Catherine Doherty Creative Process + Time-lapse Video

When I was growing up, we had a little calendar sitting in the kitchen window with a quote from Catherine Doherty for every day of the year. I remember my parents telling me to do the "duty of the moment". Her small snippets of wisdom blessed my childhood and continue to inspire and challenge me to this day. When I was asked to do a portrait of her, I felt no hesitation!

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The Hidden Saints Initiative

I was a fairly ordinary child, in that I didn't particularly enjoy doing chores. My family had a slogan for when one of us kids dared whine or complain. "What is the duty of the moment?" my parents would ask, and give a meaningful look. (Us older kids also happily applied it to the younger children.)

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“Saint Francis Xavier” Creative Process + Time-lapse Video

I will admit that when I was first contacted for this commission, it didn't immediately jog inspiration. I wasn't overly familiar with Saint Francis Xavier and he hadn't been on my radar as far as paintings I was planning on doing in the near future. But God had other ideas—within the space of a few weeks, his name came up unexpectedly several times, affirming that this was a painting I was supposed to do. His feast day passed, for one, and at the end of prayers one normal Rosary Group meeting, a friend asked for his intercession—not anyone else, just Francis, even though we almost never do the intercession of the saints. I can take a hint!

As I researched into his life a little more, I became captivated by his passion and enthusiasm. I borrowed the novel Set all Afire by Louis de Wohl and I officially fell in love with this incredible saint.

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What does it mean to be saved?

"For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God— not the result of works, so that no one may boast."
— Ephesians 2:8-9

Around the same time I began painting St Francis Xavier, an innocent comment on a Baptist friend's Facebook post sparked a friendly debate about the nature of justification and sanctification. I was about four messages in when I realised I needed to do more reading before I could adequately articulate my understanding of the mechanics of salvation. I soon found myself on an unexpected journey of intense reading, praying, and writing as I dug into a question I have often taken for granted: What does it mean to be saved?

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Why Should God Care About Your Problems?

Few obstacles keep people away from belief in God like the problem of evil. How can we claim that God is love when every day there are people dying in terrible accidents, children being abused, and every other kind of suffering imaginable?

To top it off, Christians have the audacity to ask God for help with the most trivial things—like finding their car keys or doing well in a job interview. Why would God care about your pathetic issues when there are kids dying somewhere else in the world?

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A Song, Your Brain, and Changing the World

I thought it a bit odd when I discovered that St. Cecilia—the patron saint of musicians—didn't actually sing or play an instrument. She was one of those saints whom I was familiar with since childhood; I remember seeing illustrations of her in books, her eyes raised wistfully to heaven, her fingers resting on harp strings or ivory keys. You would think that she had written a famous hymn or... something.

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Light Bearer (+ Time-lapse Video)

Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul.
— St. Augustine

Captivenia is an incredible Catholic medieval adventure camp for girls, with exciting theatrics, forest missions, medieval crafts, archery, tournaments, and a magnificent banquet. Throughout the week, the girls receive formation talks and the sacraments through Mass and confession.

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