“If we deny our happiness, resist our satisfaction,
we lessen the importance of their deprivation.
We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure,
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless
furnace of this world.”
A quote from Jack Gilbert’s poem “A Brief for the Defense”
We remember and deeply appreciate the ultimate sacrifice of our fallen friends.
- “Our nation owes a debt to its fallen heroes that we can never fully repay, but we can honor their sacrifice.” –Barack Obama
If you’re looking for unique gifts for all 7 sacraments, look no further than Creator Mundi in Denver. We offer a variety of Catholic art pieces hand-crafted by European and American artisans. We look forward to helping you celebrate your special someone during this sacred time.
Symbols For Each Sacrament
Sacred symbols are at the heart of the unique artwork we sell. While many pieces would make suitable gifts for multiple occasions, sometimes you’re looking for a gift for a specific sacrament. Here are some of our products that can resonate with one of the seven sacraments each in particular:
- Good Shepherd Cross
- Round Holy Spirit Dove And Branch Pendant
- Bread of Life Cross
- Resurrection Standing Cross
- Wedding Wall Cross
- New Beginning Cross
- Angel of Remembrance Pocket Prayer
The Sacraments Of Initiation
These religious ceremonies mark the beginning of one’s journey with Christ. Baptism is how the stain of original sin is washed away and become part of God’s family. Scripture compares believers to sheep with God as their shepherd. It makes sense that baptism gifts use the same image to welcome a new member to the flock.
Confirmation is when the person receives the mark of the Holy Spirit. Artists have often used a dove to represent the Holy Spirit since this was the form God took at Jesus’ baptism.
For Christians, the symbolism of the bread and the cup are self-explanatory. These images, as well as grapes and wheat, are frequently used in first communion gifts to celebrate the reception of the body and blood of Christ through the Eucharist.
Commitments To Service
The simple dignity of the Resurrection Standing Cross reflects how sometimes the most obvious choice for an ordination gift can be the best. The cross is the center of our faith and now the center of the new priest’s life.
Two rings are a universal symbol of marriage. The rings interlock, symbolizing the bond between husband and wife. The cross symbolizes how this bond was sealed by God and how He has given them the grace needed to serve each other.
Symbols Of Healing
The more serious the sin, the more meaningful the sacrament of reconciliation becomes. This imagery of a new sunrise takes on a religious meaning when you realize that the sun also represents God the Son and how, through reconciliation, He brings renewed hope into a person’s life.
Anointing of the sick is perhaps the most somber of the sacraments. Angels play many roles — protectors, guides, heralds, and ministers. An angel figurine, like our small Angel of Remembrance, can assure the sick and her family of God’s watchful presence.
Place Your Order Today
The holy sacraments mark the stages of our natural lives and milestones on our spiritual journey. A gift from Creator Mundi in Denver will be an unforgettable reminder of how far the recipient has come and help them draw closer to God. Browse our catalog of unique gifts for all 7 sacraments and place your order today.
The three months of Spring are the season for renewal. With everything flourishing, the world is full of life. To accord with the season, go to bed a little later, and get up a little earlier. Be patient and let things grow. Go for a stroll in the courtyard, loosen your hair, relax your body and freshen your mind. Enjoy the season and do not do anything harmful to your health. This is the way to cultivate the Qi of Life in Spring.
The Yellow Emperor’s Classic on Internal Medicine
Don’t miss the movie on Pope Francis! It opens on Thursday evening, May 17, at Chez Artiste, 2800 S. Colorado Blvd. in Denver.
Here is the trailer.
Below is a letter by German filmmaker Wim Wenders:
Pope Francis – A Man of His Word
by director Wim Wenders
March 13, 2013, was an exciting day. Not only that we had a new pope and that the Cardinal of Buenos Aires, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, became the 266th pontiff of the Catholic Church. But he was the first pope from the Americas, the first from the Southern hemisphere, the first Jesuit as bishop of Rome, and most of all, the first pope to have chosen the name of Francesco! Saint Francis of Assisi (1181-1226) was one of the most revered Christian saints and reformers who had dedicated his life to poverty, and his deep love of nature and for all living beings on Earth is still exemplary. Many people on our planet, not just me, had the highest hopes for the pope who had chosen a name that in itself was a promise.
