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Window of the Month
Our Lady of Grace, Dearborn Heights, Michigan

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Building Name: Holy Name Church

Studio Name: Detroit Stained Glass Works, The

City: Birmingham

Date of Window: 1955

Subject/Title of Window: Marian Titles #3

Brief Description of Subject: This is the third of three windows located in the area around the side door. With the addition of the annex, these windows no longer receive direct sunlight, they do however receive some indirect sunlight from the hall windows. These windows use symbols to illuminate titles of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. Most of them are taken from the Litany of Loreto that was approved by the Pope in 1587. Through the years a few titles have been added.
Top to Bottom:
QUEEN CONCEIVED WITHOUT ORIGINAL SIN. Crown with stars: The crown is a symbol for a queen. Stars as an attribute for the Immaculate Conception has its origins in the 17th Century. In 1649, Jesuit artist Francesco Pacheco authored a book titled "Art of Painting." In it, he gave guidance on how the Immaculate Conception should be painted ---. basically like the woman in Revelation 12:1 which includes stars. The impetus for the inclusion in the Litany has much to do with the 1830 appearance of the Virgin Mary to St. Catherine Labaure. Mary wanted a medal struck with her image and the words "O Mary conceived without sin." This medal, "The Miraculous Medal of Our Lady," became very popular around the world, and in 1854, Pope Pius IX declared the Immaculate Conception Dogma. In 1883, Pope Leo XIII added "Queen Conceived Without Original Sin" to the Litany.
The stars could also be interpreted as symbolizing heaven. This opens the possibility of other titles in the Litany that start with "Queen," for example, Queen of Angels.
MYSTICAL ROSE. A thornless rose branch. The word mystical means a quality that is hard to explain. The title for the Virgin Mary as "Mystical Rose" has much to do with the writings of St. Ambrose on the Immaculate Conception as explained in the 2020 article by Laura S. Lieber, professor of Religious Studies at Duke University:
"According to Ambrose of Milan, the Church Father who lived in the 4th Century ... roses first grew in the Garden of Eden, and those first roses were entirely without thorns. Only after Adam and Eve disobeyed God and were expelled from the Garden did these blossoms acquire their prickly defenses [Genesis 3:17 - 18}. Rose blossoms, with their beauty and aroma, serve as enduring reminders of Paradise, even as roses' thorns remind us that Paradise has been lost. According to St. Ambrose, the Virgin Mary is the "rose without thorns": born free of Original Sin, she was free of the thorns --- the sins --- that had pricked humankind since Eve ate from the apple."
MORNING STAR. A star. St. John Paul II in his Redemtoris Mater writes on the Virgin Mary as the Morning Star:
"The Church has constantly been aware that Mary appeared on the horizon of salvation history before Christ ... Therefore, if to ancient historical expectation of the Savior we compare these years which are bringing us closer to the end of the second Millennium after Christ to the beginning of the third, it becomes fully comprehensible that in this period we wish to turn in a special way to her, the one who in the "night" of the Advent expectation began to shine like a true "Morning Star" (Stella Matutina). For just as the star, together with the "dawn," precedes the rising of the sun, so Mary from the Immaculate Conception preceded the coming of the Savior, the rising of the "Sun of Justice" in the history of the human race."
VESSEL OF HONOR. Trophy cup with lid. A trophy is a vessel that honors the victor. The words "vessel of honor" appear in 2 Timothy 2:21 (Douay-Rheims), "A vessel unto honor, sanctified and profitable to the Lord." The Blessed Virgin is honored as the vessel through which God was made flesh.

This window was designed by Margaret Bouchez Cavanaugh when she worked at the Detroit Stained Glass Works.

Height: 96"

Width: 21"

Marian Titles #3
Marian Titles #3

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