Trinity’s Stained Glass Windows
The first of the many beautiful stained-glass windows to be installed at Trinity were the three small windows in the narthex, dedicated March 5, 1944. The center window has a symbol of the Holy Trinity – an equilateral triangle in a circle – reminding one that this church is dedicated to the Triune God and bears the name, Trinity.
The “Rose Window,” located high above the altar, was dedicated on May 21, 1944. It depicts the crucifixion of Christ, with the two traditional figures at the foot of the cross – Mary, the mother of our Lord, and St. John, the beloved disciple. Since the altar and everything above it should remind worshippers of our Savior’s sacrifice on the cross for our redemption, this is the most fitting subject for a window of this kind. The inscription also brings out the fact of our redemption through Christ. It consists of the first letters (IXOYC) of the sentence in the Greek language, Jesous Christos Theou Hios Soter, meaning “Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior.” In the details of the window we see symbols of the Blessed Sacrament, the ‘Blood of Christ which cleanseth us from all sins’.
The windows installed on either side of the chancel, depict the Sacrament of Holy Communion and the Sacrament of Holy Baptism. These were dedicated on October 8, 1944.
On June 10, 1945, the four windows located on the south side of the nave were dedicated at the twentieth anniversary celebration with an organ concert by Ann Hesselmeyer followed by Vespers. The windows on the north side were not installed until the church building was moved to its present location. They were dedicated on May 28, 1961. All the stained glass windows in the nave were laid out by Pastor Lang and designed and built by Carl Hunecke. An interesting window that not many people notice is the “Dream Window” located behind the organ in the balcony. Looking toward the future, it depicts a rocket ship. The shape can be observed from outside the church building.
The last stained-glass windows to be installed at Trinity are the windows in the doors between the narthex and the nave. These were designed and built by the Youth Group in the early 1970’s.
Repair of the windows after the fire included their being removed, cleaned and completely re-leaded. Two windows were destroyed – the sacristy window and the one chancel window – and were rebuilt by European Art Glass. The chancel window design was changed to make the Baptismal font reflect our current font’s design.
About stained-glass windows, Pastor Lang said in a 1944 bulletin, “…one can get an idea of how the glory of the vibration of light, as it plays through various colors of glass, alive and uplifting, can help to create an atmosphere of worship in a church.”
Trinity’s Hook and Hastings pipe organ, Opus 1898, is a 2 manual and pedal, 8 rank, mechanical action instrument. Before coming to Trinity it had a rather interesting past. It is said that it came from Boston to Catholic convent and school in San Francisco in 1901 on a clipper ship and was used by the sisters until the earthquake and fire of 1906. The organ survived but was put in storage and then reinstalled in a chapel loft when the convent moved. When the convent moved again, in 1940, to the famous Flood Mansion, it did not fit and had to be sold. It was bought by Trinity for $800 in 1944 from the Schoenstein Organ Company where it had been set up in the factory’s studio.
The organ boasts mechanical action (electricity is used only for the air supply) which is the simplest, most dependable and expressive action possible in an organ. Two changes are thought tohave been made since 1901: The wind pressure was raised by the addition of lead weights and a new pedal board of 30 notes was added with only 27 of the notes usable. After the fire, the organ was completely cleaned and restored, and a new air pump motor was installed.
Hook and Hastings are known for their fine craftsmanship, mellow tone, and smooth voicing. Trinity has certainly played a part in preserving a chapter in the history of American organ building.