The Saint John’s Bible at The Basilica May 2, 2024

The Basilica of Saint Mary will dedicate a Heritage Edition of The Saint John’s Bible on Pentecost Sunday, May 19. A Heritage Edition is a fine art edition created under the direction of renowned calligrapher Donald Jackson, who oversaw the creative development of the original, hand-illuminated Saint John’s Bible. The Saint John’s Bible original manuscript is located at the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library on the campus of Saint John’s University and Abbey.

The Heritage Edition consists of seven volumes in one set and only 299 sets have been created. It is being shared in communities – churches, hospitals, universities, libraries, etc. – around the world to celebrate the creative and inspired ways The Saint John’s Bible can ignite one’s spiritual imagination. The Saint John’s Bible is a masterwork of art and spirituality that invites a spiritual journey toward God, both for individuals and communities of all faith journeys.

This gift was brought to The Basilica through a special connection to honor Michael O’Connell’s ministry and service to The Basilica community and the Saint John’s community. Rev. Dr. John Ross, Executive Director of The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Program, who is blessed to have Michael as a mentor for nearly 20 years, coordinated a small group of families to collectively gift this Heritage Edition to The Basilica.

Johan van Parys, PhD, Managing Director of Ministries/ Director of Liturgy & Sacred Arts, said, “The creation of The Saint John’s Bible was a major initiative and a wonderful celebration of the importance of the Word of God for us Christians. The importance of the Word of God is clearly underlined not only by the size of the volumes but also by the artistry of the calligraphy and the illuminations. The art of handwriting and illustrating bibles had given way to the printing press for the past 500 years. The reimagination of this ancient art to create a handmade bible for our time is a true gift.”

Receiving the Heritage Edition of the Bible will allow us to celebrate the Word of God more extensively and more deeply both within and outside the celebration of the Eucharist.

“The Basilica is honored to accept this sacred gift and share it with our community.” said Fr. Daniel Griffith. There will be an exhibit and lectures accompanying its arrival and a dedication.

Pentecost, Donald Jackson, ©2002 The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University,
Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

Pentecost Sunday
May 19
9:30am Mass – Dedication & Blessing of The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Edition
11:00am Reception – Teresa of Calcutta Hall