WILDWOOD | In a desire to bridge the worlds of the visible with the invisible, St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Wildwood recently added windows on the sides of the large crucifix that hangs over the tabernacle. Bishop John Noonan blessed the windows Aug. 14.
Acknowledging the Eucharist is the center of the Catholic Church and the St. Vincent de Paul community, the design committee chose the Eucharist as the starting point for the placement of spaces, sound, and visibility of the building when it was originally constructed. To this end, the windows behind the crucifix, as well as along the upper front of the church, highlight rays of light emanating from the cross and tabernacle.
Father John McCracken, parochial vicar, quoted Scripture, “I saw something like the appearance of fire and brilliant light surrounding Him. The appearance of the radiant light resembled that of a rainbow shining in a cloud on a rainy day. This was what the appearance of the form of the glory of the Lord resembled. When I saw all of this, I fell flat on my face. Then I heard a voice speaking… You must speak my words to them.” (Ez 1:27b-28, 2:7)
“I believe these words of the Prophet Ezekiel, describing the vision he experienced and the call he received, reflect the design of the stained-glass windows in the sanctuary,” Father McCracken said. “For us, the source of this radiant light is the presence of the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle. As we pray in silent adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, may we experience, like Ezekiel, the radiating love and grace of God, and hear His call to us to go forth and proclaim His Word.”
He further noted, as the community gathers around the altar to bring forth their offering, “the stained-glass windows serve as a visible reminder of the invisible reality of God’s unconditional love radiating into our lives and the life of the Church through Jesus, the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation. Jesus, our nourishment and strength, who sends us forth to radiate His love and mercy to all people.”
The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds Catholics that the Eucharist is the “source and the summit of the Christian life.” Through this year of Eucharistic revival, Catholics are encouraged to reignite their love for the Eucharist.
Staff report, August 17, 2022