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Stained glass windows tour part of July 4 celebration in Springs: United Methodist Church celebrates centennial

Posted: Monday, Jul 1st, 2013

The stained glass windows of the United Methodist Church in Wessington Springs will be on tour as part of the church’s 100 year celebration on the 4th of July. In this stained glass window, Jesus is pictured as the Shepard with the lost lamb in one arm and the shepherd’s crook in the other hand. It depicts the Lord as the one who saves and rescues those who are lost. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED

The Wessington Springs United Methodist Church will be celebrating 100 years by opening its doors and inviting the public to tour its stained glass windows on July 4th from 10 a.m. to noon.

Christian numbers and symbols found within the church, which is on the National Register of Historic Buildings, will also be revealed.

Built for $40,000, the church building, located at 110 Main Street West, was dedicated on Dec. 21, 1913. In the early 1900s, that was a sizable amount of money for a church, especially since it was paid for debt free.

From 1914-1918 it hosted the public library. In addition to the religious meaning associated with each window, there will also be information revealed about Christian numbers and symbols found within the historic building, since it is such an intriguing part of the study of the architecture of the United Methodist Church.

In Renaissance times a large percentage of people were illiterate, but found they could remember sermons and scripture lessons easier if associated with pictures, numbers and symbols.

The 15th Century Renaissance Gothic Church was placed on the National Register of Historic Buildings in 1999.

Kim Burg, church member and Board Trustee who is organizing this event, said, “I’ve uncovered some very interesting information when putting this event together and I think the public will find the tours very interesting — from some traditional symbols of trumpets and lilies, to the more unique symbols of bee hives. I used some past research from church members Tom Shonley and Beverly Salmen, as well as my own.”

Refreshments will be served at the end of the tours. Freewill donations will be taken for the church fund. For more information contact Kim Burg in the evenings at 539-9380 or days at the Wessington Springs Area Development Corporation Office at 539-1929.

For the complete article see the 06-30-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 06-30-2013 paper.

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