Sr Wendy Beckett RIPPosted on 2nd January 2019

All that we can really say is that Sr Wendy Beckett almost went home for Christmas. Here, at Redemptorist Publications, we were sad to hear of the death on 26 December of a hermit and prolific art historian for whom we had published four books.*

Sr Wendy became a household name, synonymous with art history, with an encyclopaedic love for, and knowledge of, her subject. She had a unique ability to describe a work of art in everyday language, touching the hearts of a vast audience through her writing, speaking and appearances on television, radio and in the press.

In a very real way, Sr Wendy was the interpreter between God, the artist and her global audience. She could look at a work of art and recognise God’s inspiration of the artist who translated that divine dialogue and vision into a painting, sculpture or other art form. Through her life of prayer and reflection, she translated the divine and human message into words that the world understood – and we loved her for it.

Sr Wendy spent her life proclaiming the Word who “became flesh and lived among us (John 1:14). It was entirely fitting that, having celebrated Christmas with her adopted community in the Carmelite convent in Norfolk, she went home to God on the feast of St Stephen. Stephen, one of the first interpreters of the Christian message, was also the very first of Jesus’ followers to lay down his life for that same message.

Here, at Redemptorist Publications, we hope and pray that Sr Wendy Beckett is now enjoying the indescribable beauty which any work of art could only prefigure. Thank you, Sr Wendy, for helping so many of us to see the loveliness present in our world.

*Sr Wendy’s books published by Redemptorist Publications

The Art of Mary (2013)

The Art of Saints (2013)

The Art of Faith (2007)

The Art of Christmas (2013)

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