FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Curtis Prather
ALEXANDRIA, VA – Last night, Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) welcomed to campus the Most Rev. Michael Curry, the 27th Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, where he presided over the evening Eucharist service and dedication of three new stained-glass windows in Immanuel Chapel.
"It's good to be here!" said Bishop Curry, who also presented at a special lecture in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Center for Anglican Communion Studies. later in the evening. "I had the opportunity to read Dean Markham's sermon
about this Chrisoform church, shaped in the image of Jesus Christ, and these remarkable Trinitarian windows - and now, actually seeing them, I can actually see the incarnation."
Designed by artist Brian Clarke, the three windows, feature symbols central to the Episcopal faith: a dove, oak leaves, and the parable of the sower stained-glass window in Canterbury Cathedral, the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion.
"They are spectacular," said the Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D. "The dove, almost moving at high speed, hovers over the baptismal font on the west wing; the oak leaves, representing the Father, the genesis of all that is, sits dignified in the north transept; and the parable of the sower from Canterbury Cathedral as it is refracted by the light onto the ground of the Cathedral represents the power of the Incarnation mediated to us through Canterbury to the Episcopal Church in the United States."
London-based artist, Brian Clarke, is a leading stained-glass artist, with a practice that extends to painting, sculpture, and mosaics. Taking the art of stained-glass out of churches and putting it everywhere, in office buildings, shopping malls, and conference centers, Clarke collaborates with many of the world’s most prominent architects to create large-scale glass installations for buildings worldwide.
“I’m thrilled that the Seminary was able to commission three of the proposed series of stained glass panels by the remarkable English artist Brian Clarke,” said Robert A.M. Stern
, of Robert A.M. Stern Architects, who designed the Seminary's Chapel. "They glow with life and more than complement our Immanuel Chapel.”
Clarke has been featured in two BBC documentaries, and his stained-glass works and paintings have been the subject of exhibitions at international museums including the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, Netherlands; Sezon Museum of Art, Tokyo, Japan; Munich Stadtmuseum, Germany; the Centre International de Vitrail, Chartres, France; the Pyramid of Peace in Kazakhstan; the Pfizer building in Manhattan; and now VTS.
Founded in 1823 as a beacon of hope in a country new and finding its way, Virginia Theological Seminary is the flagship Seminary of the Episcopal Church. One of our first benefactors was Francis Scott Key whose poem provides the text for our national anthem. In the 194 years since being established, VTS has led the way in forming leaders of the Episcopal Church, including: the Most Rev. John E. Hines (VTS 1933, D.D. 1946), former presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church; the Rt. Rev. John T. Walker (VTS 1954, D.D. 1978), the first African-American bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington; and theologian, author and lay preacher Ms. Verna J. Dozier (VTS D.D. 1978). Serving the worldwide Anglican Communion, Virginia Theological Seminary educates approximately 25% of those being ordained who received residential theological education. Visit us online at www.vts.edu.