Chapel Stained Glass
Since its dedication in 1992, the Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus has served as the site of thousands of daily services and numerous special events. It was intentionally constructed in the center of campus — reflecting the Seminary community’s emphasis on worship as the central activity of its life and being.
Thanks to a generous gift from the Eugene E. and Nell S. Fincke Memorial Trust, established by the sainted Finckes, stained glass windows will be installed throughout the entirety of the chapel — chancel, transept, nave and narthex in 2019 and 2020. The new windows will depict the humiliation, crucifixion, resurrection, exaltation and second coming of Christ.
The Finckes were generous supporters of the Seminary. In addition to setting aside funds specifically for the installation of new stained glass windows in the chapel, the couple also provided gifts that established endowed professorships and scholarships for students.
When the chapel was designed, it was built with the capacity for stained glass throughout the building but the funding was not available at the time. As such, the only stained glass windows in place in the chapel have been in the chancel since the 1992 chapel dedication. The Fincke’s earmarked gift will fulfill the original plans for the chapel.
A stained glass design committee worked for two years in preparation for the new stained glass windows. The committee is comprised of 10 members: President Dr. Dale A. Meyer, Dean of Chapel Dr. Kent Burreson, Chairman of the Practical Department Dr. David Schmitt, Chairman of the Historical Department Dr. Erik Herrmann, Seminary Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Louis, Dean of Chapel Emeritus Dr. James Brauer, Dovetail Creations Artist Rev. Bill Matzat, Director of Campus Facilities Martin Hague and C&W Services Site Director Nathan Wade.
The committee selected the Te Deum Laudamus (Latin: Holy God, We Praise Your Name), a historic text of praise to God, as the thematic touchpoint and framework for the windows. As a written piece, the Te Deum is rich in theology. It fills the hearts and minds of worshipers with images and figures from Scripture that lead to joyous eternal praise of the Triune God. The stained glass project will forge windows whose light, color and design invite worshipers into several activities: the joyous praise of the Triune God by the created world and human creatures; the remembrance of Christ’s saving work that draws everyone to the Father as Christ rules over all creation until His return on judgment day; and the purpose of the Seminary — to prepare ministers, deaconesses and church workers who with Word and Sacrament carry the Good News of Jesus Christ wherever they are sent.
The committee presented the results of their careful study and received approval from the Seminary’s Board of Regents to proceed with the project.
New theme, same mission
Lynchburg Stained Glass of Lynchburg, Va., has been selected to design and install the new windows. The faceted stained glass window in the chancel of the Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus was removed in October 2019 to make way for new stained glass windows which Lynchburg is designing and fabricating out of leaded glass, which has a longer lifespan than faceted glass. The original chancel window had reached the halfway point of its lifespan; while the new leaded glass windows are projected to last at least 100 years. A specialty of Lynchburg Stained Glass is the artistic use of clear and stained glass to allow in the natural light from the outside, emphasizing God’s creation.
The committee decided the original stained glass window in the chancel, featuring Sts. Timothy and Titus, should be relocated elsewhere on campus so that the resurrected Christ would be the central window, just as He is and remains the center of our worship and praise.
The new windows will divide the worship space into two main areas: the nave and the transepts. In the nave, the windows would celebrate the Te Deum’s opening emphasis upon the praise of God by all creation in heaven and on earth. As one nears the chancel, the transept windows will lead worshipers into the Te Deum’s closing emphasis upon the ministry and work of Christ, tracing his life, death, resurrection and enthronement until His return to judge the living and the dead. The worship space, thus, moves from the praise of all creation to the praise of God’s people specifically for God’s saving work, the mystery made known most fully to us in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Clear glass windows will remain in place until the installation of the new stained glass windows is completed. The original chancel window, featuring Sts. Timothy and Titus, will be repurposed elsewhere on campus although the exact location has not yet been determined.
The name of the chapel will remain unchanged.
The new stained glass windows will offer a more complete display of the Lord Jesus Christ throughout the entirety of the chapel, culminating in the chancel window as a resurrected Jesus Christ takes central place in the worship space above the altar.
Check this page from time to time as updates and photos of the project will be added as the installation progresses.