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Word God

The of in stained glass

Par k Cities Pr esby ter ian Chu r c h 1

Cover: “I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.” —John 12:32 The stained glass window on the front cover was designed for PCPC by Jon Buell and crafted by Dallas glass artist Tim McClure in 2001. They described the message of this window this way: That Jesus Christ came in history to redeem His people has always been the center of the church’s adoration and praise. His coming as the True God-Man is depicted in this window. Beginning at the lower part of the cross, we see that Jesus Christ came into the world and was crucified as the King of the Jews wearing a crown of thorns. Risen and ascended, He sent the Spirit, bringing peace to the church, illustrated by the pomegranate. The Father, who adopted us as His own, the Son, who was the incarnate Word, and the Holy Spirit, who brings us new life represented by the vine, are depicted at the top of the cross. It is the work of all three Persons of the Trinity to redeem us and give us hearts willing to serve Him. In the background are symbols of the Lord’s ministry to and among His people: the Communion cup bringing His blood shed for us; the shell containing the water of baptism; the crown demonstrating His sovereign and eternal reign and the flower representing the passion for God that grows in our hearts because of His covenant of grace. Sit, look, and wonder at the unfathomable grace and mercy of our Lord by which His people have so great a salvation. Unto the Father, and unto the Son, and unto the Holy Spirit, be ascribed in the Church all honor, and glory, might, majesty, dominion, and blessing, now and for ever. Amen.

The photos do little justice to the impact of the stained glass windows, meant to be seen in their setting with natural light bringing their splendor into full radiance. Come enjoy them at: Park Cities Presbyterian Church 4124 Oak Lawn Avenue (@Wycliff) Dallas, Texas 75219 214-224-2500 •

The Word of God in Stained Glass © 2012 Park Cities Presbyterian Church All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored ina retrieval system, or transmitted in any form by any means without prior permission of Park Cities Presbyterian Church. All scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


Table of Contents Introduction: Remarks from Dr. Tezzie Cox


The Chapel Windows


The Word of God in Stained Glass, by Debbie Dunlap


The Small Rose Window


Message in the Window, by Terri Speicher


Jesus in the Stained Glass Windows, A guide to the Sanctuary window themes


Overview Photos of the Sanctuary Windows


Windows in Lower Series

The preexistent Christ


Christ of the law


Christ in the Psalms


Christ in prophecy


Christ’s genology


Christ’s advent


Christ’s ministry


Christ the sin bearer


Christ’s passion


Christ’s resurrection


The living Christ


the glorified Christ


Samples of Upper Level Windows


Samples of Foyer Windows


Details from Three Windows



Introduction (Edited remarks taken from a talk given by Dr. Tezzie J. Cox at PCPC shortly after PCPC’s founding in 1991.) Stained glass, to me, is an art form because of its relationship to light. Joseph Conrad, the British novelist, defines art as man’s attempt to render the highest kind of justice to the visible universe by bringing light to truth—an attempt in its forms and in its lights and shadows and in its colors to determine what is fundamental and enduring—what illuminates the truth of existence. The artist, like the scientist, strives to evoke man’s credulity through his response to the abstract. As in literature, to reach the sublime in the appreciation of a stained glass window, the viewer must be able to perceive the symbolism and the imagery beyond the real. Subsequently, man reaches the highest spiritual truth which gives justice to the visible universe. Because of its relationship to light, stained glass remains unique. Genesis 1:3,4a says, “God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light, and God saw that the light was good.” Then light was the intangible phenomenon by which the world was made. Since its creation, light has been been equated with goodness, beauty, and divine revelation. God used the light of a star to direct the wise men to Bethlehem. It was blinding light on the road to Damascus that changed Saul, the sinner, to Paul, the preacher. Then, in Luke 2:23, Christ is called “the light of the world.” John 1:4 tells us, “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.” Without light, stained glass would be a mere collage of glass surrounded by masonry. And because of its reaction to reflected light, stained glass becomes the most unique of all art forms. Although the use of stained glass can be traced back only to the 12th century, we have evidence through excavation that glass itself goes back to at least 700 BC. Alexander the Great died in Persia. His body was brought back to Egypt, but his burial was delayed for a year because it was determined he should be buried in the best of coffins—a crystal one. Soon after he was buried the body and the coffin disappeared and have not been found to this day. Historian Pleni says that the discovery of stained glass was accidental by overheating silicate. Nevertheless, as far as stained glass on the continent of Europe goes, perhaps the oldest stained glass in the world today is the Prophet window in the cathredal at Augsberg, Germany. Some of the inspiration of glassmaking in Europe came from the Crusade pilgrims returning from the Holy Land through Venice, Italy, and Bohemia, where glassmaking was already in progress. Skilled artisans can make beautiful glass; it requires, however, a theologian, an artist, and a craftsman to create the windows that become not only cataracts of color but revelations of spiritual messages. Albert Sugar, considered the father of Gothic architecture, asked for stained glass windows in his cathedrals because he believed the radiant windows would illuminate man’s mind so that he might travel through light to an apprehension of God’s light—from a material world to a world of the spirit by uniting the finite with the infinite. a May our stained glass windows at PCPC cause every worshipper who enters our doors to apprehend with awe the majesty of our God and His glorious message of the gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ— His plan from the creation of light to the cross and resurrection to that day when all who believe will live forever in the glory of His radiance that needs no other light.


