St. John's Episcopal Church, Butte, Montana
Below are descriptions of the stained glass windows in St. John’s Episcopal Church with their inscriptions. Some of the wording and capitalization is a little unusual, in order to accurately record what is on the stained glass windows themselves. Also, some the windows say ‘J&R Lamb Studios’ and other windows say ‘The J&R Lamb Studios’ and so that is reflected in the descriptions.
Most of the stained glass in the church was manufactured by The J&R Lamb Studios of New York and New Jersey. It includes mining and patriotic motifs in addition to traditional religious imagery. For the visitor wishing to walk through the church, we suggest a clockwise path beginning at the main entrance.
1. In the entryway is a window depicting our original patron saint, St. John, The Beloved Disciple. The inscription reads “The love of God be with you all.” This stained glass window was given to the Glory of God, and in loving memory of Richard Orvis Evans, 1907-1949. (J & R Lamb Studios)
2. As you enter the church, the large window on the east end (to your left) is approximately 10 ft. wide and 20 ft. high, and also depicts our original patron, St. John. Because of its size, the artist J. R. Lamb was able to work the design into the glass. There is no paint used except in the faces, hands and feet of the different figures. All other images such as the clothing, landscape, sky, etc., were produced by different thicknesses and different layers of the mosaic glass. Every different shade of color and shape is a separate and distinctive piece of glass. The scene is from the Book of Revelations. An angel of the Lord is giving revelations to St. John of things which will come to pass. The stained glass window required more than a year of constant work. The window was donated by W. A. Clark, Jr., To the Glory of God, and in loving memory of his wife, Mabel Foster Clark, born February 13, 1881 and died January 1, 1903. It was dedicated on November 5, 1905.
3. Continuing ahead and walking clockwise starting on the Gospel side, the first window depicts the nativity. “The WORD was made flesh and dwelt among us.” Given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Jeannette Emerson Gillie, 1859-1927, a Gift of Jeannette Gillie Wallace and Marjorie Gillie Vann. (J & R Lamb Studios)
4. The second window on the Gospel side is the Crucifixion, with John and Mary at the foot of the cross. “If I Be Lifted Up I Will Draw All Men Unto Me.” Today, this window symbolizes “A New Beginning at the Foot of the Cross” as St. Mary’s and St. John’s merged to better serve Jesus. To the Glory of GOD and in loving memory of Alice J. German, 1873-1946. (The J & R Lamb Studios)
5. The third window on the Gospel side is the risen Christ with sleeping soldiers, “Behold I Am Alive for Evermore.” Given to the Glory of GOD and in beloved memory of Kathleen Bird Parkin, 1910 – 1944. (The J & R Lamb Studios)
6. The fourth window on the Gospel side, near the lectern, depicts Christ the King. “Behold I Make All Things New.” Given to the Glory of God and in beloved memory of William A. Youlden, 1912 – 1950. (The J & R Lamb Studios)
7. The window behind the altar represents the Savior as a sacrificial lamb, and the Shepherd gently carrying His lambs to the fold for safety. It was erected by W. A. and Kate L. Clark in memory of their little daughter, Jessie, who died in Deer Lodge on April 17, 1878 at the age of two years, eleven months, six days. The inscription reads “Then All My Song Shall Be, Nearer My God To Thee.” Senator Clark commissioned the Italian artist Bertini, well known for his work in the Cathedral at Milan, to prepare this window. After the fire in 1918, this window was not restored until 1931. William A. Clark, Jr. and Jessie’ twin sister Catherine paid for the restoration, which was executed by descendant Pompeo Bertini. This is one of the few surviving Bertini windows, because the Cathedral of Milan was destroyed during WWII. The red color in the glass is from the infusion of gold.
8. The first window on the Epistle side was given to the Glory of God and in honored memory of Francis Andrew Thomson, 1879-1951; Churchman, Educator, Mining Engineer, President of Montana School of Mines from 1928-1951. There is a theme of light in various forms: a lantern at the top and stars near the top. Part of the way down, there is a rising sun on the left, and the Bible (The Word of God) is on the right. Even further down is an inscription that reads “God is My Light” opposite another lamp. Near the bottom of the window is a second inscription “Happy is the Man That Findeth Wisdom.” Just above those words in the left corner is a miner’s hardhat with a carbide lamp. In the middle is a miner with his pick, and a pick and shovel is on the right. Note the Montana School of Mines De Re Metallic near the bottom. (J & R Lamb Studios)
9. The next image is “Christ Beside the Sea of Galilee.” This window was donated by the W. A. Clark family to the Glory of God and in loving memory of John Noyes, born March 21, 1829, died March 21, 1902.
10. The third Epistle-side window pays tribute to the Armed Services and has the inscription “They shall mount up with wings as eagles.” The insignia of three branches of the military, Army, Navy, and Marines, are reproduced, each with an eagle, stars and stripes. The Army Air Forces had not yet become the Air Force, which was established in 1947. One of the insignia has “E Pluribus Unum” as part of its design. Below a flock of seagulls and a ship, and surrounded by fishes, is another inscription that reads “The last full measure of Devotion.” This window was given To the Glory of GOD and in Honored Memory of Thomas Ashworth, Jr., son of the Rector of this Parish, a Lieutenant and an Aviator in the United States Navy, who lost his life at sea in the line of duty on October 21, 1941. (The J & R Lamb Studios)
11. The last window on the Epistle side has three angels, Faith, Love and Hope, and the inscription “I Will Lift Up Mine Eyes Unto the Hills.” Given To the Glory of God and in loving memory of Gertrude Nichols, a soldier of Christ, promoted to the life of perfect service on December 17, 1939. (The J & R Lamb Studios)
This stained glass window depicts Mary and John, our two patron saints, standing at the foot of the cross, looking up at Christ crucified. Today, this window symbolizes “A New Beginning at the Foot of the Cross” because of the renewed vigor after St. Mary’s Fellowship and St. John’s Parish merged to better serve Jesus. On June 24, 2014, the name St. John’s Episcopal Church was restored, and the chapel was named The Chapel of St. Mary, in honor of the important role that St. Mary played in the history of today’s church.