The Living Christ
This article was contributed by a local member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The views expressed may not represent the views and positions of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For the Church's official site, visit churchofjesuschrist.org.
By Mia Castellano
With every new year comes a fresh start and expectations for how the next 365 days will feel. Whether the past year brought more happiness or hardship, when January 1st comes around there is always a renewed sense of hope. In a world where everything is changing, hope can always be found by following the Savior. At the Visitors’ Center of the Rome Italy Temple, this hope is represented in a statue of Christ surrounded by His original twelve apostles. At the feet of the Savior is a scripture found in Matthew 11:28 that says, “Come unto Me.” This invitation to come unto the Lord is one that Dale G. Relund, one of the twelve disciples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, affirms this when he says: “The Savior loves to restore what you cannot restore; He loves to heal wounds you cannot heal; He loves to fix what has been irreparably broken; He compensates for any unfairness inflicted on you; and He loves to permanently mend even shattered hearts.”
In a place known for its heavy influence of Catholicism, this statue stands out from others found in this great “Eternal City.” Rather than the typical depiction of Christ on the cross, or with the Virgin Mary, at the Visitors’ Center, we see the Savior as He is today: living and resurrected. With the prints still in His hands and His feet, we see that rather than being overcome by it all on the cross, the Savior of the World truly overcame it all. The message that Jesus Christ rose again on the third day and lives today brings peace and hope to a world that needs it. As the Living Son of the Living God, He invites us to come and partake of His hope. He invites us to use that hope, and He invites us to share it.
We invite you to come and see, come and feel, and come and understand the spirit of hope that can be felt at the Rome Italy Visitors’ Center. Because the Savior descended below all things, there is hope found in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He will lift us above all things.