It may be over a year away, but Neilson Carlin has already been chosen for the opportunity to show off his work at the eighth World Meeting of Families to be held in Philadelphia Sept. 22 to 27, 2015.
Carlin was contacted by Bishop John MacIntyre of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to create a painting of the Holy Family.
The artwork, which will be 4 feet by 5 feet, is going to be an oil painting and will be on permanent display at the Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul in the city once the event is over.
It’s fitting MacIntyre chose Carlin because when the artist was a boy, he wanted to be a Catholic priest, but it wasn’t until his adolescence when he realized he loved to paint more.
Carlin specializes in portraits, figuratives and still life paintings and has works in Maryland, Delaware, Wisconsin and right at home in Kennett Square. He also owns a school, Studio Rilievo School of Classical Painting, in Kennett to help teach the next wave of artists in the classical realist tradition.
The World Meeting of Families was started in 1994 by Pope John Paul II and has sought to strengthen the bonds of family across the globe.
The last one, held in June 2012 in Milan, Italy, drew hundreds of thousands to the city and had more than one million attending the Holy Father’s Mass. Each meeting has a theme, with this year’s being “Love is our mission: the family fully alive,” inspired by the Church Father, St. Irenaeus.
“I believe that this event has the power to transform, in deeply positive ways, not the just the Catholic Church, but our entire community,” said Archbishop Charles Chaput in a welcome letter. “(The support of Gov. Tom Corbett and Mayor Michael Nutter) for this gathering demonstrates how important this week-long event is not only to the city of Philadelphia, but to the entire Commonwealth.”
The event will also be streamed live on the website at www.worldmeeting2015.org.