Over the centuries, artists have repeatedly turned to the Holy Family of Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus as the inspiration for their creations. Among the most famous of these works is Michelangelo’s Doni Tondo, a circular masterpiece painted in the early 1500s and featured on our cover. One of the unusual aspects of this painting is the movement it depicts: Mary, who is seated, is handing the baby Jesus over her right shoulder to Joseph, who is behind her. How many mothers and fathers can see themselves in this familiar scenario of switching a baby from one set of arms to the other!
Paintings such as Michelangelo’s can help us view the Holy Family not just as subjects of beautiful art but as a real family who,...
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