Artist Linda Carole Schafer was inducted into the Acadian Museum’s Order of Living Legends in a private ceremony on Monday.
Schafer’s career as an angel artist began one night in January of 1995 while she was praying for one of her daughters, according to Andy Perrin, chairman of the Executive Committee of the Acadian Museum.
An angel appeared and changed her life forever, according to a prepared statement from the museum. At first she thought that she must be dreaming but she was wide awake, the statement said. That vision was an answer to prayer and changed her daughter’s life as well. She painted what she saw and that was her first angel painting.
In the following years Schafer began to paint miracles; some she experienced, and others were told to her. She would write the story to go with the painting and they were inspirational, Perrin said in the statement.
People were brought together from many walks of life by her paintings because they could relate to them. Some were rich and some were poor. If they could not afford to buy them, she gave it to them, Perrin said. Schafer painted and donated to many foundations and programs to raise money to help people. She donated paintings for the Catholic Bishop Services Appeal, and prints were made to raise money for the poor in the churches in Louisiana. She also painted for the Arthritis Association, the Cancer Society and the Walk for Life in Washington.
Schafer was commissioned by the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) to do the painting “Angel of Louisiana.” Prints were made and framed and presented to the Marquis de Lafayette and 36 counts and countesses who traveled from France to visit the Attakapas Chapter of the SAR in Lafayette. A print of that painting hangs in their National Archives. She still does inspirational paintings and continues her work.
Schafer said she is in the process of writing a book about the stories behind her paintings.
When asked if she will stop painting angels if they ever go out of style she laughed and said, “They have been around forever and are not going anywhere. I will paint inspirational paintings as long as there is breath in my body. They only have to give one person hope. When I leave and cross over to the other side, I will just paint in the sky.”
Schafer has been married to Arthur “Butch” Schafer for 54 years and they had five children: Sharon, Mary Beth, Shelly, Kelly and John.