Blasphemy: Catholic University Features Painting of George Floyd as Jesus Christ
painting by iconographer Kelly Latimore envokes Christian imagery
A prominent Catholic university in the United States has endorsed a painting depicting Jesus with the face of George Floyd.
The painting by iconographer Kelly Latimore envokes Christian imagery of Pieta, showing the dead body of Jesus lying in the Virgin Mary's arms.
But Latimore’s version depicts Floyd as Jesus.
The Catholic University of America (CUA) welcomed the painting in its School of Law in May.
The painting was later put on display at Mary Mirror of Justice Chapel.
“The icon has no place at The Catholic University of America; it is blasphemous and an offense to the Catholic faith, but it is not surprising at all that it was put there,” a junior at CUA told conservative news website The Daily Signal.
“It is just another symptom of the liberalization and secularization of our campus.”
According to the report, several people were not happy with the painting, but most of them requested to remain anonymous out of fear of reprisal.
Critics who allowed their names to appear in the report included:
Blayne Clegg, a sophomore student and former president of College Republicans
Jared Jagiello, a member of the university’s Student Government Association.
“George Floyd is not Jesus Christ,” Clegg was cited as saying.
“He is not a saint, nor a martyr, and to, in any way, compare him to the sinless son of Almighty God is to do a damning disservice to the vast majority of Catholics and Catholic theology.”
The outlet said it had reviewed a video of the May welcoming ceremony.
In the video Father Jude DeAngelo, university chaplain and the director of Campus Ministry called on God “to sanctify and bless this icon which we will use in the adoration of the Blessed Mother."
According to the outlet, another print of the same painting also hangs in the offices of Campus Ministry in Caldwell Hall.
Latimore made his name for using Orthodox Christian iconography in depicting famous public figures.
Many of his painting features figures in the civil rights movement like Martin Luther King Jr.
But the Catholic Church has praised his work.
The painting ‘Refugees: La Sagra-da Familia,’ which depicted Joseph, Mary, and Jesus as refugees from Latin America, was chosen for the cover of ‘A Stranger and You Welcomed Me,’ the booked penned by Pope Francis.
"Mama" was painted by Latimore in direct response to the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020.
“This nonanswer frustrated the hell out of a lot of people,” he said.
“It’s them trying to protect God, and we can be pretty sure that when we try to protect God, we’re creating an idol.”