Thursday, December 4, 2014

St. Barbara, pray for us.

Today, December 4th, we celebrated the patroness of our city, county, and university, Saint Barbara. Old Mission Santa Barbara was founded on this date in 1786.

We are delighted, privileged, and honored to exclusively feature Michael Aberle's painting of this holy martyr. Michael's painting includes not only her iconic tower but also the familiar Santa Barbara coastline.

Barbara the beautiful
Had praise of lute and pen:
Her hair was like a summer night
Dark and desired of men.

Her feet like birds from far away
That linger and light in doubt;
And her face was like a window
Where a man’s first love looked out.
Her sire was master of many slaves
A hard man of his hands;
They built a tower about her
In the desolate golden lands,
Sealed as the tyrants sealed their tombs,
Planned with an ancient plan,
And set two windows in the tower
Like the two eyes of a man.
--excerpt from G. K. Chesterton's "The Ballad of St. Barbara"
To read more click here.

Chesterton's poem relates the story of Barbara's adding a third window to her tower as a proclamation of her belief in the Holy Trinity, but he embeds this in lively verse narrative of twentieth-century warfare, because Barbara is the patron saint of field artillerymen.

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