January 24, 2011
Stained-glass artist Deborah Coombs works on a window for a chapel in Nashville, Tenn.

CNS photo | Cori Fugere Urban

Stained-glass artist Deborah Coombs works on a window for a chapel in Nashville, Tenn.

Some people have PowerPoint presentations to illustrate their topics; Msgr. Richard Lavalley has windows.

The pastor of St. Francis Xavier Church in Winooski, Vt., says he uses the dozen and a half stained-glass windows in the church to illustrate his homilies.

Stained glass, as an art form, reached its height in the Middle Ages when it became a major pictorial form and was used to illustrate the narratives of the Bible for a mostly illiterate population.

And even though stained-glass windows are not necessary to educate literate and technologically savvy Catholics today, they still continue to be created to foster the faith, to inspire and to comfort.

Stained-glass artist Deborah Coombs has created four stained-glass windows for the chapel at St. Henry Church in Nashville, Tenn. Each depicts one of the mysteries of the rosary.

"Even if no one told you what the windows are about, you should feel the lifting of your spirits as you look from that window (Crucifixion) to that window (Resurrection)," she said, gesturing to her drawings for the windows.