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

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Building Name: Our Lady Queen of Apostles Catholic Church

Studio Name: Willet Hauser Architectural Glass

City: Hamtramck

Window Shape: 3 (arched)

Date of Window: 1951

Subject/Title of Window: Baptism of Desire

Brief Description of Subject: This is one of four windows created for the baptistry. This baptistry is located in a private room off the Gospel side aisle and is octagonal in shape, symbolizing Christ's resurrection on the eighth day from his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. When this Church was built, baptisms were not allowed in the interior of the Church. Most baptistries were placed in the vestibule, a few either in a separate building, or like here, in a private room off the interior of the Church. Vatican II changed this prohibition and allows baptisms to take place inside the Church even during Mass. This Church has moved the baptistry from this private room.
There are three types of Baptism in the canon of the Catholic Church. This window illuminates an example of "Baptism of Desire." If you believe in Jesus or are seeking God and love your neighbor as yourself, this is considered a Baptism of Desire. The classic example of this would be Dismas, the good thief.
An example of Baptism by Desire is illuminated in the top two scenes of this window. It is the story of the Ethiopian Eunuch as found in Acts 8:26 - 38. Quotes from the NRSVCE Bible.
An angel had told Philip to go the wilderness road. "Now there was an Ethiopian Eunuch, a court official of the Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, ... He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning home, seated in his chariot, ... reading the prophet Isaiah. Then the Spirit said to Philip, 'Go over to the chariot and join it.' So Philip ran up to it and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, 'Do you understand what you are reading?' He replied, 'How can I, unless someone guides me?' And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him. Now the passage of the scripture that he was reading was this: [Isaiah 53:7 -8]
'Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter,
and like a lamb silent before his shearer,
so he does not open his mouth.
In his humiliation justice was denied him.
Who can describe his generation?
For his life is taken away from the earth.'
The eunuch asked Philip, 'About whom, may I ask you, does the prophet say this is, about himself or someone else?' Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus. As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, 'Look, here is water! What is to prevent me from being baptized?' He commanded the chariot to stop, and both of them, Philip and the eunuch, went down to the water, and Philip baptized him."
The bottom scene features decorative putti. One of them is holding a fish, a symbol for "Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior" --- an anagram formed from the Greek word for "fish."

Inscriptions: Baptism of Desire

Height: 68"

Width: 14"

Baptism of Desire
Baptism of Desire
Baptism of Desire outside
Baptism of Desire outside

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