Scalabrinians. Popes’ Portrait Artist is in Sao Paulo for the beatification Mother Assunta and “reveals” her masterpiece

The official portrait artist of the Popes is in São Paulo, Brazil for the beatification of Mother Assunta Marchetti. She in non-other than, Natalia Tsarkova, who was commissioned to create the official portrait of the “Blessed” of the Scalabrinian Missionary Sisters. She painted an oil on canvas that depicts her standing very firmly, despite the stormy sea in the background, and the weather that almost rips her dress. Behind Mother Assunta, you see a ship in a dramatic moment: it is on the verge of being overwhelmed. Instead, all the people who are in the ship are saved and are safe on the boat (symbol of the Church) that Mother Assunta meanwhile embrace, clasping her to the heart with a protective love.
In the portrait, the green boat (color of hope), with the red border (color of faith and love) is the Congregation. In the boat you see, a humanity varied, two Missionary Sisters who take care of the needy, wearing a modern suit that indicates the continuation of the activity of the Congregation done in a more dynamic manner. One of them gives drink to a thirsty person (a representation of mercy and charity); the other, in front of the boat tenderly embrace a small child (symbol of love of neighbor, and protection). In her right hand, the mother holds the crucifix in an ‘indicative’ way on how she was writing with her hearts suffering and weary, full of fear and despair, the only message that can give strength and save: Faith. At the bottom of the cross, we see a transparent drop represents a tear of joy of salvation.

“For me it was a great responsibility to create the official image of this great Blessed. Before starting a portrait, for me it is critical of blending in character as much as possible – Tsarkova explained. When I read her biography, there entered steadily and profoundly in my heart filled with joy. I was impressed and moved by her extraordinary heroic life, full of courage and of love, of suffering and sacrifice, always joyful, continuing her spiritual journey, guided by faith, hope and charity, always ready to give herself to the orphans, the poor, immigrants and the needy. I began to feel Mother Assunta’s presence beside me. I felt that, with the breath of the Holy Spirit, the difficult task of refer proved easier than expected.
“The giant image of about eight meters of Natalia Tsarkova will be unveiled during the celebration of the beatification at the Cathedral Se, Sao Paulo Brazil.

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