In late 1921, vandals shattered the original windows of the church with rocks. Colored, rectangular flat-drawn glass, readily available at that time was used to replace the windows. Eventually textured plastic panes were installed as replacements in the 1970’s.
In 2003 a congregation member, Michele Justice, felt commissioned by the Lord to undertake replacement of the existing panels with stained glass windows. The congregation at Liberty UMC began the Stained Glass Window Project in 2007-2008 with the intent to replace all the Sanctuary windows with new designs. Pastor Beverly Ritland (2003-2020), proposed the idea for window images to represent the community of believers encircling the church as they extended their hands to one another and Michele’s sister, Diana Thomas, developed the design theme: A Circle of Followers.
One design feature predominant in the primary Sanctuary windows, with the exception of the Jesus Welcomes and arched transom window, is the cross motif with symbolic emblems. Tour visitors will also note the windows do not have the traditional dedication plaques used when a donation has been made to honor a specific person or family. The new windows are a project of the entire congregation and all members can contribute in any number of ways and when they may, making the windows a labor of love.
The windows are unique in that they do not portray traditional Bible scenes of old but are instead a continuation of the living book of Acts. These contemporary designs are a pictorial representation of the Body of Christ, His Church, as it lives to serve and follow him at Liberty UMC.
The windows are also our invitation. When completed the windows will be a visible outreach to passersby on the busy thoroughfare to show the Gospel of Christ shared at Liberty UMC is for everyone.
Take a virtual tour and visit each completed window by clicking the individual links below. Future windows are summarized under ‘Coming 2023’.