Adjunct Faculty

Fr. Brendan McAnerney, OP

DSPT Adjunct Professor - Fr. Brendan McAnerney, OP

Adjunct Lecturer



BA, Boston University; MA, Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology.


That which the word (Scripture) communicates by sound, the painting (icon) shows silently by representation. ~ St. Basil the Great

Fr. Brendan is a Dominican priest with faculties to serve as a priest in the Melkite-Greek Catholic Church, in which he is a consecrated iconographer. As a Dominican he has served Roman Catholic parishes in California, Oregon and Washington. While in residence at St. George Melkite-Greek Catholic Church in Sacramento, California he manages DominICON external link, a ministry to, "Expand the Appreciation of Holy Icons and the Traditions of the Eastern Churches," through which, he teaches the history and theology of holy icons and icon painting. He also directs icon retreats and paints commissioned icons. In 2005 he recorded his first DVD for DominICON entitled, "Sacred Craft – An Introduction to the Art & Spirituality of Holy Icons."

He received a B.A. in Art History from Boston University where he also worked on a Master's Degree. He earned a Master of Arts Degree in Religion and the Arts from the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology in Berkeley, California.

He has painted since childhood, and continues to paint landscapes influenced by the Tonalists of his native New England and the early 20th century California painters of the Monterey artists' colony. Since studying icon painting with the Antiochian Orthodox and later with a Russian Master Iconographer, however, he has devoted the majority of his time to painting in the iconographic tradition of the Eastern Churches.

Courses Taught:

  • Introduction to Icon Painting

In this course each student (maximum 12) will be instructed and aided in the painting (writing) of an icon of the Holy Mandylion in the Byzantine tradition using acrylic paints, gold leaf, ancient and contemporary techniques. No previous artistic experience is necessary, only a desire to encounter the Creator God in the exercise of the sacred craft. All materials and instruments will be supplied for a $50 materials fee, as the instruction demands a uniformity of media and instruments.

  • Icon: Sacred Image

This course will examine the history, theology, spirituality and tradition of icons as sacred Eastern Christian images, established on the doctrine of the Incarnation. It will demonstrate that iconography is a sacred craft, an integral instrument of evangelization making the Word of God visible. The format will be slide-lectures. The evaluation method will be a reflection paper. Text: Martin, Linette. Sacred Doorways external link. Brewster, MA: Paraclete Press, 2002.