The Nave Windows

Sermon on the Plain

Photography by Bill Blanchard

Since the Gospel according to St. Luke inspires most of the windows, the third probably depicts the Sermon on the Plain (Luke 6: 17-49, see Matthew chapters 5-7). Dressed in a white robe decorated with the first three letters (IHS) of his name in Greek, Jesus is blessing the mixed group who have gathered to hear him. Among the listeners we see a shepherd with his staff, a man who strokes his beard in thought, and a young girl resting her head on her mother's arm. In the background are cypress and palm trees.


In the quatrefoil above the lancets, we find the intertwined Greek letters alpha (A) and omega (W). "A" is the first letter of the Greek alphabet; "W" is the last. This symbol recalls God's declaration "I am the first and I am the last" (Isaiah 44:6), rendered by the letters "A" and "W"; and "I am the Alpha and the Omega..."


(Revelation 1:8; 22:12-13). The teaching of Jesus builds upon the Torah, the Prophets and the Writings (the three parts of the Jewish Scriptures), which remains as the foundation for understanding God the Father's will (see Matthew 5:17-20; Luke 16:16-17).


The scroll at the base indicates that the window was "Donated by the Alumni."