When Karl Berry walked into an Orthodox Church for the first time in 1983, he saw icons of black saints. He and his wife were living in Atlanta at the time, and visiting a friend when they stopped by. He would never forget the day he first encountered St. Moses the Black and St. Cyprian of Carthage.
“My first thought was that these were just some very liberal white people who were doing some outreach and trying to appeal to black people,” Berry, now known as Father Moses, told The Daily Beast. The priest told him that they were actually replicas of third century icons, linking back to a Christianity that originated hundreds of years ago.
“And that was my first introduction to the universal church, not just in theory or in words but in actual depictions of saints from different countries who were always part of the development of Christendom,” he said.