Pope Francis receives unique Bible translation from Germany

What an exciting day…

Faith can move mountains. In this case, the saying goes even beyond death. At the general audience, in the audience hall Paul VI in Rome, Pope Francis received the number ONE of the limited Wiedmann Bible ART edition on February 20th. The original is worldwide unique. It is a visual narrative of the Bible depicting the Old and New Testament in 3,333 illustrations. A printed copy of the special ART-Edition was gifted by the son of the artist, Martin Wiedmann.

Source: Servizio Fotografico Vaticano – S.F.V.

“It was overwhelming. I stood in the Prima Fila (1st row). I have never been so full of anticipation in my life. Pope Francis listened attentively to Martin telling the Wiedmann Bible’s story and was very enthusiastic about the work. My father worked long and hard on this Bible. Even in times when he was seriously ill. His faith strengthened him and never let him give up his hope that his Bible will be published one day,” says Martin Wiedmann.


However, Willy Wiedmann (1929-2013) did not know back then that his son would be the one taking on this mission. He discovered the Bible with its 3,333 paintings in the attic of his father’s gallery. He digitized the illustrations and first published virtual versions of the Bible. In cooperation with the German Bible Society and the renowned photographer and designer Manfred Rieker, the Wiedmann Bible was published as a print edition for the first time in February 2018. The limited ART-Edition contains all illustrations of the original. Comments as well as a biography of the artist and various bible verses from the revised Luther Bible 2017 complement the images. The golden edition is limited to 333 copies, the red and black edition to 3,000.


By now, among others, the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz, the Bavarian State Library in Munich, the Duchess Anna Amalia Library in Weimar, the Bible Museum bibliorama in Stuttgart and the largest bible museum in the world, the Museum of the Bible in Washington D.C. (USA), added the Wiedmann Bible ART edition to their inventory. If and where the Wiedmann Bible ART-Edition will be showcased in the Vatican is not yet known.

They did not expect to see something like this…

Art and Bible – Bible and Art….Other’s have done it before but the very first visitors of the Wiedmann Bible exhibition at the Museum of the Bible in Washington were not prepared for what they saw. They were in awe, impressed or moved to tears – even Martin Wiedmann himself.

“When I arrived on Monday and saw how beautifully everything was set up, I had tears in my eyes. The entire team of the Museum of the Bible did an amazing job. My father would have been to happy to see that his life’s work will finally help people engage with the Bible”.

Within the first two days hundreds of visitors have seen the exhibition. They were so kind to share their experience with us.

Nancy wrote: “I am amazed and fascinated by Willy Wiedmann’s astonishing life, talents and accomplishments, especially his Bible illustrations. He’s more than a 21st century Leonardo da Vinci given that he was also a musician and composer, author and publisher. What is even more impressive is that his son Martin, […] and his family were able to figure out how to publish Willy’s uniquely beautiful, illustrated Bible, and then merchandise, market and get it exhibited at the Museum of the Bible here in Washington.”

Kathleen wrote: “Thank you for sharing yours and your father’s amazing story with us. We couldn’t wait to recommend the exhibition to all of our friends. We look forward to keeping up with the collection and it’s journey. We wish you the best!”

Follow us on a short walk through: