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About the Cover

The Saint John’s Bible to Visit Duke Divinity School

The cover image is Gospel of John Frontispiece and Incipit from The Saint John’s Bible. This vast, illuminated manuscript has been commissioned by Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minn. Contemporary scribe and illuminator Donald Jackson works in the Scriptorium in Wales, where he handwrites the Bible and creates illuminations in a unique collaboration with other artists and scribes.

Gospel of John Frontispiece and Incipit includes words from Colossians 1:15–20, which transcend the shadows and provide the link between the Christ figure and the text opposite: “And Lived Among Us.” The Living Word steps from the darkness that recalls the chaos and nothingness of the Creation story and moves toward light and order. The texture behind the head of Christ is inspired from an image taken from the Hubble Space Telescope and lends a breathtaking cosmic character to the whole action taking place. To the left, an intriguing keyhole recalls the tradition of locked and hinged manuscripts securing, protecting, and holding the “key” to the Word of God.

Duke Divinity School will incorporate illuminations from The Saint John’s Bible into both worship services and Tuesday morning prayer service during Convocation & Pastors’ School. Displays of the Bible will also be available for prayer and reflection in Goodson Chapel. For more information on this example of the artistic interpretation of Scripture, visit