Spotlight on Fr. Marko Rupnik, SJ

Today’s post is about Fr. Marko Rupnik, SJ, the creator of the Year of Mercy logo and a famed contemporary Catholic artist. (And most importantly, a priest!)

We’re in the final month of the Jubilee Year of Mercy. Maybe you have wondered about the logo, which shows Jesus fireman-carrying a guy out of a subway tunnel.


The designer is a Slovenian-born Jesuit priest named Fr. Marko Rupnik. His work, which we will look at below, can be a little jarring to the modern, western eye. It seems to be very contemporary, though it is rooted in the Eastern iconographic tradition.

As for the Year of Mercy thing, you can see a real explanation here. I still think it’s a poor logo, but boy, people have some SCALDING  HOT  TAKES about this thing. (I actually do like how it stirred up all the Internet Sedevacantists.)

Rupnik’s best-known work in the United States is probably the Redemptor Hominis (Redeemer of Mankind) Chapel at the Pope John Paul II National Shrine, in Washington, D.C.

Here’s a photo of the reliquary chapel at the John Paul II Shrine in DC:


Another JP2 chapel by Rupnik is in Krakow, Poland. This video is long but the organ in the background is nice.


My favorite place is the Eucharistic Chapel at Madrid’s Cathedral of the Almudena. For me, it rivals Sainte-Chapelle in Paris for the place that feels most like stepping into Heaven. Pictures can’t begin to do it justice, when the lights are dim and the gold tiles catch the candlelight just right…

I’m interested to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment and tell me what you think!

Header photo is “Friars Preachers praying in the John Paul II Shrine” by Fr. Lawrence, OP, on Flickr, used under a Creative Commons License. He has some absolutely amazing photographs on his page, so go check them out!