Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta

Photo Courtesy of The Cathedral of Christ the King
An anonymous donor made it possible for the Cathedral of Christ the King to permanently acquire the marble replica of Michelangelo’s Pietà.


Anonymous donor helps Cathedral acquire Pietà replica

By GEORGIA BULLETIN STAFF | Published June 10, 2022

ATLANTA—The Cathedral of Christ the King recently announced that the marble replica of Michelangelo’s Pietà will become a permanent installation of the cathedral. The 1:1 replica of Michelangelo’s masterpiece has been on display in the Gathering Space since November through a partnership with Arte Divine. That organization works with the Patrons of the Arts of the Vatican Museum to create exact castings of the Pietà and other sacred art pieces, making them accessible to the faithful throughout the world.

During its four-month exhibition at the cathedral, an anonymous benefactor requested to sponsor the permanent acquisition of the casting for the parish. The Pietà will remain in the Gathering Space, the centerpiece of a new area that joins the cathedral, adoration chapel and d’Youville Chapel as a sacred place of prayer for parishioners and visitors. Viewing hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

“Our cathedral, school, parish community and the Archdiocese of Atlanta are so very blessed to have this iconic image of our Christian faith placed here at the Cathedral of Christ the King,” said Msgr. Frank McNamee, rector. “The Pietà focused the hearts and minds of our students toward God and his Blessed Mother. For our sick and elderly, the Pietà inspires healing, hope, peace and compassion to each person and their loved ones.”

“Pietà is perhaps the most beautiful sculpture ever created,” said Archbishop Hartmayer. “I hope it elevates the hearts and minds of all those faithful who personally experience the transcendent beauty of this divinely inspired work.”

Michelangelo sculpted the Pietà at the end of the 15th century. It depicts the body of Jesus held by the Blessed Mother after the crucifixion. It is regarded as both the consummate expression of Michelangelo’s artistic abilities and an embodiment of divine inspiration that guided his work. The original sculpture now sits in St. Peter’s Basilica, though elevated and behind protective glass after an incident of vandalism in 1972.

Archbishop Hartmayer blessed the cathedral’s replica at a special ceremony last November.