Featured Windows, October 1998
First (Park) Congregationl Church, Grand Rapids, MI
Building: First (Park) Congregational Church
City: Grand Rapids
The four-lancet "Angels of Praise Window" rises high above the west gallery overlooking the sanctuary of First (Park) Congregational Church. Created by the New York studios of Louis C. Tiffany, the fourteen by twenty-eight foot window is dominated by two large angels praising victory over death against a background suggesting a heavenly city of gold. An inscription reads "In loving service we praise God, The United Workers of Park Church, 1927," followed by the names of the women who had raised funds for the window, which features the opalescent glass, multiple plating, variegated coloring and textural effects characteristic of Tiffany windows.
Built in 1868, the Gothic Revival church was remodeled in 1929 by noted church architect Ralph Adams Cram. In August of 1988 a fire set by arson caused extensive damage to the sanctuary, including all of its windows which suffered heavy smoke damage and cracking. After their removal and restoration by Arthur Femenella and the staff of the Association of Restoration Specialists Studios in New Jersey, the windows were reinstalled in time for the rededication of the fully restored sanctuary in September of 1989.
First (Park) Congregational Church of Grand Rapids was registered in the Michigan Stained Glass Census by Jacqueline Johnson of Grand Rapids.
Text by Betty MacDowell, Michigan Stained Glass Census, October , 1998.