Ramblings for Kirwan Uniting Church's Keep in Touch newsletter 31 March 2019
Stained glass windows in cathedrals and churches are lovely. Sometimes they tell a story, with holy characters, perhaps from the Holy Family, or angels, or representations of the Trinity. Other times they appear just to be beautiful works of art, although the artists may have a story in their mind to which we’re not privy. Among the loveliest are the North End Rose Windows in the three great, matching cathedrals of Notre Dame, Chartres and Reims (the latter city is the home of famous Champagne houses, too, another work of art although of a different sort 😊 🍾 ) You might have visited one or all of them.
Jesus said that his disciples, you and me included, I hope, are the light of the world. That phrase, “The World”, was pejorative when I was a child and teenager. Pretty well anything enjoyable was “Worldly”, as distinct from church activities which were said to be sanctified. But you know what? That light which you see streaming in through the Rose Window comes from outside, from “The World”. The artist designs it so that from the outside, looking in toward the cathedral, the window is pretty enough but quite dull. You have to look out, toward the world, to have your senses swamped by those glorious colours. We are more properly the light IN the world. That world which God loved so much that he sent his only begotten Son, the Son who was born in a manger IN the world, who went around healing and forgiving IN the world. It is when we look out from our holy huddles to what God is at work doing in the world, where He wants us to be the reflected light of His glory, that light floods back during our worship