Parable of the Talents in Stained Glass

Discovery: Illuminating Jesus’s parable through a modern take on a medieval art

Beginning this Sunday, Trinity’s Discovery faith formation series will embark on an exploration of the history of stained glass in religious settings, including Trinity’s own stained-glass windows, all in anticipation of the installation later this year of a new stained-glass window overlooking Wall Street.

“Stained glass has always served in churches across the world for faith formation and instruction, particularly in times when people did not have real access to their own copies of the Bible,” said Summerlee Staten, executive director of Trinity’s Faith Formation & Education department. “The history of stained glass in religious settings brings alive the stories and the figures of the Bible that are so much a part of our tradition and history.”

The series will feature teaching by Trinity staff, including Staten and Trinity’s Vicar, the Rev. Michael Bird, as well as parishioner and professor of art history at Rhode Island School of Design Dr. Susan Ward, who will lead a tour of select stained-glass windows in Trinity Church.

“We’re especially excited for the tour on May 8 for the parishioners to physically walk around the church with Susan and look at these treasures,” Staten said. “Hopefully our parishioners will see their own space with new eyes.”

There will also be discussion of the subject of the new window, the Parable of the Talents, in which a master charges three servants with caring for his money while he is away on a journey.

The series schedule is listed below. To register, visit the Discovery series page.

April 24 

Join Dr. Susan Ward, Professor of Art History at Rhode Island School of Design and Trinity parishioner, as she teaches on the history of stained glass in religious settings.

May 1

Dr. Susan Ward discusses the stained glass at our own beloved Trinity Church.

May 8

Join Dr. Susan Ward as she leads an in-person and virtual tour of select stained-glass windows at Trinity Church.

May 15 

Join Summerlee Staten, Executive Director of Faith Formation, for a Bible study on the Parable of the Talents as Trinity celebrates the newest stained-glass window.

May 22 

The Rev. Michael Bird discusses the new stained glass window and how the Parable of the Talents speaks to Trinity’s context specifically.

May 29 

Join Summerlee Staten as she moderates a discussion about renowned stained-glass artist Thomas Denny, the designer of Trinity’s new stained-glass window, as we learn about his artistic process and the meaning of this new work for Trinity’s community and beyond.