The Sower,
Street art by Morfai (born 1992),
Executed in 2008,
Spray paint on wall
© Morfai Art

The Sower,
Street art by Morfai (born 1992),
Executed in 2008,
Spray paint on wall
© Morfai Art

Gospel of 23 September 2023

The Parable of the Sower

Luke 8:4-15

With a large crowd gathering and people from every town finding their way to him, Jesus used this parable:

‘A sower went out to sow his seed. As he sowed, some fell on the edge of the path and was trampled on; and the birds of the air ate it up. Some seed fell on rock, and when it came up it withered away, having no moisture. Some seed fell amongst thorns and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some seed fell into rich soil and grew and produced its crop a hundredfold.’ Saying this he cried, ‘Listen, anyone who has ears to hear!’

His disciples asked him what this parable might mean, and he said, ‘The mysteries of the kingdom of God are revealed to you; for the rest there are only parables, so that

they may see but not perceive,

listen but not understand.

‘This, then, is what the parable means: the seed is the word of God. Those on the edge of the path are people who have heard it, and then the devil comes and carries away the word from their hearts in case they should believe and be saved. Those on the rock are people who, when they first hear it, welcome the word with joy. But these have no root; they believe for a while, and in time of trial they give up. As for the part that fell into thorns, this is people who have heard, but as they go on their way they are choked by the worries and riches and pleasures of life and do not reach maturity. As for the part in the rich soil, this is people with a noble and generous heart who have heard the word and take it to themselves and yield a harvest through their perseverance.’

Reflection on the Street Artwork

At first there was simply the bronze statue (on the left on our photo) created by Bernardas Bucas (1903–1979) in Kaunas, the capital of Lithuania. The sculpture embodies the interwar period of the 1930s where the peasant is sowing grain, working for his country. Fast forward to 2008. Street artist Morfai mounted the wall behind the sculpture with gilt bronze stars. The composition works only at night, as then with the light which is shining upon the monument, a shadow of the sculpture is cast onto the wall, which then corresponds with the stars being sown by the shadow silhouette of the sower… The seed grains have become stars….

In the daytime the street artwork doesn't make any sense, there are just random stars featured on a wall. But when night comes and the shadow of the sculpture is cast onto the wall, then the artwork does make sense.

Parables often also don't make sense at first sight, and it is only at certain times, or when our own personal circumstances change, or a certain light is shining upon a certain aspect of our lives that we can see what they mean.

The important thing is always to approach the parables, even the ones we are very familiar with such as the parable of the sower today, with renewed freshness… just as the street artist in our artwork approached the old sculpture with renewed freshness....

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Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens(@nolly)
2 months ago

Just a few thoughts on this haunting art work: “He also made the stars.” Genesis 1. Such a beautiful statement. God, the fons et origo of creative genius has given us this same gift. How many times did Morfai see this statue of the sower, before it came to him that seeds were needed to complete the silhouette, but wouldn’t show up – so it had to be stars. So many references to them in the Bible: “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.” Revelation 22. And surely, bottom left of the cluster of stars is one, alone, bright silver. I taught some children I worked with in Madrid to look for ‘the bright morning star’, which appeared at dawn on winter mornings, and to think of it as a symbol of hope, of God’s eternal pledge to light our way.

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M(@chazbo)
2 months ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

Are you a nun Noelle? An RE teacher? My daughter has been told to teach RE in her school but it is not Catholic and she has to teach all sorts of stuff. But she always emphasises Christianity.

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens(@nolly)
2 months ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

No! I would be entirely unsuitable… I’m a bit writer and former editor, with a spell in post-degree agricultural training courses for overseas personnel!

Nik
Member
Nik(@nik)
2 months ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

Knap !

Polly French
Member
Polly French(@pauline)
2 months ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

Such an interesting life Noelle.

Patricia O'Brien
Member
Patricia O'Brien(@marispiper)
2 months ago

Thank you all so much. It means a lot to have prayerful people on your side x

marleen de vlieghere
Member
marleen de vlieghere(@marleen)
2 months ago

I pray for her, Patricia

spaceforgrace
Member
spaceforgrace(@spaceforgrace)
2 months ago

I prayed for her, her family and you too Patricia this evening at the vigil mass- and I threw in a miracle request too! We are all in His hands.

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