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Window of the Month
St. Paul's Catholic Church, Onaway, Michigan: artists Peter and Christel Brahm

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Window

Building Name: Mariners' Church

Studio Name: Lamb (J. and R.) Co.

City: Detroit

Window Shape: 4 (rounded or rose window)

Date of Window: 1959

Subject/Title of Window: Browning Compass Window

Brief Description of Subject: According to "The Windows of Old Mariners'" by Jean M. Fox, this rose window, which is in the shape of a mariner's compass, was a memorial to Mrs. Bertie Ann Browning. The Brownings are known locally from their operation of the Bob-Lo boats and the Bob-Lo Island Amusement Park.

In the center is a ship with the mast and a crossing spar forming a cross --- this is the "Ship of the Church". It has the Twelve Apostles aboard and is lit up with a sun halo. Aeolus, the god of wind in Greek and Roman mythology, is blowing wind from all four directions creating waves. This ship will navigate the perils of life by the "Word of God" --- the four Gospels, whose writers are shown here in symbolic form at the North, South, East, and West compass points. Like Noah's ark, this "Ship of the Church" will bring all those aboard to safety.

In Rev. 4:5-8 there are 4 winged creatures that surround the throne of God --- a human, an ox, a lion, and an eagle. Since early Christianity these were thought to represent the 4 Evangelists. Opinion however differed on which creature was which Evangelist. Eventually St. Jeromes' choices became the standard: Matthew was the "winged human" as his Gospel begins with the ancestry of Christ --- his human side, Mark was the "winged lion" as his Gospel begins with a quote from Isaiah about the "voice of one crying in the wilderness" --- this sounds like the roar of a lion, Luke was the "winged ox" since in the Old Testament oxen were used for sacrifice --- Luke's Gospel begins with the sacrifice of Zacharias in the Temple, John the Evangelist was the "winged eagle" as his Gospel emphasizes Christ's divinity --- it soars to heaven like an eagle.

Height: 11' 11"

Width: 11' 11"

Browning Compass Window
Browning Compass Window
Ship of the Church
Ship of the Church
North-Matthew
North-Matthew
South-Mark
South-Mark
West-Luke
West-Luke
East-John
East-John
Browning Compass Window tracery
Browning Compass Window tracery

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All images in the Index are either born-digital photographs of windows or buildings or are scans of slides, prints, or other published sources. These images have been provided by volunteers and the quality of the material varies widely.

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