Monday, March 25, 2013

Iconodules the new iconoclasts?

I tend to agree with Fr. Thomas Hopko on this point. Because we can have innumerable icons on the walls in our modern age, that doesn't mean we should do so. Nor does an abundance of icons mean they will be treated with their due respect. Nor do I think, as Fr. Hopko states, that icons should be on books, booklets, clothes or the like. Icons are icons and not adornments.

(AFR) - As we celebrate the Triumph of Orthodoxy and the victory over iconoclasm, Fr. Tom Hopko gives a personal reflection on icons and their use and misuse.


  1. The impulse to festoon everything with icons is not new-- one can think of how often the cross was used in all kinds of designs in past ages.

    This also brings to mind an anonymous Nestorian polemical text from ca. 1000 CE that attacks Orthodox and Jacobites for putting icons absolutely everywhere, including in public baths....

  2. My family loves Icons. We have numerous Icons in virtually every room in the house. My six-year-old is comforted by Icons and they adorn almost every inch of her bedroom walls. We use them to assist in teaching about the Holy Scriptures and the lives of the saints. We incense them almost every night. Am I now to be labeled as an iconoclast?

    1. I don't think any of those uses are comparable to icon keychains or salt shakers.

    2. Thank God.

      I was getting a bit paranoid.

  3. As a Latin, I understand.

    So many of our sacred images have been reduced to religious-themed kitsch...and have thus been deprived of significance.

    And I still shudder when I see objects that may have been blessed, and are thus sacramentals, displayed as car ornaments or jewelry.

    That icons are sacramentals does make the reduction of them to kitsch even more deplorable. I guess Crucifixions and La Guadalupana are no longer "exotic" enough.