From the beginning, Pope Francis – A Man of His Word was supposed to be a personal journey with Pope Francis rather than a traditional biographical film about him. I wanted the pope’s ideas and his message to be the centre of this documentary, his work of reform and his answers to today’s global questions.
I imagined the visual and narrative concept to engage the audience face-to-face with the pope, creating a dialogue between him and, literally, the world. Taking questions from people from all walks of life, Pope Francis responds to farmers and workers, refugees, children and the elderly, prison inmates and those who live in shantytowns. All of these voices and faces are a cross-section of humanity joining in a conversation with Pope Francis.
The Vatican made it very clear to me that I’d have carte blanche and very privileged access to the archives, in addition to final cut. They let us shoot without interfering. We had four long interview sessions with Pope Francis, on four afternoons spread over two years. We shot three of them indoors in various places in the Vatican and one outside in a garden, but still inside the walls of the Vatican. You don’t just go out to a park somewhere to shoot with the pope.
We shot with several cameras, the main one with an “Interrotron” in front of it, a sort of “reversed teleprompter,” which allowed Pope Francis to see me on a screen and look me in the eyes while we spoke, but at the same time look straight into the lens and thereby into the eyes of everybody watching the film. In these four long talks, Pope Francis was utterly spontaneous, direct and open in all his answers.
In an era of deep distrust of politicians and people in power, when lies, corruption and fake news are the order of the day, our film shows us a man who lives what he preaches and who has gained the trust of people across the world, from all religious, cultural and social backgrounds. That’s why I think this is not just a film for Catholics or Christians. Pope Francis – A Man of His Word helps to do away with certain prejudices and misunderstandings. The pope, literally, has his arms wide open for everyone.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers of the world! We wish you love, health and happiness!
Be silent in your mind, silent in your senses,
and also silent in your body.
Then, when all these are silent, don’t do anything.
In that state truth will reveal itself to you.
It will appear in front of you and ask,
“What do you want?”
We must be aware of the problems of the world.
Then, with mindfulness, we will know what to do and what not to do to be of help.
If we maintain awareness of our breathing and continue to practice smiling,
even in difficult situations,
many people, animals and plants will benefit from our way of doing things.
Are you massaging our Mother Earth every time your foot touches her?
Are you planting seeds of joy and peace?
I try to do exactly that with every step,
and I know that our Mother Earth is most appreciative.
Peace is every step.
Shall we continue the journey?
Thich Nhat Hanh, Peace in Every Step, 1991
The experience of the first sacraments are occasions worthy of celebration, and Creator Mundi in Denver, CO has personalized baptism, confirmation, and first communion gifts for you to choose from to commemorate these occasions. Our memorable gifts strike an ideal balance of holy reverence and joy.
Important Milestones In Faith
Baptism is the first sacrament of the faith and a momentous occasion for the family. Personalized baptism gifts for boys and girls are a treasured way to acknowledge this step of faith being taken. Confirmation affirms the faith and is another sacrament in becoming part of the church, closely tied to the first communion. The importance and beauty of these rites cannot be understated. Celebrating the acceptance of Jesus Christ is monumental and an experience to remember. We have confirmation gifts and personalized first communion gifts that will capture the significance of this commitment to God, faith, and the church.
One-Of-A-Kind Religious Gifts
We have many options to choose from when it comes to first communion gifts and religious gifts in general. We feel confident that our selection of beautiful and symbolic products are one-of-a-kind, just like your loved one. Our rare products are based on scripture and steeped in tradition. You will find unique cross pendants, figurines of angels and saints, and a variety of prayer cubes created to strengthen faith. If you are looking for personalized gifts for boys and girls, we can offer you a variety of meaningful options.