The Chapel Windows “He entered the most holy place once for all by His own blood, having obtained eternal redemption.” (from Hebrews 9:12).

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power, wealth, wisdom, strength, honor, glory, praise forever and ever, AMEN! (from Revelation 5:12).

One majestic theme of worship focuses on the great high priestly work of our Savior Jesus Christ in, once for all, offering up Himself to be the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world (1 John 4:9-11). These two windows capture this theme, employing Old and New Testament imagery and thereby indicating the unity and comprehensiveness of this theme in the Holy Scriptures. The left window depicts the Holy of Holies with the ark of the covenant. Here the high priest entered once a year, on the day of atonement, to present the sin offering for the people (Leviticus 16). The cross, rising from the mercy seat in this scene, symbolizes the Lord’s promised atonement, fulfilled by the one sacrifice of Christ, to which all other sacrifices point. The foreshadowing of the Lord¹s death in the left window is contrasted with Christ¹s triumph in the right window. You, the viewer, not only look back at the complete victory of Christ over sin and death on the cross, but anticipate the day when all creatures in heaven and earth will say, “Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!” (Revelation 5:13).


The Word of God in Stained Glass by Debbie Dunlap (first printed in PCPC WITNESS, November, 1993)

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.” ­­ —John 1:1, 2 Quite often members and visitors to PCPC have commented on the beautiful stained glass windows lining the walls of our Sanctuary. Not only do we at PCPC enjoy the sense of God’s Spirit and fellowship within our Sanctuary walls, we are privileged to bask in the glory of God through the outward beauty of these windows, the message of which is found in the first two verses of John. In 1954, when the growing congregation of Highland Park Baptist Church authorized work to begin on a new Sanctuary, a committee headed by Mr. Raymond Jones was formed to oversee the installation of the stained glass windows. At the time, the budget allowed $10,000 for the installation of temporary glass until funds could be raised to cover the cost of stained glass. However, the new young minister, Dr. Charles Pitts, who now lives in Cleburne, Texas, recalls that he approached the committee with the idea of raising all the money all at once by having each window donated by a member’s family or Sunday School class as a tribute or memorial. Within 30 days the entire amount for the stained glass windows was raised. Work proceded on the windows with Dr. Pitts and the committee dedicating themselves to the overall theme the windows would portray. “The Word of God in Stained Glass.” Lamb Studios in Tennefly, New Jersey, was commissioned to do the work. Mr. George D. Reese, the executive vice-president of the company, spent time exclusively with Dr. Pitts and the coomittee formulating the artwork and particular theme of each window. An artist specializing in stained glass was flown in. Each window donor was given the opportunity to see and approve the artwork before the actual glasswork began. Dr. Pitts laughs when he relates how Mr. Reese was an Episcopalian, and quite a few “lively conversations” about baptism were held when it came time to work of the smaller rose window over the baptistry. Dr. Pitts also notes that the baptistry window, the theme of which is The Trinity, has the highest quality glass and coloring. [This window was moved during PCPC’s renovation of the Sanctuary in 2005 and now hangs over the stairwell near the Information Center.] According to PCPC member and local authority on stained glass, Dr. Tezzie Cox, the quality in all of the windows is outstanding. “There is particularly excellent coloring of the cobalt blue in the windows,” she says. Dr. Cox also comments that “the arrangement of the windows is interesting.” Beginning at the southeast corner with the two upper windows, which spell out the entire message, and traveling around the Santuary in a clockwise manner, one can see Old Testament depictions and then the depictions of the life of Christ. In the foyer are four windows which deal separately with the four Gospels. Perhaps most striking is the Great Rose Window on the western wall. This window was designed by Dr. Pitts, who worked on it for over a year. He says, “It was truly a joyous experience.” Perhaps some of that joy came from knowing that this window is so fully and completely symbolic of Christ. For instance, the twelve petals spreading out from the center of the window stand for the community of the twelve apostles who were sent into all the world to share Christ. The intense rose red of the petals reminds us of Christ’s courage and sacrifice, and between the deep red petals are seen four long golden thorns, reminding us of His suffering.


