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The Icon of the Nativity

The birth of Christ to the Virgin Mary is at the heart of the Christian mystery. The icon of the nativity, with its different elements, can be understood as picturing the essential conditions for this event to be experienced as an inner reality. Writing in the 4th century, Gregory of Nyssa said: “What came about in bodily form in Mary… takes place in a similar way in every soul that has been made pure”. In the morning speaker Jeremy Naydler will present an illustrated talk on the evolution of the nativity icon over many centuries, and explore its layers of meaning. The afternoon will be an opportunity to reflect on and discuss together these different levels of meaning, and the enduring significance of the event that the icon depicts. Our speaker Dr Jeremy Naydler holds a PhD in Theology and Religious Studies and is author of a number of books on religious life in antiquity and the history of consciousness. He has a longstanding interest in medieval spiritual life and has previously spoken at Fintry on The Seven Deadly Sins, on Dante’s Divine Comedy and on The Book of Hours. Programme:

  • 10.15 Arrival and Coffee
  • 10.30 Morning session
  • 12.00 Lunch (please bring packed lunch – all drinks provided)
  • 13.30 Afternoon session
  • 15.00 Tea


Saturday 07 December 2019


10:15 am - 3:30 pm




Fintry Retreat House
Brook, Surrey GU8 5UQ UK

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