Gifts To Remind & Remember
Only you know what gift will be right for your loved ones for these special occasions. You want something that reminds them both of your love and support and their faith-based commitments. If you need some ideas to get you started, here are a few of our favorites:
Shop Our Selection Today
Our religious gifts are rare and unlike anything you will find at other stores. Let us help you find the perfect gift for dear ones from among our beautiful and unique choices. These sacred rites are experiences to treasure, and we at Creator Mundi want you to find unique baptism, confirmation, and first communion gifts that you love giving. Shop our online selection today and contact us with any questions you may have. We look forward to hearing from you.
It is a startling truth that how you see and what you see
determines how and who you will be.
Explore your particular style of seeing.
Ask yourself: what way do I behold the world?
To the fearful eye, all is threatening.
To the judgmental eye, everything is closed in definitive frames.
To the resentful eye, everything is begrudged.
To the indifferent eye, nothing calls or awakens.
To the inferior eye, everyone else is greater, more beautiful, brilliant and gifted than you.
To the loving eye, everything is real.
Love is the light in which we see light.
If we could look at the world in a loving way,
then the world would rise up before us
full of invitation, possibility and depth.
To recognize how you see things
can bring you self-knowledge and enable you
to glimpse the treasures your life secretly holds.
— John O’Donohue, Anam Cara, excerpt
“Saint Michael is always portrayed as slightly intimidating, but I wanted him to be portrayed as friendly and peaceful,” says Tom Sarmo, who created this unusual painting of Archangel St. Michael, the patron saint of police and law enforcement.
The medium is acrylic on wood. Done in Grisaille technique (gray underpainting with colored glazes on top).
Come see the original painting at our gallery!
Thursday Night by Ronald Rolheiser
IT WAS A COLD, DARK THURSDAY NIGHT.
A man was discouraged,
discouraged as only one could be,
who looks on much hard work,
on much sincerity,
and sees only failure,
and a sinking sun.
ON THAT DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
A man feels alone,
He sweats blood, in darkness,
the blood of loneliness,
the loneliness of all people.
ON THAT DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
A man looked on loneliness, and
He yearned to heal.
He yearned to lead all into unity,
into Community, and
out of the damned aloneness
which keeps people from warmth and life.
ON THAT DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
A man sweats blood,
in body and spirit.
He sweats in darkness,
He sweats in loneliness,
It is then …
ON THAT DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
A man takes bread and wine, and says:
“This is my body, this is my blood.
eat this bread, drink this wine.
And when you do,
I’ll be there, and …
AS ON THIS DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
I’ll be leading you out of fear and loneliness,
out of isolation and darkness,
into a community of warmth and life,
with God, and
with each other.”
ON THAT DARK THURSDAY NIGHT,
When the sun had long gone down,
and hope and warmth had said good-bye,
when the darkness of loneliness had seemed to win the earth,
we were given,
as a gift from God,
the possibility of Community.
“Fight the good fight, finish the course, keep the faith, and trust in God’s mercy. There is no better epitaph a Christian can aspire to be worthy of.”
It has been said that your talent is God’s gift to you, what you do with it is your gift to God. Although it is a wonderful, insightful, comment on God-given gifts, it lacks urgency.
In roughly 30 years of ministry, Saint Paul spent about six of those years as a prisoner or in prison. In the Roman system of justice a pre-trial was held to clarify the charges against the accused. It is after this pre-trial that Paul writes his second letter to Timothy. It has the tone of a condemned man giving final instructions to those who will take up his mission.
Paul does not dwell on his accomplishments. He does not hold up the churches he founded or the thousands of souls he brought to God’s Kingdom. Instead he says of his ministry that he has “competed well.”
Like Saint Paul we are all “on trial.” God is the author of all life and our benefactor who has given each of us a unique set of gifts and talents. At the end of our lives we will look back and realize we had very little time to use those gifts to glorify God. The race is very swift. Along with our talent and abilities, God has written His law on our hearts. We know deep within our hearts if we are using our gifts generously or if we are using them selfishly. It is very easy to be self indulgent, to pander to the public’s baser desires and motivations. In fact it can also be highly profitable.
