The Deaths That Drew Brother Mickey McGrath To The Saints

Brother Mickey McGrath is an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales based in Camden, New Jersey

CatholicMatch blogger Kerry Weber conducted a fascinating interview this past January for America magazine, where she works as associate editor. She spoke with award-winning artist Brother Mickey McGrath about art and inspiration and his favorite painting. What caught my ear this All Saints Day began around the 3-minute mark, when Kerry asked about his depiction of saints, and he told her:

“I like to both introduce people and reintroduce people to the saints – they were such an important part of my Catholic childhood and I loved those stories. …

But it was when my parents died that I had this whole new take on what the communion of saints is and what it is in our Catholic tradition and how these wonderful figures with terrific stories – especially the ones that they don’t teach you when they’re little. I love the human side of the saints, and that’s what I try to convey in my paintings and drawings of them, so they’re not just kind of pious, devotional images but real humans that are still with us, and that’s the message for everybody: ‘Well, take a new look at this person here; they may have something to share with you.’ When you hear their struggles and stories, it helps you walk through your own struggles better, I think.”

Listen to the full interview here. (Nice job, Kerry!) And leave us a comment below. How has the death of a loved one deepened your appreciation of the communion of saints? How has it influenced your search for a spouse?

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