Kresta in the Afternoon – March 4, 2019 – Hour 1

+  The Story of Iraqi Christians

  • Description: The persecution of the church in Iraq is one of the great tragedies of the twenty-first century. It's one of the most ancient Christian communities on earth. Ed Condon joins us with a look at the lives of Christians in Iraq.
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    • The Church in Iraq

      The persecution of the church in Iraq is one of the great tragedies of the twenty-first century. In this short, yet sweeping account, Cardinal Filoni, the former Papal Nuncio to Iraq, shows us the people and the faith in the land of Abraham and Babylon, a region that has been home to Persians, Parthians, Byzantines, Mongols, Ottomans, and more. This is the compelling and rich history of the Christian communities in a land that was once the frontier between Rome and Persia, for centuries the crossroads of East and West for armies of invaders and merchants, and the cradle of all human civilization. Its unique cultural legacy has, in the past few years, been all but obliterated. The Church in Iraq is both a diligent record and loving testimonial to a community that is struggling desperately to exist. Filoni guides the reader through almost two thousand years of history, telling the story of a people who trace their faith back to the Apostle Thomas. The diversity of peoples and churches is brought deftly into focus through the lens of their interactions with the papacy, but The Church in Iraq does not shy away from discussing the local political, ethnic, and theological tensions that have resulted in centuries of communion and schism. Never losing his focus on the people to whom this book is so clearly dedicated, Cardinal Filoni has produced a personal and engaging history of the relationship between Rome and the Eastern Churches. This book has much to teach its reader about the church in the near East. Perhaps its most brutal lesson is the ease with which such a depth of history and culture can be wiped away in a few short decades. (learn more)

+  How Catholic Art Saved the Faith (2 segments)

  • Description: Not long after Martin Luther's defiance of the Church in 1517, dialogue between Protestants and Catholics broke down, brother turned against brother, and devastating religious wars erupted across Europe. Catholic theologians did what they could to restore order and clarify Catholic doctrine, but they also turned to another form of evangelization: the Arts. Was it successful? We talk with Elizabeth Lev.
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    • Elizabeth Lev
      Elizabeth Lev is an art historian living in Rome, where she teaches Baroque and Renaissance art as well as Christian Art and Architecture at Duquesne University. She's the author of How Catholic Art Saved the Faith: The Triumph of Beauty and Truth in Counter-Reformation Art.
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    • How Catholic Art Saved the Faith: The Triumph of Beauty and Truth in Counter-Reformation Art

      Not long after Martin Luther's defiance of the Church in 1517, dialogue between Protestants and Catholics broke down, brother turned against brother, and devastating religious wars erupted across Europe. Desperate to restore the peace and recover the unity of Faith, Catholic theologians clarified and reaffirmed Catholic doctrines, but turned as well to another form of evangelization: the Arts. Convinced that to win over the unlettered, the best place to fight heresy was not in the streets but in stone and on canvas, they enlisted the century's best artists to create a glorious wave of beautiful works of sacred art Catholic works of sacred art to draw people together instead of driving them apart. How Catholic Art Saved the Faith tells the story of the creation and successes of this vibrant, visual-arts SWAT team whose war cry could have been art for Faith's sake! Over the years, it included Michelangelo, of course, and, among other great artists, the edgy Caravaggio, the graceful Guido Reni, the technically perfect Annibale Carracci, the colorful Barocci, the theatrical Bernini, and the passionate Artemisia Gentileschi. Each of these creative souls, despite their own interior struggles, was a key player in this magnificent, generations-long project: the affirmation through beauty of the teachings of the Holy Catholic Church. Here you will meet the fascinating artists who formed this cadre's core. You will revel in scores of their full-color paintings. And you will profit from the lucid explanations of their lovely creations: works that over the centuries have touched the hearts and deepened the faith of millions of pilgrims who have made their way to the Eternal City to gaze upon them. Join those pilgrims now in an encounter with the magnificent artworks of the Catholic Restoration artworks which from their conception were intended to delight, teach, and inspire. As they have done for the faith of so many, so will they do for you. (learn more)

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