Stained Glass

Lighting in the Church proper is both natural and artificial. Specially positioned floodlights throughout the structure provide indirect lighting. The natural light is admitted through several and variously shaped glass windows. Three circular windows in the sanctuary above the high altar allow for some exterior light. But the real beauty of natural lighting is noted in the 12 high windows found in the nave of the Church. 

From the right side fron to the rear of the church, tall, elegant and soaring some twelve feet in length, each window is a composite of three openings. Two slender sections contain specially mounted stained-glass pieces in lead and are capped with a cone-shaped head, as if to join them, a small circlet of glass forms the three sections and is usually blue as a basic color. Said to have been constructed in an old-world Austrian process, the glass is thick and cannot be replaced with any contemporary glass product. To assure lasting beauty, the windows were re-enforced and protected with an outer storm glass. 

The first window nearest the Sacred Heart side altar contains two symbols of the four gospel writers. The angel represents St. Matthew, while the lion represents St. Mark.

The opposite facing window nearest the Virgin Mary side altar contains likewise two of the four gospel writers’ symbols. The eagle represents St. John while the ox symbolizes St. Luke.

The next window contains symbols of the elements for the Mass. The staff of wheat becomes the flour for the bread for the Body of Christ. The grapes are crushed to make wine for the Blood of Christ.

The opposite window contains two hearts. One represents the loving Heart of Our Savior that is enflamed with concern for us. The other is the Immaculate Heart of Mary pierced seven times, yet desirous to assist us today and always.

Moving to the third window we note the symbols of God’s authority,

The two tablets of stone stand for the Ten Commandments given to Moses by Yahweh as the moral code of conduct. The two keys are symbolic of the power given to Peter and the Apostles in the New Testament by Christ.

Turning to the opposite window you note symbols of authority in God’s family here on earth. The triple crown is worn by the Pope, successor to St. Peter, symbolizing his authority to teach, to govern and to sanctify. The mitre or bishop’s hat represents the local apostolic authority vested in the Ordinary of the Diocese of Greensburg.

The fourth windows are definitely Christo-centric in the symbolism. The Monstrance, used for exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and procession, holds the Sacred Body of Christ in the Host. The pillar and whip were instruments used to punish Christ for his offenses.

Looking to the other side you note a large, white bird and four letters, the bird is a pelican symbolizing Our Lord, who gave His own Body and Blood for our happiness. The letters, INRI, Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, is the name that will save all peoples. Surrounded by the cross and wreath, we consider the price of our salvation.

A lily and dove are found in the next window. These symbols, like the others are meant to assist us in drawing closer to God by presenting visual aids for our consideration. The lily is for purity. The dove is for peace and also for the Spirit.

The opposite window contains a lamb, representing the Iamb of God, Jesus; and the three-sided pyramid with the ever-seeing Providential of God. Although there are Three Persons in the Trinity, there is only One God.

The last set of the large windows contain capital letters of abbreviated words. IHS for Jesus, Savior of Men. AM is also Latin and stands for Ave Maria or Mary. The former universal language of the Roman Catholic Church is clearly noted here.

Two different harps are pictured in the opposite window. Used as instruments in the Old Testament, the harp accompanied the many psalms and hymns in praise of God. Music, in different forms, is still utilized in worship of God and here in this parish in three languages, Latin, English and Polish.