The Altar Window
The Altar Window honors Saint Clement of Rome who was consecrated Bishop of Rome by the Apostle Saint Peter.
Saint Clement is also known as Pope Clements I. Saint Clement’s papacy lasted from 88-99 AD, when he was jailed by Emperor Trajan where it is said that he ministered to other inmates until the Emperor martyred him by tying a ship’s anchor around him and throwing him into the Black Sea. St. Clement is said to be the Patron Saint of Mariners.
The Christian symbolism of the window can be discerned by the red circle surrounding all other elements and representing the eternity of God, while its red color represents the blood of Christ. Immediately towards the center, there are four curved white triangles representing four white doves, which, in turn, represent The Holy Spirit. The four red semicircles configured in the form of a cross represent the cross at Calvary and their red coloration is repetitive of the blood shed at Calvary by our Lord.
Inside the four semicircles, there are four light blue rectangle-like elements representing the heavens and the seas. The white lilies represent the renewal symbolic of Easter – rebirth. The two darker blue elements on the side of each lily and the purple rectangle elements represent butterfly wings which, in turn, represent new life or resurrection.
The eight golden rays represent the light of Christ. There are also four little red fish-like formations representing the Greek word IXOYE acronym which early Christians used to identify each other as being followers of “Jesus Christ God’s Son Savior” and which, in turn, spells FISH in Greek – a symbol representing Christ and/or Christianity throughout the ages.
The central circle has the same significance as the outer one. Inside it, there is an anchor-cross representing both Christian life and the implement with which Saint Clement was martyred- the anchor. The cross hovers between the ocean and heaven representing both St. Clement’s descent and ascent from the ocean, since death has no hold on the Christian believer. The white clouds are symbolic of Heaven. The red stole on the cross symbolizes ordination and martyrdom.
The names of several parishioners who assisted in the building of the window are engraved on the frame of the window, but they are not visible from the outside – as is the name of The Rt. Rev. Bishop Allen, Bishop of the Diocese of Atlanta, who dedicated the window in January 1999.
The window was donated by Mr. and Mrs. Max (Carol) Thomas and by The Rev. Lucy A. and Mr. Inocencio (Ino) Martinez.