Christ, the Light of Life

A Tour of The Faceted Glass Windows of The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer

Our nave windows were designed by Mr. Nick Perendo of the Hunt Studios in Pittsburgh, who worked closely with members of the congregation. Constructed of a non-traditional faceted glass, the windows contain large pieces of glass cut with facets set in symbolic patterns in epoxy cement. The smaller windows to the right when you are facing the altar depict the glory of our Lord, while the windows on the larger windows on the left depict Old Testament themes weaving their way into the New Testament. Try to find the Cross in each window and remember Christ’s sacrifice for us.

This tour of the windows begins with the Chancel window then proceeds to the smaller windows on the right, beginning in the front and moving toward the back, then across the nave to the larger windows, from back to front, and ending above the baptismal font.

Christ, the Light of Life and the Light of the World

The foremost of the windows is located in the Chancel. The solitary window symbolizes that Jesus Christ is the single source of Light and God’s Grace in a sinful world. During the morning hours, colors stream across the altar area. At the top is the Chi-Rho (the first two Greek letters of the name of Christ). The stars symbolize God’s people carrying the Light of God’s Grace to the world, while the three sunbursts portray the Gospel message of the Triune God. In the center, a swirl of light shows God’s creative energy during the Creation.

Christ, the Resurrected Lord

Located above the pulpit we see the butterfly, an ancient symbol of our Lord’s Resurrection. The open tomb is shown with light streaming from it. The hour glass and the three grave stones with blue crosses testify that the faithful Christian shall also conquer death.

Christ, the Lord of Nature

From the billowing clouds fall rain and snow which sustain the earth. The red-roofed house is built upon the Rock, Christ Jesus. The ship contains the disciples on stormy seas which only He has the power to calm.

Christ, the Provider

By the shafts of wheat containing five loaves of bread, we are reminded that we receive our daily bread. These and two small fish are referred to in Christ’s miracle of the feeding of the five thousand. The green backbround is symbolic of Christian growth and productive lands. Christ is the Bread of Life who offered Himself upon the altar of the Cross to atone for our sins.

Christ, the Great Physician

The olive branches produce oil used in anointing the sick and in Holy Baptism, are a symbol of healing as is the caduceus, which recalls Moses lifting up the serpent in the wilderness. The rainbow is a reminder of God’s covenant with mankind.

Christ, the Incarnate Lord

The six-pointed Star of David appearing over Bethlehem casts its light upon the manger. The sunburst halo is over the head of the baby Jesus. We are reminded of the music of the angels celebrating His birth in the five-lined musical staff with unstemmed notes surrounding the orb of the earth.

Good Friday—Calvary and the Death of Christ

Isaiah foretold Christ’s suffering in the Old Testament, and we are reminded of his prophecy by the nail. The purple skull is a reminder of Golgotha, a Hebrew word meaning "place of the skull," where Christ was crucified for our sins. Rising from the skull is the white cross of Christ and two green crosses of the thieves, the lighter one being that of the repentant thief.

Maundy Thursday—Eucharist and Old and New Covenants

The nation of Israel, God’s chosen people with whom the Old Covenant was made, is symbolized by the sunburst. The twelve tribes, shown as triangles, split into the northern and southern kingdoms. The new covenant, which had its beginning in the Lord’s Supper, is indicated by the Chalice and Wafer. Christ was accompanied by twelve disciples, signified by eleven white crosses and one black cross for Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Christ.

Transfiguration of Christ

Jonah, who disobeyed God, was swallowed by the great fish after being cast from the ship. Elijah, shown as the wheel of the flaming chariot and red mantle, and Moses, signified by the two tablets of the Law, appeared with our Lord at the Transfiguration. IHC, which is the Greek monogram for Jesus Christ, is encapsulated in a fish-like shape, symbolic of the Church, the Body of Christ.

Pentecost—The Holy Spirit and Holy Baptism

The Jordon River, site of Christ’s baptism, flows from the drops of blue water cascading from the shell, the ancient symbol of baptism. On Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came in the rush of a mighty wind (the splash of sweeping colors) and as tongues of red flame alighting on the heads of the faithful. The Holy Spirit, symbolized by the dove, is the Comforter sent by Christ after His ascension to the Father.

Christ the King

The lyre or harp was played by the Psalmist David. The winding vine is the branch of Jesse, David’s Father. The three kingly crowns are those of David, Solomon and the royal line of Judah, providing the lineage of our Lord. His cross is interlocked with crown rising above the symbols of His Creation: the rainbow, stars and globe. He, alone, is King of Heaven and Earth.

Two additional windows grace the vestibule of the church. The Tudor Rose and the Heart are traditional symbols of the Lutheran Church.

Come and Meet the Light of Life

We invite you to join us on Sunday mornings when we gather in worship of Christ, the Light of Life. It is He who gives us life and sustains it. It is He who fills our lives with the richness of His blessings. It is He who forgives our sins and calls us to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Him. It is He who promises eternal life to all who believe in Him.

If you would like to learn more about the Light of Life, join us on Sunday mornings when we study His Word, the Holy Bible, with classes for ages three through adults.