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Melkite iconography serves as windows to the divine

  • Prayer card in a Greek Melkite Catholic's car in Amman, Jordan
  • Icons at St. George Cathedral, Amman, Jordan
  • Icon of the church's patron saint from the iconostasis at St. George Cathedral, Amman, Jordan.
  • Stained glass is not a traditional feature of the Byzantine style, but this one of St. George is far above the front entrance of St. George Cathedral, Amman.
  • The crucifix behind the altar in the sanctuary of St. George Cathedral, Jordan.
  • Altar and sanctuary behind the iconostasis at St. George Cathedral, Amman, Jordan.
  • Liturgy at St. George Melkite Catholic Cathedral, Amman, Jordan.
  • Exterior of St. George's Greek Melkite Cathedral, Amman, Jordan. The church, which is new, is in the Byzantine style.

Icons play a major role in the visual culture and spiritual life of Melkite Catholics. Much more deserves to be said about this than this site currently does — especially in terms of the way ordinary Melkite Catholics understand and experience iconography in their own lives. For the moment, some acknowledgement of the place of iconography needs to be made.   

Icons are understood within the theological tradition of the Church as more than just religious paintings, but as windows to the divine, a means of presenting holiness to the world. Icons are offered to believers so that they can pray through them. They represent the Father, Son, Trinity, the Virgin and Child, or important saints, among other themes.

Read more

Dick, Ignatios. “Sacred Art” in Melkites: Greek Orthodox and Greek Catholics of the Patriarchates of Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem, Roslindale, MA: (Sophia Press, 2004) 123-136.

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Footnotes