The Good Fight
But pursuing profit solely for its own sake is not a generous use of our gifts. We have been entrusted with a task, a very specific way to accomplish that task, and very little time to do it. At the end it will not matter how much money we made or how highly we were regarded as artists. In the end what will matter is whether or not we used what God has given us to reflect His splendor and bring hope and joy to His people. Most importantly we need to remember that God is always there, to help us, guide us, and strengthen as we endure the trial, and finish the course.
In (Read More)
I know, because I was one of them.
Some of you, who have read my book, The Way of Beauty, about beauty in education will remember my descriptions of my time as an undergraduate at St Edmund Hall – ‘Teddy Hall’ as we called it. My intention was to reinforce a point made by Cardinal Newman about the Oxford he attended in the late 18th century. Here is a picture of Teddy Hall today:
Newman told us that in his estimation the lectures were a waste of time, the tutors were inept, and the curricula were ill-thought out. The strongest forming influence, he said, was the influence of the educational community and most of all interactions between students. Immorality and rowdiness pervaded all aspects of life, but despite this Newmans tells us, it was responsible for making Oxford the greatest university in the world at forming students to do what England required of them – ruling an empire and subduing the Catholic Faith! Here is Newman’s college, Oriel:
I would not be so critical of the tutors or the curriculum in my subject Metallurgy and Science of Materials in 1980s Oxford when I attended. And I have little to say about the quality of the lectures because I barely attended any. However, I would assert that the strongest influence on my education was the same as that in Newman’s day, the conversation with other students and the fun of living in the college community.
Newman was not arguing for bad tutors, dull lectures, or pointless classes in the curricula. Neither was he promoting immorality in college life. Rather, he was telling us that we have to understand that students teach each other the important things in life and if we don’t have a community that does so for good, it will do so for ill. Picking up on this theme, much of my book is devoted to discussion of ways in which a good community can be created and which forms students as faithful Catholics.
As an illustration of the power of the community, I am going to describe how St Edmund Hall introduced me to Schubert and from there to the pleasures of classical music. The faculty had no influence at all. I should add that have not attended a music class since I gave up playing the recorder at age 11, and there were no general education classes at Oxford for anyone (Read More)
If you want to surprise someone special with a religious gift this Easter, choose a unique cross or crucifix from Creator Mundi in Denver. Crafted by European artisans and only available from Creator Mundi, these pendants and wall art will be cherished for years. Here are a few Easter gifts that showcase the variety of artists and artwork in our collection:
- Cross of Hope Pendant
- New Life and Hope Crucifix
- Vita Christi Wall Cross
- Jesus Christ, Tree of Life Crucifix
These cross necklaces are some of our most popular pieces and make great Easter gifts. Handcrafted in Italy, each glass pendant contains unique shades and patterns. No two are alike, making it a real one-of-a-kind gift. The Cross of Hope is especially fitting for Easter since the color green symbolizes new life in Christ. This pendant also comes in multicolored, blue-green, dark blue, and red versions.
Wood and Metal
Catholics will enjoy this classic, German-made crucifix. It combines the strength of oak with the modern elegance of bronze. The wood grain runs vertically and horizontally as well, symbolizing how Christ’s death reconciled humanity with God and how He freely offers this gift of salvation to the world. With its small size (only 8 inches high) and slender design, this New Life and Hope Crucifix will fit in any room.
You could ponder the intricate details of the Vita Christi Wall Cross for years. This solid bronze piece seamlessly blends six scenes from Christ’s life — the Annunciation to the Virgin Mary, the Epiphany of the Magi, raising Lazarus from the dead, washing the feet of the disciples at the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, and Pentecost. While Easter and the cross take center stage in this piece, the other scenes make it a profound symbol year-round. This wall cross comes in small and large sizes to fit any space — as the centerpiece of a gallery wall in your home or to complement your office decor.
