Nano Nagle Icon

This icon of Nano Nagle is present in the College foyer and in every Star Homeroom.  It is studied in detail in the first Religious Education unit at Year 7 and is also used in the Star Staff induction process. It presents, with all the power of symbols and colour, what words do very inadequately. The artist, Desmond Kyne, has chosen a youthful image of Nano Nagle to occupy the centre panel, which is alive with colour. Nano stands in calm majesty and suggests both patience and endurance.In the centre of the icon is the image of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic devotion to which Nano Nagle was particularly drawn.At Nano's feet is a group of children. Buildings symbolising the city of Cork are to either side with the Southgate Bridge on the left and the Northgate Bridge on the right. These areas were the centre of Nano Nagle's apostolate toward children, many of whom were abused and exploited. 

The side panels of the icon elaborate some of the events and symbols of Nano Nagle's life: 

* spiral motifs, the Celtic symbol of eternity and of God, the Father;

* the tabernacle, recalling Nano Nagle's extraordinary devotion to the Eucharist; 

* a tiny window illuminating a cramped room, suggesting the poverty-stricken conditions of the cabin schools;

* Nano Nagle holding a book, a symbol of literacy and learning, which she so highly prized; 

* the four founding sisters, standing near a well of living water; 

* the gallows, a reminder of the conditions under which the Irish-Catholic people lived during the days of the Penal laws which sought to destroy their identity;

* Nano Nagle caring for the sick... she personally knew every garret and tenement in the city; 

* Nano Nagle with her lantern, a symbol of her joyful spirit and of her devotion to the poor, to whom she brought God's love. 

For more information about the Nano Nagle icon, visit Society of Presentation Sisters