St. Philip Episcopal Church in Near East Columbus is launching its new exhibition space this month with an Advent season art show devoted to an episode in the Christmas Story with a special meaning for our time: The Flight into Egypt.

The inaugural Family in Flight exhibition at The Gallery at St. Philip combines artworks of the Holy Family seeking shelter in Egypt from the murderous King Herod with depictions of modern refugees based on this traditional sacred imagery. They remind us the Christ Child was one among hundreds of millions of dispossessed people from biblical times to the present.

The 26 art pieces on loan from the Sacred Art Pilgrim Collection range from a Flight into Egypt scene, hammered out of an oil drum lid by Haitian Metalworker Exulien Exuma to contemporary variations on the Holy Family and the Madonna and Child based on photographs taken during the recent Middle East refugee crisis.

The highlight of Family in Flight is a specially commissioned drawing by Filipino-American Artist Wayne Forte (above), giving a present-day spin to the story of the Flight into Egypt. It poses the question of what might have happened to Joseph, Mary, and the Christ Child had they come to Egypt, seeking asylum, only to be denied entry at the border.

The Gallery at St. Philip, located at 166 Woodland Avenue, three blocks north of East Broad Street, is open to the public for self-guided tours from Sunday, December 3, 2917 to Sunday, February 4, 2018, on Sunday afternoons following the 10:30 a.m. service until 3 p.m., Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. or by special appointment. For more information, call 614.253.2771 or contact St. Philip’s by email at

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