A 2017 tribute to John McCain in art: Christ, Our Mother heals the faithful Centurion’s pais

Christ, Our Mother heals the faithful Centurion’s pais. ©2017 Alfred Eaker.

A tribute I paid to Sen. John McCain about a year ago, casting him as the Centurion in “the Gospel of Christ, Our Mother “ ( a series which cast Christ in the symbol of Julian of Norwich’s Christ, Our Mother ) although I didn’t always agree with him politically, McCain was the last of the Rockefeller Republicans – a moderate- who believed in reaching out and working with those of different ideologies and who refused to mantle a fundamentalist attitude of towing the party dogmatic line.

In the narrative, a Roman centurion goes to Christ and asks Christ to heal an ill servant. Christ agrees and gets up to leave. The centurion stops Christ and says, “ No, you do not have to leave. Just say the word and my servant will be healed.” Christ marvels at this and says, “ I have never seen this kind of faith in all of Israel. Your servant is healed.” And he was. This is the moment the centurion thanks Christ. Christ as mother is a metaphor, which comes from the 14th century mystic , Julian of Norwich who essentially said Christ was as maternal in his empathy and love as he was paternal . So, in this contemporary setting , I cast Christ as mother, McCain as the centurion. It’s kind of a reflection of McCain’s bipartisanship, sticking to his guns of being a maverick, and his faith in country.2017 Alfred Eaker

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