The Stained Glass Windows
We consider it a privilege to live and worship here in an area where the beauty of God’s creation is so spectacular. These windows are a reminder that when we see the mountains, trees, streams, and wildlife, we should praise God who designed and made all these things, and us as well.
Most of the windows are memorials to individuals who helped start the church or construct the building. On the wall beside the windows you will find a plaque with information about those individuals. You will also learn about some “hidden” symbols in the windows.
The windows were made over a fifteen-year period starting in the 1980′s. Each was designed and crafted by Mary Matchael of Crystal Glass Studio now located in Aspen.
We suggest the following verses for meditation as you view the windows:
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1
“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of this hands.” Psalm 19:1
“Since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature- have been clearly seen being understood from what has been made.” Romans 1:20
Valley Journal Article
July 19, 1990
In a few areas is natures sublime beauty and spirit so revered by its local artists and artisans than the Crystal River Valley. Painters, sculptors, potters and others have created uncounted works depicting various aspects of our natural community. And one of the most inspiring has recently been completed and installed at the Church at Redstone.
Mary Matchael, art glass designer and owner of Crystal Glass Studio in Carbondale, has recently installed her latest work at the Redstone Church. The three-panel mural in stained glass celebrates the beauty of God’s creation of the four seasons in the Crystal River Valley. Each panel was commissioned and paid for by private parties. The design was significantly influenced by the requests of the donors. Mary described the design of the windows as follows:
“The first window was dedicated to Lynn Clark Colbert, the architect who designed the church, but was killed in a car accident near Vail before the church was completed.
“Her parents in Texas and several others in different parts of the country saw a rainbow at the time of her death, not knowing abut the accident at the time. They decided that the rainbow had some significance and requested that there be a rainbow in the design. Her children requested a yellow rose as it was her favorite flower and they would give her a rose every year for her birthday.
“Lynn’s boyfriend gave me a crystal heart that she had given him and asked if it could be included in the panel. There were other requests for something representative of the area, so I chose to use the aspens as the main theme for the panel.
“The idea of the rainbow piercing through the aspens and highlighting the dove came to me in a dream and the rest just fell into place.
“The yellow rose, representing Lynn’s spirit joined with the Spirit of God, was placed in the beak of the dove. The Crystal heart became a leaf, backed with green glass, touching her nameplate. This first, panel (4 x 12) was complete and dedicated in November 1986.
“The two side panels (each 3 X 71/2) were commissioned in December of 1989. Since the main theme for the mural was already established with the aspens, I decided to incorporate the changing of the leaves through the Four Seasons.
“One of the panels was donated by Daniel and Nancy Chapman of Dallas, Texas in honor of their parents, Mary and Abner McCall in memory of Yonnie and Staden Chapman. The honorees both loved hummingbirds, and golden aspens. The McCalls are associated with bears as he was President of Baylor University for years and had an extensive bear collection.
“The hummingbirds and golden aspens were not a problem for me, but the bear? We compromised by using the bear in a way that it is not obvious, but it is there if you look for it. You can see the outline of the bear’s head and back in the lead lines of the foreground coming from behind a tree. The Chapman’s agreed that this would be acceptable. A branch of one of the aspens in the upper window also forms the CaiRo (symbol for Jesus Christ) surrounded by three hummingbirds representing the Trinity. The aspens are graced by rays of light in beveled glass piercing through the trees as with rainbow; the columbine and wheat were also requests. This panel depicts summer turning to fall.
“The other side panel was donated by Bess Clarke and her family and friends, in memory of James M. Clarke. Bess requested the river and fish, as they have a place on the river and her husband enjoyed it so. I used the Christian fish symbol in the river highlighted by rays of beveled glass signifying the presence of God’s grace. This panel depicts the aspens turning from winter to spring.”
The first panel was designed by Matchael and fabrication assisted by Vicky Broyles. The recent panels were also designed by Mary and assisted by Mindy Miller. The fabrication was headed by Kathy Werning, assisted by Shannon Gilmer and Mindy Miller.