Belin Chapel Stained Glass

To enrich the aesthetic experience for all celebrations in the Belin Chapel, HCU has fitted stained glass in the chancel windows immediately behind the chapel’s distinctive cross. This enhancement to the Belin Chapel was made possible through the generous support of HCU friends Mary Ann and Bruce Belin and the Hamill Foundation. The chancel windows were designed by the renowned artists of Willet Hauser Architectural Glass, which brought to the project more than a century of experience on prominent domestic and international stained glass projects, including the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., and St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston.

The phenomenon of light, and its role in the opening lines to the Book of Genesis, served as the inspiration for the design of the Belin Chapel chancel windows. Willet Hauser’s Charlie Lawrence chose an abstract design that contains no immediate reference to the natural world. Instead, Lawrence focused on light as an artistic medium and strove for a harmonious arrangement of shapes, color, and line. The design allows the colors to actively pulsate when light streams through the window, reminding celebrants in the chapel that from light comes all life, beauty, and art.

When paired with the large wooden cross at the altar, the grouping of yellow, orange, and red glass in the center also suggests the ethereal light surrounding figures of divinity and, in this case, Christ after his Resurrection. As the fiery glass explodes outward from the empty cross, its radiance signifies Christ’s supreme power and victory over death.

The abstract aesthetic of the design of the Belin Chapel chancel windows opens it up to a countless array of interpretation, personal to each member of the HCU family or the community who enters the chapel. The windows will serve as a timeless vehicle for spiritual reflection and a tangible representation of HCU’s commitment to higher education with a truly Christian distinctive.