I would say yes... without a doubt.
The people ruling Egypt then were far removed from that era too.
The quality of light is beautiful,
And your source for this?
Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich and Venerable Mary of Agreda.
No scriptural proof. Ill go with not much is said about Joseph and we really dont know what happened to him.
Thank you so much. I’ve never seen this. Stunning...I just ordered it online!
Not much is written about either Joseph OR Mary because they are not the subject of the scriptures.
And beautiful painting
The light is unbelievable.
Layover in Cairo?
Consider it was a landmark in the Holy Family’s travels to Egypt
It is a beautiful painting. But they were fleeing Herod, not the Roman authorities.
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