Rev. Dennis McNally, SJ, is a Jesuit artist who has directed more than a hundred individuals through the Spiritual Exercises in Daily Life (19th Annotation). His paintings have become a way of praying, and he offers them for your consideration. If they help any of us with using our imagination for entrance into contemplation, he is satisfied that he is doing his part for the Society's commitment to the arts that has developed over the centuries, offering the gift to others. On his blog or by email, he welcomes interaction. Fr. McNally has sold signed prints, as well as the originals.
Below are several of Fr. McNally's paintings for your consideration, along with his brief reflection on each.
I really wanted to capture my own first evening at the Sea of Galilee. This father and son are, in my mind, enjoying a wondrous moment together after trying the waters of the Galilee at sunset. Joseph and Jesus are blue in the shadow of the trees; they share a universal humanity. This father of the Lord is a humble person of no consequence; we are all like him, given the life of the Lord to protect, instruct, and cherish. Joseph is easy to identify with when contemplating the life of the young Lord in time and space. He is such a clear model. His own insecurities pale when facing the needs of his son...We can take courage from his example and talk like he might with the Boy.
This is a painting done as many of my recent ones are, from a dream. I often find images in dreams, no story, no narrative, but I realize it's an image for painting. This one started after a dream on the 12th of May 2-17. There were two dark areas, one in the upper right and one in the lower left. I couldn't imagine what the painting could be about until I realized the lovely blue was so peaceful. Unable to make sense of where to go with what I had in a few hours of painting, I went for a swim to cool my energized but confused mind-----and realized it was the 100th anniversary of the appearances at Fatima. I completed the whole painting in one day, a very rare experience for me. We all have miniscule messages in which we can see that God means what God says. In this one, the Virgin appearing to the children is so small yet in so wide a world of grace. She asks us always to seek peace.
October 5, 2020 — Registration is open for Jesuit Friends and Alumni Sunday, which is returning once again this year — this time online. Mass will be celebrated by Fr. Joseph O’Keefe, SJ, provincial of the USA East Province, and Fr. Adam Rosinski, SJ, assistant director of vocations.
The Season of Creation concludes on the Feast of St. Francis (Oct. 4). Cecilia Calvo from the Jesuit Office of Justice and Ecology and Brenna Davis from the Ignatian Solidarity Network will offer a special Eco-Examen that asks us to reflect on our personal relationship with creation, acknowledge and amend our ways, and promote ecological justice by standing in solidarity with those most impacted by environmental harm.
The Office of Ignatian Spirituality (OIS) is hosting two virtual info sessions for a new initiative call "CURA." The first session will be from 5:00pm-6:00pm on October 1, and the second will be from 12:00pm-1:00pm on October 14.
September 8, 2020 – This month Pope Francis is asking us to join him in praying for Respect for the Planet’s Resources. We pray that the planet’s resources will not be plundered, but shared in a just and respectful manner.
August 12, 2020 – These two Ignatian examens are intended to guide prayerful reflection on the role that race, racism, and racial bias play in our lives and society. The first examen is written for everyone. The second is written primarily for people who identify as white.
August 12, 2020 – In early March, Jesuit ministry changed nearly overnight. Emails poured in, summarized in the word “canceled.” Masses were canceled. Retreats were canceled. Even Holy Week, for a moment, seemed like it might effectively be called off. But with remarkable speed toward the end of the Lenten season—no doubt attributable to the adaptability innate to the Jesuit way of proceeding—the ministry of Ignatian spirituality moved online.
August 3, 2020 – This month Pope Francis is asking us to join him in praying for The Maritime World. We pray for all those who work and live from the sea, among them sailors, fishermen and their families. Our world cries out for healing and renewal. May we place our hand into the hand of the God who calmed the seas that his beautiful gift of creation may be restored and all whose lives depend on the fruits of the ocean be protected, this day and always. As one, may we rejoice and give thanks. Amen.