Tiffany Windows “In terms of minds tense with troubles and anxieties, relaxed by their satisfying harmonies, of wearied spirits rested by their serene beauty, of souls inspired to greater heights, their value is inestimable. Their contribution to the life of this generation and of future generations can be expressed not in terms of money, but in terms of character. Each window in its exquisite beauty is a sermon and a prayer as well as a treasured work of art.”(Make me a Sanctuary by Helen Estey Macferran, first published in 1947)
The Tiffany Windows of First Presbyterian Church of Topeka, installed in 1911 for a cost of $14,000 represent not only a resplendent addition to the treasury of religious art but serve as continual inspiration to pilgrims on a spiritual journey. Their value cannot be assessed in terms of monetary appraisals or even captured by the word “irreplaceable,” which they are.
The windows display an iridescent quality, their hues and accents changing with the light outside or inside the sanctuary, even with the differing moods of the viewer. There is, therefore, no “ideal” time to view the windows, and, as long as even a glimmer of light flickers in the skies, the windows continue to work their charms. Each viewing, each journey, will reveal something new, something not seen before, some new meaning or nuance to the family biblical stories they depict.
Enter respectfully, view the windows reverently, and reflect on their meaning prayerfully.