Just as we are exhorted by our pastor, Skip Ryan, to make PCPC a church without walls, with God reaching down so that we may reach out to Dallas and the world, we are continually reminded as we sit in our beautiful Sanctuary that we are a church surrounded, both literally and figuratively, by the power of the Word of God. the message of our staned glass windows can be shared with everyone—anytime, anywhere.

The small rose window, which was originally housed on the wall behind the choir loft in the Sanctuary, is now suspended about the stairway just beyond the Information Center.




Message in the Window

by Terri Speicher (first printed in PCPC WITNESS, January 1994) If you are among the fortunate who have visited the great Catheral of Chartres, France, you might be led to reminisce about your trip as you ponder the beauty of our Great Rose Window at PCPC. The twelve-petal design and smaller center circle you see there are classical symbols first developed at Chartres. If you haven’t seen the original, climb the stairs to the balcony someday and take a few moments to be inspried by this treasure we are gaining as we purchase this building. Former Highland Park Baptist minister, Dr. Charles Pitts, who designed the window in 1954, desired that it be a clear depiction of the gospel and the person of Jesus Christ. The centrally located Lamb of God in white radiates the glow of the sun and stands in front of a golden cross from which hang the letters Alpha and Omega. The message is clear: because of His obedience, Christ reigns through all eternity. Radiating from the center, twelve petals represent the spreading of the gospel by the twelve apostles. The petals’ predominately deep red color reminds us of the apostles courage and sacrfice, while the golden thorns between them keep us mindful of Christ’s suffering for us. Within the petals are numerous traditional symbols of each apostle, built upon what we know of their lives and particular missions or the means of their deaths. As our eye continues to move outward, we come to the clusters of blooms sprouting green and gold leaves surrounding a center rose. These clusters terminate in six symbols, which display six attributes of God and name each attribute in golden letters against blue and green. At the top on the left appears the burning bush with its name WISDOM. Balancing this attribute on the right is the shepherd’s crook surrounding the red heart below, on which appears the word LOVE. This juxtaposition symbolizes that, through Christ, the cherished gift of widsom is to be tranformed into the redeeming power of love. On each side of the rose in the middle appear the two symbols on the left of the crown and scepter with the word MAJESTY, while balanced on the right appears the symbol of the rainbow and the word MERCY. Here we find a visual representation of a great truth: God, in His supreme majesty and sovereignty, revealed Himself to man in Jesus Christ, who expressed His power in humility, sacrifice, and saving mercy. The strong tower, with the word POWER, appears on the lower left of the rose, whilce on the lower right appear the sword and the balance of scales with the word JUSTICE. God’s unlimited power is always administered in complete aligment with His perfect justice. He is holy in all that He is and does. Next in the consecutive circle spreading out into the rose window appear the twelve clusters of fruit. The colors and forms vary widely in them, signifying twelves types of fruit found among the leaves of the tree of life. Each fruit represents a month of the year and the ongoing, yet seasonal nature of the church’s mission. The petals thus symbolize the leaves of the tree of life, meant to serve in the healing of the nations. Between each branch of fruit in six directions can be seen blue petals, which balance the white cross surrounding four additional white crosses. These symbols together represent the missionary impulses of the church throughout the centuries. Finally, again in the outermost circle, small crosses appear. They are grouped two-by-two in six directions around the window, reminding us of the first missionaries sent out by Jesus in pairs. Not only is the dominant theme one of spreading the Gospel, the pairs of crosses speak to us of brotherly love and the church as the family of God. We will be known by our love for one another. As we gaze at our Great Rose Window, we see depicted the centrality of Jesus Christ and the surpassing greatness of our God. Just as the petals spread out from the center and fruit appears, we are called to bear fruit because of the person of Christ at work in each of us and to radiate His good news outward from this building to a needy world.



