Churches Reject Sculpture of Homeless Jesus
Toronto artist wanted 'marginalized' people to relate
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted Apr 14, 2013 1:40 PM CDT
The sculpture of Jesus in artist Timothy Schmalz's studio.   (YouTube)

(Newser) – A new sculpture of Jesus looks a lot like a homeless person lying on a bench—which, ironically, is why it had trouble finding a home, the Toronto Star reports. Artist Timothy Schmalz carved Jesus huddling under a blanket so that "marginalized" people could relate. Jesus was, after all, portrayed as homeless. But two prominent Catholic churches still passed on his work. "It was very upsetting because the rectors liked it, but when it got to the administration, people thought it might be too controversial or vague," says Schmalz.

The sculpture ultimately found a home in a downtown area outside a Jesuit theological school. The Star quotes a theologian who praises the work for puncturing "the illusion of normalcy," but doesn't report on any locals who oppose the sculpture. There is, however, a mission in Missouri called Jesus Was Homeless that runs into trouble over its name. "People who have issue with it are usually the staunch religious people," says an administrator, "especially those who follow prosperity teaching and doctrine that says if you are homeless or poor you don't have enough faith."

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Showing 3 of 100 comments
Hank10303
Apr 16, 2013 12:31 PM CDT
But anyone that has studied the bible knows, Jesus was homeless. He didn't have a house to come home to every night and he lead a nomadic life. The thought that he never slept in the wilds is ludicrous and ignorant. But then most American Christians are Christians in name only; they have never read the bible from beginning to end.
$28919642
Apr 15, 2013 7:56 AM CDT
"People who have issue with it are usually the staunch religious people," says an administrator, "especially those who follow prosperity teaching and doctrine that says if you are homeless or poor you don't have enough faith." . . . . I wish to find these people, and punch the scales from their eyes.
1freeusa
Apr 15, 2013 5:35 AM CDT
"The Illusion" Jesus may have walked with the poor, and represented the beaten, but jesus always had a wealthy home, and wealthy family friends to fall back on. He was raised as part of a wealthy family, and attended the finest schools.. As far as him being god incarnate.. that idea was introduced by rome during the state authorized conversion of europe and the empire to christianity. It was a common belief in pagan europe that the "gods" took wives from humanity. This concept is not in the old testiment.