Oil paintings by Sr. Marie Pierre Semler, M.M. (1901 – 1993)

Our Lady of the Night – Original created in 1934


Our Lady stands in the night upon our world.  It is that night which brought in tangible form the dawn of our salvation.  In the cold, quiet, silence of the nights darkest hour Mary brought to us the Life that is our Light.  He rests, “The Ancient of Days”, in the cradle of her arm with one tiny hand raised in benediction between heaven and earth.  The light of the star mingles with the light radiating from the Infant Christ, and is guided within the folds of Mary’s mantle to shine upon the earth.

The natural light that floods our earth and casts a shadow that we call night, is but a figure of that supernatural light which is Christ, penetrating all things, and casting no shadow for it is in our darkness as penetrating all things, and casting no shadow for it is in our darkness as well as in our light.  It is He, the creator of light who mingles these two lights, who sent forth Epiphany’s star to proclaim His coming and by it drew kings into His presence from the far reaches on the earth.  It is He who in tender mercy created Mary, our Mother, and placed Himself in her hands that she might be a lamp to our feet as we journey through life’s night.  She who is filled with His light, wears a dark mantle; the mantle of the cross, the cross of humble everyday life, in poverty and service to others.  Through the shadowing of this mantle could be seen, only here and there, a bit of light from within as we see the stars in the painting glow dimly through its outer surface.  It is only when Mary draws aside her mantle and the hand of the “Light of the World” is raised in benediction that we may hehold something of the exalted glory in Mary’s hidden life.  It reaches  “from end to end mightily, and ordereth all things sweetly.” Wis. 8-1.

“She is the brightness of eternal light, and the unspotted mirror of God’s majesty, and the image of his goodness.” Wis. 7-26.