This last month I have had absolutely nothing to do … except restore Leonardo da Vinci’s painting named Salvator Mundi. Many things happened that I had to respond to but my main goal was to make a perfect print of that painting for a little event I hope to present at the Old Stone Church on Christmas Eve. That building was the home of the Unitarian Universalist church for several years before I moved to Bend, Oregon, the spring of 2011. I became a member shortly after moving all of my belongings from Berkeley, California. Our church had the good fortune to have enough money donated by our members to build a new structure on a lovely piece of property and that congregation has grown remarkably since moving there January 2015.
I was aware that the Spiritual Awareness Community (SAC) was meeting in the Old Stone Church at a separate time but I never attended a service until the UU’s had moved to their new site. As it happened I attended a service the very next week and have never missed a meeting since that date at either venue. Thus, I attend two religious services on Sunday, and an Atheist breakfast every Saturday, where we discuss similar issues but from a different starting point, and a couple of philosophical discussions weekly. Last month the SAC sold their rights to meet in the Old Stone Church and we will be having our last meetings on December 24 and the 31st. As the building may be worth more as property and after it is sold may be torn down and used for other purposes, I wanted to do something meaningful for the possible last Christmas Eve and thought that reading the Sermon on the Mount would be appropriate. I don’t believe I have a great reading voice so I have asked a friend to do the reading, and he agreed. The way this may work out is to put the Salvator de Mundi on an easel, covered until the time for the reading, and then as I read the introduction to the sermon remove the covering and as the appropriate time comes to speak have the reading begin. With the right lighting and other setups it could be a profound experience. Most people I have talked to have never heard the sermon spoken out and many admit to having never read it. Thus I wanted to make a really good life-size portrait of Jesus to be on the stage as the sermon was read.
The picture above is available from me in much, much better quality.
The Sermon on the Mount will be the King James Version, which has the word phrase “…should do unto you, do you even so unto them”