Right, the mosaic tile iconography to be installed at the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth is based on this water painting by Mdm Adelene Tan. The painting shows Our Lady in a dress decorated with Vanda Miss Joachim orchids, the National Flower of Singapore, and surrounded by children of many races.

NAZARETH, HOLY LAND - A Singaporean iconography of Our Lady will be consecrated on Dec 20 during Mass at the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth, Holy Land. It will then be installed on the outer walls of the basilica together with 80 other mosaic tiled iconographies of Our Lady, each iconography depicting each country's expression of Our Lady.

The tile mosaic of the Singaporean version of Our Lady is made by Domus Dei, the Vatican tilers, and is based on a painting by Mdm Adelene Tan from the parish of Sts. Peter & Paul, who was specially commissioned for the task.

The painting was completed in July and approved by Archbishop Nicholas Chia, the Singapore Order of Malta and Father Ricardo Butros, Custodian of the Basilica of the Annunciation.

The digital picture was then sent to the Domus Dei at the recommendation of the Basilica, and they completed the mosaic at the end of November at a cost of Euros 10,800 (S$21,600).

It arrived in Nazareth on Dec 7.

On the same day, at a Mass at the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd celebrated by Father Colin Tan, SJ, to mark the first anniversary of the Lourdes Experience at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, the painting was displayed to the public, and prayer cards distributed.

Knights Dr Gabriel Oon (Hospitaller), J Y Pillay, Dr Andrew Kwok and their spouses and some Friends of the Order will be at the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth on Dec 20 to witness the consecration and installation.

The Story About The Gift of Our Lady & Her Singapore Children to the Basilica of the Annunciation, Nazareth, the Holy Land

History

In BC 6, "In the sixth month of Elizabeth's pregnancy God sent Gabriel to a virgin maiden promised in marriage to a man called Joseph in the town of Nazareth in Galilee. The angel said, "Peace be with you, most favored one. The Lord is with you and has greatly blessed you" Mary was very perplexed by these words." You will be become pregnant and give birth to a son and you will name Him Jesus and he will be called the Son of the most high God…. He will rule over the house of Jacob forever and His kingdom will have no end." ………….. "I am the servant of the Lord. Do unto me as you have said." (Luke 1, 26-38)

Jesus spent his childhood there (Luke 2, 39-40).

After the defeat of the Jewish Bar Kokhba revolt in 66AD by the Roman Emperor Vespasian, Nazareth became only accessible to the early Christians in the 4th Century and the first church was built over the grotto.

Tancred, the first crusader "Prince of Galilee" rebuilt the churches and the monasteries, but these were later razed to the ground by the Beybars. When King Richard the Lion Heart, left the Holy Land in 1192, Saladin offered to Richard's bishop a parting present, the prelate asked Saladin to station two priests to serve in the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, the Basilica of the Annunciation, Nazareth, and the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. Saladin consented.

In 1730 the Franciscans built a small church which they enlarged in 1877. The Franciscans had always wanted to build a magnificent church and in 1960-68 they built a magnificent church. In their excavations, they discovered the base of a column from the Byzantine church (about 400 AD) the words "Ex Maria" the Greek for "Hail Mary".

Today the Basilica of the Annunciation's outer walls follow the lines of the old crusader basilica. On the outside walls are the mosaic tiles of 80 countries of the world, depicting each countries expression of our Lady.

Spiritual Reflections of the Iconographic Water Painting of Our Lady, the Singapore Children & the Vanda Miss Joachim Orchids

1) OUR LADY WITH INFANT JESUS WITH ANGELS ABOVE HER

"Why has this thing happened to me, that the Mother of my Lord comes to me? (Luke 1:43).

"A great and mysterious sight appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun (Rev 12:1).

"And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with an iron rod" (Rev 12:5)

2) THE INFANT JESUS & GOD

* "A child is born for us, a son given to us; authority rest upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God; Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

His authority shall grow continuously and there will be endless peace in His Kingdom. He will rule as King David's successor basing his power on right and justice (Isaiah 9:6-7)

* "A virgin will become pregnant and have a son, and he will be called Immanuel (God with us)" (Matt 1:23)

"And the word became flesh and lived amongst us…" (John 1:14)

"Christ is the image of the invisible God, the first born of all creatures." (Colossians 1:1)

"What God wants you to do, is to believe in the one He sent". (John 6:29)

3) JESUS, THE CHILDREN & HIS TEACHING ON HUMILITY

"Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Matt 19:13-14)

4) THE GIFT OF THE NATIONAL FLOWER OF SINGAPORE, THE VANDA MISS JOACHIM ORCHID

"Let the Earth produce all kinds of plants" and it was done And God was pleased with what he saw (Genesis 1:11-12).

"He made all kinds of beautiful trees grow there and produce good fruits. (Genesis 2:9)

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