Featured Windows, November 1999
East Congregational Church Window
Building: East Congregational Church UCC
City: Grand Rapids
The "Pilgrim Father and Mother Window" at East Congregational Church symbolizes the spiritual ancestry of Congregational churches in America. In the left panel is the Pilgrim Father, carrying a Bible and musket. The Pilgrim Mother stands in the right panel. Their figures, clad in sober gray and white Pilgrim attire, are framed by glowing yellow glass. The window was created in 1955 by the Chartres Glassmakers Guild, curators of the stained glass windows at Chartres Cathedral in France. It was made under the direction of Master glassmaker Francois Lorin and his assistant, Jean Claude Riqueur. Two companion windows depict the sailing ship, the "Mayflower," which brought the Pilgrims from England in 1620, the Pilgrims in Holland, signing the "Mayflower Compact" in the captain's cabin, landing in the New World, the Pilgrim Meeting House, the Pilgrims going to church and accepting gifts of turkeys from the Indians for the first Thanksgiving. To view another window with a Thanksgiving theme, visit the Window of the Month for November 1998.
Established in 1894, East Congregational Church constructed a new educational building and auditorium in 1929, followed in 1931 by a chapel designed by Cram and Ferguson of Boston. The present Gothic style sanctuary, constructed by Barkwell Building Company, was erected in 1955.
East Congregational Church of Grand Rapids was registered in the Michigan Stained Glass Census by Carol McNally of Grand Rapids.
Text by Betty MacDowell, Michigan Stained Glass Census, November , 1999.