St. Mark, the Winged Lion

The Evergreen Cemetery in Phoenix, Arizona, has many tombs, gravestones, and markers imbued with Christian symbolism. One such monument in that cemetery is a statue of St. Mark.  St. Mark, who wrote the Second Gospel, is often depicted with a quill and a book representing his authorship of the Gospel.  He is also depicted either as a winged lion or with a lion.  This statue portrays him with a quill, book, and a winged lion at his feet.

Some Christians refer to St. Mark as “Saint Mark the Lionhearted” in keeping with the legend of him being thrown into a pit of lions.  Instead of the lions devouring St. Mark, they sublimated themselves at his feet.

In the mosaic from the columbarium in the St. Francis Catholic Cemetery in Phoenix, St. Mark is depicted as a winged lion. The emblem refers to Christ’s power and regal dignity.

St. Mark’s feast day is April 25th.  He is the patron saint of notaries, lawyers, glassblowers, stain-glass window makers, the imprisoned, and sufferers from insect bites and those who suffer with goiters.

St. Mark depicted as a winged lion has become the symbol of the city of Venice, Italy.

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