Thursday, July 20, 2017

Ohio artist restores religious statues, stirs memories of closed parishes

By Dennis Sadowski
Artist Lou McClung paints a statue of Mary in his studio at the Museum of Divine Statues in Lakewood, Ohio, July 18. He has restored dozens of statues, many from closed churches in the Diocese of Cleveland that are now displayed in the museum he operates. (CNS photo/courtesy Lou McClung, Museum of Divine Statues)
LAKEWOOD, Ohio (CNS) — St. Elizabeth of Hungary stands tall, the bread in her right hand, a gift to the poor, looks like it may have just come from the oven. The saint as depicted by a 19th-century sculptor has plenty of other companions. There is St. Christopher carrying the child Jesus, St. Stanislaus, the martyred bishop of Poland, and St. Sebastian with arrows piercing his body, seemingly just recently. The statues are among dozens that have been carefully restored by Lou McClung, a professional artist, who has made it his vocation — and avocation — to preserve artifacts from closed churches in Northeast Ohio and elsewhere. He displays them in what is now a 7-year-old venture called the Museum of Divine Statues. [More]/>
Statues from closed Cleveland Catholic churches fill the Museum of Divine Statures in Lakewood. (Kevin Niedermier)