If you’re looking for a statement piece, our Jesus Christ, Tree of Life Crucifix fits the bill. With its bright finish and beautiful colors, this heirloom-quality bronze and enamel crucifix will be treasured now and for generations to come. The Tree of Life is a poignant symbol in the Bible, present in the Garden of Eden and reappearing in Revelation. This crucifix demonstrates how the Easter cross is our Tree of Life and our hope of eternity in Heaven — a resonant symbol during Lent.
Creator Mundi in Denver is your place for unique crosses or crucifixes. Did none of these interest you? Don’t worry. We have over 200 different crosses and crucifixes in our collection and over 70 pieces of Christian jewelry. You’re sure to find something you love. Browse our store and place your order today.
“Michelangelo worked with a sense of urgency as if he were afraid he would not have time to explore all that he saw of God’s beauty in the work he created.”
The old that is strong does not whither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien
Many artists, especially those basing their work on traditional forms, are familiar with the “cult of the new.” There seems to be an idea, within the rarified world of fine art, that “new” is better than “good,” or “beautiful.” This has led to some of the more extreme examples of modern art that sell for staggering sums and leave people shaking their heads over what is perceived as “art.”
But outside of this “art bubble” there are artists who respect the traditions of the past and build on them, taking those ancient forms and breathing new life into them for a new generation. These are artists who recognize that their role is to pursue beauty and show it to the world, even if the world around them no longer understands the power of the beautiful. The traditions of the past have proved their worth and their strength, they have proved their staying power by withstanding the test of time. How much so-called “modern art” will still be admired 500 years from now?
The Beauty of the Past
To reclaim the power of beauty we look to the past, to those forms of art, music, and architecture that are still regarded as beautiful hundreds or even thousands of years after they were created. Beauty is not as subjective as most people think. It can be said that what is beautiful is that which has been considered beautiful by the greatest number of people over the longest period of time.
There is power in the Beauty of the past.
But we are on the clock. We live finite live and the work before us is vast. We must be unrelenting in our pursuit of the beautiful.
The Need for Urgency
For most of his life, the great Renaissance artist, Michelangelo worked alone. Probably he just found it easier to work by himself rather than try to explain his vision to someone else. This would have added to his reputation as being aloof and a little grouchy. But later in his life, in his eighties, he did allow assistants to help him in sculpting the massive marble figures he had (Read More)
Creator Mundi celebrates its 30th Anniversary!
Here is a whimsical, joyful and playful St. Francis, painted by Denver artist Tom Sarmo for our 30th Anniversary! Does this Francis make you smile, too? Come see the original (and others by Tom Sarmo) at our gallery!
May this delightful image of St. Francis remind you and us in the years to come of all that St. Francis stood for! In the words of John Dear: “St. Francis embodies the Gospel journey from violence to non-violence, wealth to poverty, power to powerlessness, selfishness to selfless service, pride to humility, indifference to love, cruelty to compassion, vengeance to forgiveness, revenge to reconciliation, war to peace, killing enemies to loving enemies. More than any other Christian, he epitomizes discipleship to Jesus. . . .
Francis’ logic points the way toward personal, social, and global justice, and peace. If each one of us practiced Gospel simplicity, voluntary poverty, and downward mobility, like Francis, we would share the world’s resources with one another, have nothing to fear from others, and live in peace with everyone.”
 John Dear, You Will Be My Witnesses: Saints, Prophets and Martyrs (Orbis Books, 2006).
All our valued customers, friends and artists are invited to an
Open House on
Saturday, April 7, Noon – 4:00 PM
901 Englewood Pkwy, Suite 112, Englewood, CO 80110
Open House guests receive a 30% in-gallery discount on April 7 on every purchase over $30 which enters them in a drawing on Thanksgiving Day for an exquisite bronze wall plaque, “Angel of Contemplation,” a $350 value.
Until Thanksgiving 2018, customers placing online orders over $30 with the code 30YEARS also enter the drawing and receive free shipping for orders over $50.The more orders you place, the better your chances of winning!
Book review: A Devotional Journey into the Mass – How Mass Can Become A Time of Grace, Nourishment, and Devotion, by Christopher Carstens (pub Sophia Institute Press).