Jesus in the Stained Glass Windows Park Cities Presbyterian Church

A guide to the Sanctuary window themes organ


upper series

upper series

lower series

APOCRYPHAL Tree of Life seven candles

20 27

THE EPISTLES shell over cross book and sword

26 25

XI The living Christ (“Lo, I am with you”)

ACTS ship of church cloven flames

24 23

X Christ’s resurrection (empty tomb)

The preexistent Christ I (creation of the world)

5 Creator’s eye 6 ark and rainbow

THE GOSPELS three crosses 22 spear and sponge 21

IX Christ’s passion (crucifixion)

Christ of the law (Moses and the burning bush)


7 Abraham’s alter 8 Jacob’s ladder

crown of thorns crossed palms

VIII Christ the sin bearer (Gethsemane)

Christ in the Psalms (David sings to Saul)


POETRY 9 harp 10 Ark of the temple

Christ in prophecy (Isaiah and the seraphim)


PROPHECY 11 fiery chariot 12 Daniel’s vision

Christ’s geneology (tree of Jesse)


GenealogY 13 moon of Gabriel 14 Annunciation

XII The glorified Christ (second coming)

THE LOGOS 1 the Word 2 the Life

Four symbols from John 1: “In the beginning was the Word”

3 the light 4 the unknowing darkness

lower series

20 19

book and crook 18 cross and two fish 17

VII Christ’s ministry (calling disciples) balcony

star of epiphany star of nativity

16 15

VI Christ’s advent (nativity scene)

the rose window

foyer vestibule 1 2 Matthew Mark

4 3 Luke John


North Sanctuary Wall

South Sanctuary Wall


Sanctuary Windows Lower series I. The preexistent Christ (creation of the world) “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters” (Genesis 1:1,2).

II. Christ of the law (Moses and the burning bush) “And the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush. He looked, and behold, the bush was burning, yet it was not consumed” (Exodus 3:2).


III. Christ in the Psalms (David sings to Saul) “And whenever the harmful spirit from God was upon Saul, David took the lyre and played it with his hand. So Saul was refreshed and was well, and the harmful spirit departed from him” (1 Samuel 16:23).

IV. Christ in prophecy (Isaiah and the seraphim) “In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of His robe filled the temple. Above Him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: ‘ Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!’” (Isaiah 6:1-3).


V. Christ’s geneology (tree of Jesse) In that day the root of Jesse, who shall stand as a signal for the peoples— of Him shall the nations inquire, and His resting place shall be glorious” (Isaiah 11:10).

VI. Christ’s advent

(nativity scene) “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11).


VII. Christ’s ministry

(calling disciples)

“While walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And He said to them, “Follow Me, andI will make you fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed Him” (Matthew 4:18-20).

VIII. Christ the sin bearer (Gethsemane) “And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me. nevertheless, not My will, but Yours, be done.’ And there appeared to Him an angel from heaven, strengthening Him” (Luke 22:41-43).


IX. Christ’s passion (crucifixion) “So they took Jesus, and He went out, bearing His own cross, to the place called The Place of a Skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha. There they crucified Him, and with Him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them. Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It read, ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews’” (John 19:16b-19).

X. Christ’s resurrection

(empty tomb) “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how He told you, while He was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise. And they remembered His words” (Luke 24:5b-9).


XI. The living Christ

(“Lo, I am with you”) “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:18b-20).

XII. The glorified Christ (second coming) “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also” (John 14:1-3).


Samples of Upper Series Windows The Word 1. the Word 2. the Life

The Gospel 16. star of epiphany 17. star of nativity


Samples of Narthex Windows window above Mark

window above Luke Matthew (detail)

John (detail) Mark (detail)

Luke (detail)



The Word of God in Stained Glass  
The Word of God in Stained Glass  

May our stained glass windows at PCPC cause every worshipper who enters our doors to apprehend withawe the majesty of our God and His glorio...