The Diocese of Brentwood has commissioned a piece of graffiti art for the Year of Mercy.
The graffiti, by 17-year-old Joe Rose, spells out the word “Merciful” with “Like the Father” underneath. It covers the previously bare wall of a former air-raid shelter on the site of Brentwood’s cathedral.
The artist said he wanted to incorporate liturgical colours into the design to give it “more meaning” while using traditional graffiti letters.
Fr Martin Boland, dean of the cathedral, said: “The word feels as if it is dancing and alive. It’s a bold and fresh take on the motto.”
Fr Boland said the words “Like the Father” remind us to “imitate the merciful example of the Father who asks us not to judge or condemn but to forgive and to be merciful”.
He added: “Joe has also managed to create another Holy Door by painting an image of the Year of Mercy logo on a recessed door. This image has Christ, the merciful shepherd, carrying humanity on his shoulders. In the image, Christ and humanity look at each other and their look becomes one which is symbolised in Joe’s work by the single and shared eye.”
Catholic cathedrals around the world have been invited by Pope Francis to create a Holy Door for the Year of Mercy.
As well as the door created by Joe Rose, Brentwood Cathedral will be unveiling a specially decorated Holy Door into the Cathedral itself at the 11.30am Mass on Sunday December 13.
Fr Boland said he wanted people to visit the wall and send the wonderful image on it around the world. “A huge thank you to Joe for this brilliant piece of work for the Year of Mercy,” he said. “Do go and have a look. Take a photo or selfie and post it on social media.”