In this book, (buy here) the author, Christopher Carstens (who is the editor of Adoremus Bulletin,) takes us through each key element of the Mass (from how to enter the church through to how to respond to the dismissal). Grounding his discussion on the sacramental thought of Romano Guardini, he takes us on a journey into the heart of the liturgy. The principles he articulates are general and so are applicable to the Ordinary Form, the Extraordinary Form, and the Anglican Ordinariate form of the Roman Rite. (If you want a printable summary of the eight principles, Sophia also very kindly provides a free printable summary in two pages, here.) Furthermore,
‘If you’re unhappy because the Mass has become for your routine – or even boring and tedious – these pages are for you. They teach you eight simple ways to make your every Mass a joyful time of piety and intense devotion.’ This is how the publisher, Sophia Institute Press, quite legitimately describes the appeal of this book. I would add to this that Carsten’s approach is the basis for a mystagogical catechesis that will allow us to participate so that the Sacred Liturgy as a whole itself becomes the primary force for continual mystagogy. As such I would see it as a natural complement to any authentic Catholic education, such as described in the book on children’s education I reviewed recently – Educating in Christ.
By emphasizing the sacramental nature of the Mass so profoundly and in such simple and clear language, and by showing its deep connection to scripture and salvation history it is, in my opinion, a foundational text for an approach to the Mass that could reap rewards for a lifetime.
I appreciated particularly, for example, his emphasis also on lectio divina as a preparation for the scripture that is proclaimed in the readings at Mass. Firstly, he de-mystifies it with simple and clear instructions on the method. Secondly, and just as importantly, he highlights how this exercise in meditation and contemplative prayer is consummated in the worship of God. It is not a higher activity, but one like all others that is not actually liturgical, which derives its power and effectiveness from the liturgy, and so, (Read More)
When we think of mercy, we should be thinking first and foremost of a bond, an infallible link of love that holds the created and uncreated realms together. The mercy of God does not come and go, granted to some and refused to others. Why? Because it is unconditional—always there, underlying everything. It is literally the force that holds everything in existence, the gravitational field in which “we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). Just like that little fish swimming desperately in search of water, we, too “swim in mercy as in an endless sea.” Mercy is God’s innermost being turned outward to sustain the visible and created world in unbreakable love.
~~ Cynthia Bourgeault, Mystical God: Trusting in the Mercy of God
“In our increasingly secular society the most important action of the prophet, and the artist, may be to simply remind his community of their relationship with God.”
Among those who write or blog on the topic of theology and the arts; the idea of artist as prophet comes up fairly regularly. This seems to point to a larger issue concerning vocation. Given his (or her) unique gifts, what is the role of the artist?
One who speaks for God
We tend to think of a prophet as one who predicts the future, but that is not at all the ancient understanding of the word. The word “prophet” means speaker, or one who speaks. In Christian use, a prophet is one who has a special connection to God and speaks on God’s behalf.
By virtue of our Baptism we are invested in the threefold office of Christ, priest, prophet, and king. The degree to which we fulfill each of these offices will depend on our individual gifts and calling. We are all called to be prophets, as well as priests and kings, to the degree our gifts allow us.
Like every Christian, an artist may fill all of these roles as well as several others. An artist may act at various times as a teacher, a storyteller, even as priests and kings when the role of priest and king are properly understood. But how does an artist serve as a prophet? How does an artist speak for God?
Artist as prophet
A speaker must have a listener. The prophet serves his community by speaking or interpreting the Word of God to God’s people, even if the people or community disregard the words or actions of the prophet. In our increasingly secular society the most important action of the prophet may be to simply remind his community of their relationship with God.
The view that artists are apart from society and must be left on his own to create according to his personal whim, even if it is unintelligible to all but the artist himself, is a very modern idea. For most of human history, at least the history we have documented, the artist served his community, usually in connection with the religious beliefs of that community.
All artists, of every type, act as a prophet when he or she creates work that participates in the role of the prophet, reminding us of our relationship to God and of our status (Read More)