The East Window,
Conceived by Shirazeh Houshiary (born 1955),
Unveiled in 2008,
Glass and steel frame
© Church of St. Martin in the Fields, London

The East Window,
Conceived by Shirazeh Houshiary (born 1955),
Unveiled in 2008,
Glass and steel frame
© Church of St. Martin in the Fields, London

Gospel of 8 May 2020

There are many rooms in my Father's house

John 14:1-6

Jesus said to his disciples:

'Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God still, and trust in me. There are many rooms in my Father's house; if there were not, I should have told you. I am going now to prepare a place for you, and after I have gone and prepared you a place, I shall return to take you with me; so that where I am you may be too. You know the way to the place where I am going.'

Thomas said, 'Lord, we do not know where you are going, so how can we know the way?'

Jesus said: 'I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through me.'

Reflection on the Glass Window

This window at the Church of St. Martin in the Fields (Trafalgar Square, London) has always fascinated me. Beautiful in its simplicity, it is reminiscent of a cross, with the horizontal and vertical lines coming together in a central opening that allows rays of light to pass uninterruptedly through its clear glass. The monochromatic window produces different light at different times of the day. The absence of colour makes the presence of nature's natural light even stronger. The project was commissioned to replace a window that had been shattered by bombs during the Second World War. Designed by Shirazeh Houshiary, and unveiled in 2008, the once dark, shattered corner of the church, is now a light, bright space.

Just as this window is beautiful in its simplicity, so is the fact that the night before Jesus will be executed in horrific circumstances, He is comforting and consoling his friends with this message, beautiful in its simplicity: 'Do not let your hearts be troubled!' To the very end, Christ continues to teach us and love us. This gets underlined even further when he says that 'there are many rooms in my Father's house,' giving us this homely feeling, that we are all part of His and His Father's spiritual family. Or as Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955) put it: 

"We are spiritual beings having a human experience, 

not human beings having a spiritual experience."

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