The Mothers’ Window
The Mothers’ Window was dedicated on Mothers’ Day 1926 and was a gift from almost every family in the parish. It is dedicated “To the Glory of God and in affectionate honor of all Mothers.” The pictures in this window tell the stories of a mother’s joy, tragedy and triumph.
The window was designed by the firm Reynolds, Francis and Rohnstock. The deep blue glass was imported from England. The reds reflect an early thirteenth century French motif. The French motif was probably chosen because of the United States’ close alliance to France at the time the windows were designed.
The 1926 edition of the History of Second Church explains that “The idea of our Mothers’ Window is an evolution from the older custom which honored by specific tribute the memory of a single person – a memorial that only individual or family wealth could grant. Our chancel window is a tribute to all mothers – mothers who are gone, mothers who are with us still, and mothers who are yet to be.”
In the qua-trefoil in the very center at the top is the Dove of God descending from Heaven with the new soul about to be born on earth. Surrounding the dove are the angels of the Madonna, bearing the flower symbolizing purity and the fleur-de-lis, symbolizing service.
The central medallion shows the Madonna and Child. At the left are the adoring Shepherds and on the right the Wise Men, bearing gifts. Above the Wise Men is a lovely picture of mother love – the hen with her brood of chickens. The medallion to the extreme left (upper row) is a scene where Jesus greets his mother in Heaven and crowns her.
In the middle of the center horizontal row of medallions is the scene of the Nativity. On the left is the Annunciation by the Angel to Mary and on the right the Visitation of Mary and Elizabeth. The extreme left panel in this row shows Eve, the Mother of all living things and on the right the Good Shepherd with the lost lamb upon His shoulders, depicting the maternal love of God for the human soul.
The central medallion (lowest row) is Jesus’ farewell to his Mother, as He commends her to the care of his disciple; on the left are Mary and Joseph with the boy in a carpenter’s shop in Nazareth. The extreme left panel shows the journey of the Holy Family to Jerusalem. The extreme right panel shows Jesus blessing the children.