Fifty-two life-size statues of Jesus have been donated to the Canada and Bermuda Territory by Canadian artist Timothy Schmalz, and were unveiled at territorial headquarters in May. The bronze statues, titled Whatsoever You Do after Matthew 25:40, will be distributed to ministry units across the territory.

“Jesus tells us to open our eyes, because what you do for the lonely, the forgotten and the hungry, you do for him,” says Colonel Ann Braund, territorial secretary for spiritual life development. “We tend to draw a circle around ourselves and fill it with people we're comfortable with, because when you open doors in your life, messy comes in. Welcoming the stranger can be enriching for us and a blessing for others.”

Those walking into territorial headquarters may be alarmed by the figure of a homeless person sitting cross-legged in the foyer. It is only by the outreached, nail-pierced hand that viewers would identify the statue as Jesus. “The size of it alerts us and can have a disturbing presence,” says Colonel Braund. “We follow a spiritual leader who was homeless, but this is not always the image we gravitate toward.

“Art allows us to find expression for the inner workings of our soul,” concludes Colonel Braund. “It allows for deep, spiritual thoughts to be shared and discussed.”

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