Join the Department of Special Collections on April 27, 2:00 PM as

The Saint John’s Bible is the first handwritten illuminated Bible of its scale in over 500 years. On April 27th at 2:00 PM, the Department of Special Collections at the University of WisconsinMadison Libraries will welcome Jim Triggs, Executive Director of The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Program, for a special talk that will showcase the extraordinary endeavor of creating The Saint John’s Bible. The UWMadison Libraries recently had a copy of the Bible donated by Dick Cable, UW Alumnus Class of ’55, on behalf of the Dick and Marlene Cable Family Fund.

“This event is a wonderful opportunity to learn about and celebrate one of the great acts of book-making of our time,” said David Pavelich, Director of Special Collections & Archives at UWMadison. “Collaboratively crafted, contemporary in its aesthetics, and ecumenical in its approach, The Saint John’s Bible is the kind of spiritual work our society very much needs now.”

Beginning in 1998, Saint John’s University commissioned Donald Jackson, senior scribe to the Queen, to lead a team of calligraphers and artists to create a Bible for the 21st Century.  Smithsonian Magazine called The Saint John’s Bible, “One of the extraordinary undertakings of our time.”

For the past 10 years, Triggs and his colleagues at Saint John’s University have worked with organizations across a wide range of faith traditions to bring The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Edition to communities around the world. “Illuminated Encounters” offers an appreciation of how this Bible lives up to its mission “to ignite the spiritual imagination of people around the world of all faith journeys.”

“It’s a work that truly can bring people and faiths together,” explained Pavelich.

Like the illuminated voiceprints in the Psalms volume, which celebrate the intersections of diverse cultures, there have been many “illuminated encounters” along this Bible’s journey: A late-night impromptu exhibition of The Saint John’s Bible at a McDonalds on the Southside of Chicago, a North Dakota teen who insisted on seeing the Bible after chemo treatments at Mayo, a lesson taught by a Jewish man when discussing the Death of Moses illumination, and a blessing of the Bible by a representative of a local Muslim community.

“In addition to thanking Jim for presenting this special event, we also extend our tremendous thanks to the generosity of our friend Dick Cable,” noted Pavelich. “Because of him, the UWMadison Libraries are fortunate to have one of these amazing Bibles in our collection.”

Event Details: Illuminated Encounters with Jim Triggs

  • April 27, 2018
  • 2:00 PM
  • Department of Special Collections, Memorial Library, 9th Floor
  • Refreshments will be served following the talk, courtesy of the Friends of the UWMadison Libraries.
Valley of the Dry Bones (Ezekiel 36:15 – 37:25), Donald Jackson (artist) and Susie Leiper (scribe), Copyright 2005, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Catholic Edition, Copyright 1993, 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.