As Merrimack College sought a new stained glass window for the chancel of the Collegiate Church of Christ the Teacher, there was an exact tone the window would need to set.
“We were looking for a window that would be striking and large enough for the wall, but primarily, a window that drew people into the mystery and beauty of Christ,” Merrimack College Chief of Staff Father Bryan Kerns, O.S.A., explained. “A window depicting the Resurrection was perfect for that. Nothing else even came close.”
Installation was completed at the beginning of January on the refurbished 12-foot-by-30-foot window depicting the resurrection of Jesus Christ, marking one of the final pieces of the renovation of the Collegiate Church of Christ the Teacher and new Student Union. the modernized campus gateway was officially reopened to the Merrimack community on Tuesday, Jan. 17.
Fr. Bryan found the stained glass window through Adrian Hamers, a New York-based business that specializes in church interiors. The window was originally made in the 1920s by the now-defunct glass manufacturers, J. Morgan and Sons.
“(The window) shows Christ victorious over death, coming out of the tomb in his glorified resurrected state,” said Father Raymond Dlugos, O.S.A., Merrimack’s vice president of mission and ministry. “There are angels around him and the guards that the Romans had sent who fell asleep. It is the central mystery of our faith, so it really allows the space to be marked with a profound, sacred imprint and calls us to our own faith in the resurrection.”
Restoration and installation of the window was led by Paul Prue, a stained glass specialist with more than 40 years of experience.
“There are 74 panels that had to be taken apart, cleaned and assembled back together,” he said. “In the stained glass world this kind of work would be described as monumental.”
It took Prue and eight others around five months to get the glass cleaned and in place.
“Everyone really stepped up,” he said of his team.
The window replaces a three-panel wood carving of Christ the Teacher that was crafted in the 1950s. Fr. Ray says the College is working on the appropriate place within the Collegiate Church for the wood carving.