Two Mormon missionaries in St. Louis recently took a new approach to finding and teaching the gospel — graffiti art.
Elder Jacob Burgoyne, the artist, and his companion Elder Scott McIntyre, full-time missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, used stencils, paint, and a ladder to create a colorful mural depicting an 11-foot image of the Christus statue set against a backdrop of the cosmos, with the website Mormon.org listed across the top of a 20-foot wall space. They signed their artwork by painting black name tags.
The artwork, created with mission president permission at the flood wall south of the Gateway Arch, was part of the annual international street art festival Paint Louis, according to St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
"Burgoyne has a simple message to communicate with this mural: Mormons worship Christ," writer Rosalynde Welch wrote. "Every visual element is designed to reinforce that concept."
The article describes the process the missionaries went through to gain approval and create the art. Elder Burgyne had studied art for several years before his mission, including the techniques for street art. He told Welch the Christ mural was his biggest and most complex project to date.
The mural sparked conversations with many people, including other artists and hecklers, the article said.
"One painter suggested they add tattoos to their Jesus," Welch wrote. "When a few passers heckled the missionaries, tag artists around them came to their defense."
Overall, hundreds stopped to admire the Mormon mural and take selfies.
"Christ’s painted hands are situated at the perfect height to look as though they are resting on a person’s head. Some people have begun to call the mural 'Touched by the Lord.' Burgoyne hopes that some will be spiritually touched, as well," Welch wrote.
Read the entire article here.