Priests & Artists

Roger W. Lowther

June 1, 2019Tokyo, Japan

“Priest, teacher, artist—the classic degeneration”

–The Centaur, John Updike

According to Updike’s famous maxim, nothing is further removed from each other than the roles of “priest” and “artist.” Wait, what? Isn’t the MAKE Collective about exactly this? We are living paradoxes!

In The Centaur, this paradox is played out through the irreconcilable differences between the grandfather “priest,” the father “teacher,” and the son “artist,” mirroring Updike’s own family lineage. Through his craft of myth and storytelling, Updike brings these seemingly irreconcilable differences together. In his own way, Updike lifts each of these roles redemptively upward and brings them together into one family, or could you even say, one body?

Priests, teachers, and artists are each gifts from God, and God uses them for his purposes “so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Eph. 4:12-13). God works through missionary artists to point people to Christ (evangelize) and build up his church (nurture), that we may be built up together in the knowledge and worship of the Son of God.