Love Letters From God
to Catherine Rose Chiara
and Snapshots of Jesus
Each collage that is a love letter from God is a unique creation. I currently have produced about 70 collages. Each one is 9 inches x 12 inches and all are created from commercial prints of a painting I painted in 1996. The painting was of the flooded Ohio River and the Cincinnati skyline with the Roebling bridge and Riverfront Stadium. I no longer have the painting. These collages are important works of art because each one documents my discipleship to Jesus Christ.
While I was living across the street from Holy Cross Immaculata Catholic Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, in January of 2012, Jesus called me by appearing to me as I rode the # 1 bus home from my job in Hyde Park. At that time I had a little faith in God. I did not know Jesus Christ and I did not practice the Catholic religion into which I had been baptized and confirmed. Because Jesus came to me in God form and not the recognizable human form I was familiar with, he sent the Holy Spirit to do a lot of work on me so I would know it was Him who called me.
The summer of 2013 the Holy Spirit led me to the crucifix at the back of Holy Cross Immaculata. There I confessed that I believe He, Jesus, is the Son of God and to get to God I need to go through Him. Then I asked Him to heal me. I immediately felt the evil spirits leaving me that had been inside of me for 40 years. I began following Jesus Christ and became His servant. In late August of 2013 as I stood by my home at 1023 St. Gregory Street, Jesus Christ, in an external locution, told me in a very audible voice, “It is time to go.” I left and briefly lived with my sister in Cary, North Carolina.
At the end of November 2013 I moved to Mandeville, Louisiana. I have been serving Jesus Christ as sacristan at Our Lady of the Lake Church for 9 years. This September 3rd, the Feast of St. Gregory the Great, though not celebrated because it falls on a Sunday, will be 10 years to the day I drove away from Cincinnati and began following Jesus Christ. Each collage encompasses what I experience on a daily basis as His servant.
Most of the collages have a crucifix, though a few have only crosses. Most of the collages have in them the Eucharist and chalice. Some have the Holy Spirit in the form of the dove. Some have the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Some have Jacob’s Ladder. Some have a monstrance. Some have the ichthus. Some have a rooster which is a way to remember to not deny Jesus Christ his right to love us because He purchased us with His life. Some have pearls because we are His pearl of great price. They all have hearts because they are love letters from Him to me. They all have swirls and spirals which signify the Holy Spirit moving me to serve Jesus Christ every day. Each collage is signed and dated on the back along with the story of how the collage came to be and the image of the original painting that was used to make the collage.
This is on the back of each collage: In 1996 I was living in Cincinnati, Ohio and the Ohio River flooded. I painted a large painting of the river and the city and titled it After the Flood. In the year 2000 I had 500 prints made, 19 inches x 27 inches, from a very fine commercial printing press in Cincinnati. I carried these prints around with me for 23 years. On March 8, 2023 Our Lady of the Lake Altar Society hosted a Lenten reflection with a guest speaker Sister Judith Ann Gomila. At one point she asked if any of us journaled. I told her I used to write love letters to God. Later that day God told me to go to storage and retrieve a few of the prints I had made in 2000. After taking them home he told me to cut them into shapes such as hearts and crosses and make collages. After I made the first two I saw where he was going with this. I began making them and he told me they are love letters from him to me. A week later he told me to make and sell at least 350 so I can go with OLL to the Holy Land in 2024 and see the birthplace of the one sending me these love letters. He then told me the meaning of the title. After the Flood meant after the great flood where Noah built an ark and the flood wiped out humanity, God began planning for me, waiting until the time he decided two people would come together and create me from human love so Jesus could love me with Godly love.
I am selling collages to raise money to visit the Holy Land in 2024 with the church where I am sacristan.
Contact me at CatherineRoseChiara@gmail.com
Snapshots of Jesus
The purchase of a Love Letters from God collage or a book of prints of Snapshots of Jesus will help me continue to serve Jesus Christ. I serve Jesus Christ in a few ways. Snapshots of Jesus is a work in progress and I have quite a few more paintings to create for the book.
1. Sacristan: This is a paid position as a staff employee of the church. It is about 10 hours a week. I am in charge of the sacred vessels that hold the body and blood of Jesus Christ. I help the priests and deacons prepare for the celebration of Mass.
2. Catechist: For the past seven years I have taught religion to fifth grade children. This year I became certified to teach Catechesis of the Good Shepherd to children ages three to six years old.
3. Altar server and liturgical coordinator: I assist on the altar five days a week. I literally serve Jesus to others.
4. Snapshots of Jesus and the Love Letter collages: These are visual homilies that Jesus is creating through me to prepare me to go out into the world and introduce Him to those who do not know Him. 30 years ago I became aware of a talent God gave me. He allowed me to develop a secular discipline so when he called me to be a disciple of Jesus Christ I already had the discipline formed in me and could use it for Him.
5. Future service and work: Introducing Jesus Christ to people through my own experiences.