Church sees itself in whole new light Woman donates stained glass ELLICOTT CITY/ELKRIDGE

September 28, 1992|By Lan Nguyen | Lan Nguyen,Staff Writer

Two new stained glass windows at the Epiphany Lutheran Church in Ellicott City are letting in more light -- and lifting the spirits of the congregation.

An elderly Columbia woman donated the windows -- worth around $25,000 -- in August as a way to memorialize her husband. Since then, the congregation has taken a new pride in church.

"They seem to have rejuvenated the congregation," said the Rev. David Berg. "I feel when God works, we should be prepared for his surprises."

Members have been busy polishing its brass doorknobs, slapping on a new coat of paint, pulling poison ivy and trimming hedges -- all thanks to the windows, Pastor Berg said.

The benefactor is not a church member, though she belongs to one of Pastor Berg's Bible study groups and attended a Christmas Mass at the church last year. She offered the donation in May.

"It wasn't something we were looking for," said Pastor Berg. "It wasn't something we were seeking, by any means."

She has asked not to have her name revealed to the general public. But the church, tucked away in the 9100 block of Sybert Drive in Columbia Hills, honored her at a dedication ceremony yesterday.

Both windows are adorned with 32-inch medallions -- in one, a manger and a nativity star symbolize the birth of Christ; in the other, a heaven-descended dove spreads its wings over seven flames, symbolizing the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. They stand 18-feet high, 5 1/2 -feet wide and were designed by "Great Panes" of Ellicott City.

The windows replaced pieces of colored Plexiglas.

The light strikes the windows in a most beautiful way -- "it's kind of like walking into a rainbow, to have the sun and the clouds pouring in colored light into the chancel," the pastor said. "Sometimes, the light will strike these jewels, and these dots of blue lights will sparkle themselves on the carpet in the chancel. It's just gorgeous."

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