The Beloved Disciple

Currently, the icon Jackie writes about below can be found in the Nave above the votive candles.

The “Beloved Disciple” icon spoke deeply to me, touching my heart the way God-nudges do. I prayed on the mission of All Saints’ Episcopal Church – “Disciples making Disciples of Christ,” which is the deep, loving ministry of discipleship. The Orthodox icon “The Beloved Disciple” reminds me of the faithful disciples of All Saints’ Episcopal Church, who through their baptismal covenant continue to walk humbly with God and bear witness to God’s love to the world. Thus, I began the prayerful journey of writing the icon of “the Beloved Disciple” for the people of All Saints’.

“The Beloved Disciple” is a tender icon of Jesus and a disciple at the Holy Table. Jesus is comforting the disciple. Jesus welcomes and listens to the disciple. Jesus blesses, sanctifies, forgives, and feeds the disciple at the table. Then the disciple is sent back into the world to share the love of God. The icon is a prayer, a window to our soul, and the reflection of the light and love of God.

Many theologians believe “The Beloved Disciple” mentioned in the Gospel of John is John the Evangelist; however, the beloved disciple is never named. As followers of Jesus, we are all beloved, and Jesus is longing for a deep relationship with each of us. Jesus calls us to carry his message of love into a broken world and awaits us in love. Jesus’ arms are open to us. Our Lord blesses us, teaches us, feeds us, and sends us back into the world to share His love. Jesus calls each of us to be His Beloved Disciples.

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”

Matthew 28: 19-20

This icon was written to the Glory of God and in thanksgiving, love, and prayer for  all the disciples at All Saints’, who faithfully serve our Lord as “Disciples making Disciples for Christ.”



Liturgical symbols in the icon

The altar, a place where we are joined with the Great Cloud of Witness and Holy Saints, fed with the Body and Blood of Christ, is adorned with white fair linens and green altar hangings. Green is the liturgical color representing the growth of the church during the seasons after Epiphany and Pentecost. 

The cross is in remembrance of St. Mary’s Church in Glendalough, Ireland. The church now in ruins, was a safe haven for battered women and abused children in the early centuries. 

The abundance of the Holy Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Christ, is present in the bread and wine on the paten and in the chalice.

The buildings in the background represent the world. 

The scroll in Jesus’s left hand is the Holy Gospel. Jesus is blessing us with right hand. Jesus’ arms are open to love us and call us into the Holy mystery. Jesus envelopes us in love. 

The seat is the seat of our Triune God.

The disciple has his hands cupped as to receive a blessing or an answer to a prayer from Jesus. His face is weary but once refreshed he goes back into the world. 

Jesus and disciple welcome you to be part of this Holy Time.

The blue robes and red mantel are worn by Jesus. The blue represents heaven and red the red clay hills of Judea, as well as the nature of God’s love, sacrifice and life-giving energy. 

The green of the disciple’s robes represents eternal hope and symbolizes our life begins and ends in Christ.  

The gold halos represent the light shining into the world from God and God’s unfailing love from generation to generation.