Update: Given the level of interest and feeling this post has garnered since it was initially published, readers are encouraged to take a look at the two follow-up pieces. Click here for the first, and here for the second.

To be honest, I didn’t even know Thomas Kinkade was dead. That was until I read this fascinating piece on Kinkade, America’s favorite sentimental “Painter of Light,” from The Daily Beast by Zac Bissonnette: “The Drunken Downfall of Evangelical America’s Favorite Painter.” I also had no idea Kinkade was (a) an Evangelical Christian and (b) an alcoholic. The story is at once alarming,…

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