Monday, February 10, 2014

Upcoming Event at the San Clemente Presbyterian Church

Recently, I was asked to participate in an "interactive visual journey through the Stations of the Cross". It's hard to relay my eagerness to secure a place in this venue, but suffice it to say that it's certainly consumed my thoughts for days and a week later, I've finished!  Browsing the internet for photos from movies, events and old paintings for inspiration, I came across photos from "reenactments", where I found the most inspiration.  From bits and pieces of several of them, "Distracted" was created.
"Distracted"  12" by 16" oil on canvas panel
I can't help but think about the people who witnessed the actual event, including Simon the Cyrene.  It becomes clear to me that this Simon was not such a "willing" participant.  He seems to have been just "traveling" through town when this horrific event took place.  Both in Matthew 27:32 and Mark 15:21 he was "forced"; and in Luke 23:21 he was "seized" to help with the cross.
Growing up in a Catholic home, I guess you could say I was "forced" to attend Mass with my family on Sundays and go to Catholic school for 12 years. (Believe me, I used those words and resented it at many times in my young life!)  Resentment caused me to walk away from my faith for years and do things "my own way".  Even though in later years, I go to a non-denominational Christian church here in Carlsbad,  I am forever grateful for the parents I had who shared their Catholic faith with me and my brothers and sisters.  I'm grateful I was "forced" to be a participant and to learn the story of the bible because in this world there are so many distractions!  As I painted, I imagined being each of the members of the "crowd".  I saw myself in every one; worried about my own comfort and protection, taking photos of events so I can "share" them, completely "missing" the point, "talking" while I should be "listening", not able to grasp what price was paid for my soul.

This will be an interactive stations of the cross that will take place Monday through Friday of Holy Week, from 10:00am-7:00pm.  Over a dozen local artists will have contributed pieces that uniquely express each station, from the Last Supper to Jesus being placed in the tomb.  It will be a silent and self-led experience that may take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour to complete.  

San Clemente Presbyterian Church
119 Avenida De La Estrella
San Clemente, CA  92672
phone: 949 492-6158

Original artwork is not available at this time.  Numbered and signed Canvas ($300) and watercolor paper ($200) giclees, (12" by 16" image size ) are available; contact the artist.


  1. Thank you for sharing your story with us. I love that you put so much of yourself into your paintings. This painting in particular speaks volumes. Thank you.

  2. I'm honored and you're welcome :)

  3. Rita - Im in a season where I am carrying a heavy cross (Matthew 16:24) But when I look at this piece I am humbled and quickly remember the heaviness of the Cross that bore the sins of the world. Your talent is being used to shine Him bright...what an honor! You shine bright! Now where can I buy it? AND I want to go!! I was just talking to my family about how much I LOVED the participating in the viewing of the stations of the cross. I can't wait!

    1. Thank you Alicia for your comment! If I do end up selling this piece (I've been considering how it can have the most impact and will be "showing it" for a while) you will be the first to know! You have truly been an inspiration to me as well my dear, and I'm so glad that we connected again after all these years!

  4. Rita, I enjoyed reading your own personal story. I think your painting is poignant, personal, and powerful. I think of the word Tetelestai--"paid in full."

    1. Thank you Karen for your sweet comment