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Saint John's Bible: Saint John's Bible at Siena College

About the Saint John's Bible

The Saint John's Bible is the first handwritten and illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine monastery since the invention of the printing press in the 15th century. Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota, commissioned world-renowned calligrapher Donald Jackson, senior scribe to Her Majesty the Queen’s Crown Office at the House of Lords in London, England, to lead a team of scribes and artists to create this masterpiece. More information on The Saint John's Bible and the Heritage Edition can be found at www.saintjohnsbible.org and the Fact Sheet.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Ignite the Imagination

Saint John's Abbey and University (Collegeville, Minn.) and calligrapher Donald Jackson, in collaboration with many from the wider community, produced a Bible, a work of art, to ignite the spiritual imagination of believers throughout the world.

Woman and the Dragon, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2011, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Revive Tradition

In the Middle Ages, monasteries were leaven in both church and society. They were centers of culture and learning which kept the tradition of scriptural reading alive for the whole world. They helped preserve knowledge and culture for the sake of the larger human family. In commissioning a handwritten, illuminated Bible, Saint John's revives a tradition that has been nearly absent form the Christian world since the invention of the printing press in the 15th century. The Saint John's Bible affirms this community's commitment to the study of Scripture, to the book arts, and to educational, artistic, spiritual and scholarly pursuits.

Psalm 150, Sally Mae Joseph (artist, scribe), Copyright 2004, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Discover History

Scholars have speculated about the processes and challenges involved in creating a great manuscript. The Saint John's Bible allowed art and cultural historians the opportunity to experiment in historical discovery, to explore a process that was once a core activity of human civilizations.

Ruth the Gleaner, Suzanne Moore, Copyright 2010, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Imagery

Throughout The Saint John's Bible, you'll see the signs of our times. Strands of DNA are woven into the illumination of the "Genealogy of Jesus." The Saint John's Bible asks, "What do you see?"

Genealogy of Jesus, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Imagery

Throughout The Saint John's Bible, you will see the signs of our times. The Twin Towers in New York appear in the illumination of Luke's parables. The Saint John's Bible asks, "What do you see?"

Luke Anthology, Donald Jackson with contributions from Aidan Hart and Sally Mae Joseph, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Imagery

Throughout The Saint John's Bible, you'll see the signs of our times. Satellite photos of the Ganges River Delta and photos from the Hubble telescope were used to depict creation. The Saint John's Bible asks, "What do you see?"

Creation, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2003, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Imagery

Throughout The Saint John's Bible, you'll see the signs of our times. In Acts, "To the Ends of the Earth" includes the first vision of Earth as seen from space in a hand-written Bible. The Saint John's Bible asks, "What do you see?"

To the Ends of the Earth, Donald Jackson with contributions from Andrew Jamieson and Sally Mae Joseph, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Glorify God's Word

A Biblical Illumination takes the Word of God and glorifies it by transforming the Word into a complementary art form employing illustration, color and design. The Saint John's Bible is meant to be a prophetic witness to the glory of the Word of God and to humankind's God-given dignity.

Ezekiel's Vision at Chebar - Eating the Scroll, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2005, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Foster the Arts

The Saint John's Bible with its spiritual themes and art is a source of artistic vitality for the Siena College Community and the Capital Region.

Life in Community, Aidan Hart with contributions from Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Transformation

St. Francis throughout his adult life kept falling in love over and over again with Jesus Christ. This conversion process entails an ongoing process of aligning one's life more closely to the life of Christ.

Birth of Christ, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Justice for God's People

Of special concern to Franciscans and all believers in biblical revelation is the repeated call for justice for all of God's people.

Letter to the Seven Churches with the Heavenly Choir, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2011, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Give Voice

The Saint John's Bible seeks to give voice and expression in an interdisciplinary way across campus involving differing departments and schools of the College. Linked to other communities, and other images, other interpretations and understandings will facilitate dialogue, including inviting various groups on and off campus to participate in the many activities of the initial year display in the Yates Art Gallery in the true spirit of Christianity.

If I Speak in the Tongues of Mortals, Thomas Ingmire, Copyright 2011, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Hospitality

In embracing the leper, St. Francis recognized the dignity of the individual. The Saint John's Bible emphasizes texts advocating hospitality for the poor, the pilgrim, the seeker, and the stranger.

Are Any Among You Suffering?, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2011, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Ecumenical Translation

The Saint John's Bible uses the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) translation of the Bible. This translation was chosen because it is theologically sound and because its predecessor, the Revised Standard Version, is officially authorized for use by most Christian Churches: Protestant, Anglican, Roman Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox.

And Every Tongue Should Confess, Suzanne Moore, Copyright 2011, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.

Representing the Divine

Several approaches are taken to represent the divine in the pages of The Saint John's Bible. Reading the Gospels, you will see the images of Jesus range from representational to abstract. In Prophets, the rainbow, that sign of God's enduring promise to Noah, is used to show the presence of God. Gold leaf is used throughout, from Creation to Apocalypse, to direct the reader to the presence of the divine.

Word Made Flesh, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All Rights reserved.

All seven volumes of the Saint John's Bible Heritage Edition are on display across the Siena College campus. Digital images from the SJB are available to view in the Siena College Digital Collections.