Our World Needs Beauty, Pontiff Tells Artists

Says Charity Makes Life a Work of Art

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VATICAN CITY, JULY 7, 2011 (Zenit.org).- If truth shines in the beauty of art, then it can awaken in mankind the desire to make his whole existence something beautiful and true, says Benedict XVI.

The Pope made this reflection Monday when he addressed artists who had contributed to an exhibit in honor of his 60th anniversary of ordination, which he celebrated June 29.

The exhibit, in Paul VI Hall, features painters, sculptors, goldsmiths, musicians, architects, photographers and poets from the 20th century.

It is titled «Lo Splendore della Carità; La Bellezza della Verità» (The Splendor of Charity; The Beauty of Truth). And the exhibit, sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Culture, is another step in the Pontiff’s efforts to reunite the Church with the world of art. It concretely offered a follow up to a meeting the Pope had with artists in the Sistine Chapel in November 2009.

In his address, the Holy Father reflected precisely on the title, saying that genuine beauty springs from a «symphony,» a «perfect harmony of truth and charity.»

Such a genuine beauty, he said, is «capable of awakening admiration, wonder and true joy in men’s hearts.»

The Pontiff proposed that the world is in need of truth and charity, to overcome lies and egoism. «We need the beauty of truth and charity to reach the depth of our hearts and make them more human,» he said.

In this context, Benedict XVI made an appeal to artists: «Never separate artistic creativity from truth and charity; never seek beauty far from truth and charity, but with the richness of your genius, of your creative impulse, be always courageous seekers of truth and witnesses of charity.»

The Holy Father invited them to make truth shine in their works.

He said that in this way, the beauty of their artwork «awakens in the sights and hearts of those who admire them the desire to make their existence, all existence, beautiful and true, enriching it with that treasure that never diminishes, which makes of life a work of art and of every man an extraordinary artist: [the treasure of] charity, love.»

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Full text: www.zenit.org/article-33023?l=english

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