How Catholic Art Saved the Faith

The Triumph of Beauty and Truth in Counter-Reformation Art


About this item

Not long after Martin Luther’s defiance of the Church in 1517, dialogue between Protestants and Catholics broke down, brother turned against brother, and devastating religious wars erupted across Europe. Desperate to restore the peace and recover the unity of Faith, Catholic theologians clarified and reaffirmed Catholic doctrines, but turned as well to another form of evangelization: the Arts.

Convinced that to win over the unlettered, the best place to fight heresy was not in the streets but in stone and on canvas, they enlisted the century’s best artists to create a glorious wave of beautiful works of sacred art — Catholic works of sacred art — to draw people together instead of driving them apart.

How Catholic Art Saved the Faith tells the story of the creation and successes of this vibrant, visual-arts SWAT team whose war cry could have been “art for Faith’s sake!” Over the years, it included Michelangelo, of course, and, among other great artists, the edgy Caravaggio, the graceful Guido Reni, the technically perfect Annibale Carracci, the colorful Barocci, the theatrical Bernini, and the passionate Artemisia Gentileschi. Each of these creative souls, despite their own interior struggles, was a key player in this magnificent, generations-long project: the affirmation through beauty of the teachings of the Holy Catholic Church.

Here you will meet the fascinating artists who formed this cadre’s core. You will revel in scores of their full-color paintings. And you will profit from the lucid explanations of their lovely creations: works that over the centuries have touched the hearts and deepened the faith of millions of pilgrims who have made their way to the Eternal City to gaze upon them.

Join those pilgrims now in an encounter with the magnificent artworks of the Catholic Restoration — artworks which from their conception were intended to delight, teach, and inspire. As they have done for the faith of so many, so will they do for you.

Msgr. Timothy  Verdon photo

"Lev's text sheds light on the most influential development in Western sacred art after the Franciscan revolution of the late Middle Ages, helping modern readers re-connect with the dynamism of Catholic culture in the early modern era. "

Msgr. Timothy Verdon
Director, Florence Cathedral Museum (Italy)
Fr. Roger J. Landry photo

"This is a work not only about beauty but of beauty. It will captivate those who love art, love the faith, love great writing or love all three."

Fr. Roger J. Landry
Author, National Chaplain, Catholic Voices USA
Newt Gingrich photo

"Liz Lev so brilliantly connects art and faith that you will experience every painting, statue and church in a deeper, emotionally powerful and spiritually fulfilling way. "

Newt Gingrich
Peggy Noonan photo

"A treat for the eye and the soul. "

Peggy Noonan
Wall Street Journal
Bishop Robert Barron photo

"In a series of finely crafted and absorbing essays, Elizabeth Lev actually demonstrates how, at a crucial moment in the Church’s history, artists used paintbrush and chisel to proclaim the Gospel. This book will be extremely helpful for catechists, teachers, preachers, and I daresay, for artists themselves. "

Bishop Robert Barron
  • Pages: 320
  • Format(s): Paperback, eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-622826-124
  • Product Code: 6124
  • Availability: In Stock
  • Publication Date: October 02, 2018
  • Categories: Apologetics, Bestsellers, By title, Church History
Beautiful to look at and so inspiring! The author's writing style is accessible but she doesn't dumb down the content. The generous, colored images were extremely helpful.
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How Catholic Art Saved the Faith Set bundle

How Catholic Art Saved the Faith Set

Join Elizabeth Lev and Joan Lewis as they explore the beauty and authenticity of Catholic art in the Eternal City.


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