I sketch and paint Christ and the sufferings of Christ in churches, in homes, in public squares and on icons, on linen cloth, in closets, on clothes, and in every place I paint so that men may see them plainly, may remember them and not forget them… And as thou, when thou makest thy reverence to the Book of the Law, bowest down not to the substance of skins and ink, but to the sayings of God that are found therein, so I do reverence to the image of Christ. Not to the substance of wood and paint — that shall never happen… But, by doing reverence to an inanimate image of Christ, through Him I think to embrace Christ Himself and to do Him reverence… We Christians, by bodily kissing an icon of Christ, or of an apostle or martyr, are in spirit kissing Christ Himself or His martyr.

Leontius the Hierapolian – Sacred Images, Statues and Other Icons

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