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The Raising of Lazarus

The Raising of Lazarus is a pictorial and symbolic stained glass window composed of three panels depicting the miracle of Christ resurrecting Lazarus from the dead. The center panel features Christ looking upward toward heaven and Lazarus stepping forth from the tomb and emerging from darkness. The Holy Spirit, located in the right panel, is the heavenly dove radiating light onto Christ, and through Christ the light surrounds Lazarus. Distraught over their brother’s death, Mary, holding onto Christ’s leg appeals to him, while Martha comforts her and along with three approaching mourners witness Lazarus’ resurrection. In the background, the Eastern Gate and a portion of the second temple are visible. The panel on the left features two men with the boulder that sealed the opening of the tomb. These men with one kneeling observe the miracle of Christ resurrecting Lazarus. The four clear faceted jewels represent the four days that Lazarus was dead, and the eight lilies, two in the left panel and six in the center panel, signify the Easter period and the forthcoming resurrection of Christ.

Combined, the stained glass totals approximately 38 sq. ft. It is made up of approximately 310 pieces of glass and four faceted clear jewels. Each piece of glass features traditional hand-painting techniques that date back to the 12th century. These techniques use vitreous pigments and silver stains that are kiln fired for permanency onto glass to create various color values, tones, and textures or patterns. Christ’s nimbus is an example of a texture and pattern created through silver stain, which upon kiln firing turns a golden color.

Glass used in the Raising of Lazarus consists primarily of German New Antique glass manufactured by DESAG, Germany and Cathedral Glass by U.S. makers such as Kokomo Opalescent Glass Company, Indiana est.1888, and the Wissmach Glass Company, W. Virginia est. 1904. German New Antique glass is machine drawn and features striations that mimic antique hand-blown glass. This glass is used in the sky and background swirl.  Glass used for the pink and orange lilies are examples of antique hand-blown glass imported from France and Poland. Christ’s clothing, the tomb opening, the boulder, and tree branches consist of Cathedral Glass from Kokomo, and Lazarus’ shroud consists of Cathedral Glass from Wissmach.

Perimeter came is 3/4″ wide with internal came consisting of 5/8″, 3/8″, 1/4″ and 3/16”. The lead came throughout all of the stained glass windows are functional and aesthetic.  The solder is Canfield 60/40 and putty is our Studio’s secret formula. The stained glass is reinforced with 1/2″ by 1/8″ steel rebar bent and soldered to each panel.

The overall aesthetic association between Raising of Lazarus and the other stained glass windows are maintained through the background swirls and color selection. Aesthetic association is also carried over through compatible painting techniques, in addition to subtle distinctions that are included in each window to differentiate them and create one-of-a-kind stained glass art.

The Raising of Lazarus, installed September 18, 2015, is Dedicated to Jesus from the Members of Living Word Evangelical Lutheran Church.

We would like to acknowledge and express a sincere thank you to the members of the church and the stained glass committee.


Brian Canfield & Nicole Purvis