The Rose Window: the “breaking forth” of the Gospel…

OK. I’ll admit that I like Advent Sunday. Do you?

There’s something stirring and galvanizing about revisiting the message of the prophets, who remind us to awaken ourselves from complacency to listen afresh to the message of salvation.

It is an annual reminder of the fact that we need to hear, and we need to respond to, the Good News of God in Jesus Christ. It is the chance to dust off the vocal cords and processe around the church to the dulcet tones of the Great Litany.

This Sunday, I’m going to explore the message of Advent in the context of a magnificent work of art that is in our Church.

I’m going to be talking about the imagery of the Tiffany window which we know as the Rose Window, in the context of the “breaking forth” of the message of the Gospel. Come prepared to stand during the sermon time, as I’m going to be asking that we all do a radical thing—that is to turn around and look at the window while I speak about it.

It is a curious thing about Saint Paul’s that both the Altar and the Rose Window are most striking with a distanced perspective. In part, that is why people at our parish tend to sit towards the back. Actually, the sanctuary of Saint Paul’s (the area around the Altar) looks stunning from the Green; I’ve seen many a person freeze in their tracks while they were walking across the Green in the summer when the doors are opened. So magnificent is the view!

Also, I might add that since the Rose Window looks better in perspective, it might be a better choice to sit closer to the front of the Church, rather than towards the back!

It has been a few years since we’ve offered an Advent time of prayer. This year, I’m offering a “Less than Quiet Evening” on Monday, December 13th, beginning with the Eucharist at 7 PM. I hope that many of us will use this opportunity to reflect on our faith, and the reason for the season.


Fr. Greg+

(The Rose Window may be seen at the parish website:


About canongreg

I have been Rector of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Wellsboro, PA since 1994.
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