Parish is proud of Storridge church’s east window. More arresting
than some Victorian stained glass, it is full of biblical symbolism.
Frederick Preedy, the Worcestershire architect who designed the
church, also designed this 3-light window. Both window and church
are among his very best.
UNUSUALLY WIDE CENTRE LIGHT
depicts Christ crucified, but his arms appear outstretched as if
welcoming and embracing. His face was described by a former rector
as lovely – sad but not perplexed, because he knows what he is
doing, and how it will lead to salvation for mankind. Unusually, he
has a nail in each foot, both nailing the head of the serpent which
led Eve to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden (Genesis
3:15). The cross itself is a tree of life from which hang twelve
fruits. This is a reference to Revelation 22:2: "The tree of
life... yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree
were for the healing of the nations."
the foot of the cross are 5 figures. Saint John the Evangelist,
the patron saint of Storridge Church, sits holding a book - the Gospel that he wrote.
The female figure with the green halo is Saint Mary Magdalene, above
whom stands Saint Paul. In his right hand is the legend (in
Latin, like all the inscriptions in the window) which translates:
"Christ our Passover is Sacrificed for us".
The point of his sword is pinning down the serpent’s tail, as
if to shield us from its lashings as the serpent dies.
St Paul is a Roman soldier. Some people believe that the centurion
in charge of the crucifixion was converted and became a great
Christian. Preedy links him with Cornelius, a centurion whose story
is in Acts 10. Opposite Mary Magdalene is the prophet Isaiah (or
possibly the Ethiopian in Acts 8), holding the legend of Isaiah’s
prophecy: "He was led as a sheep to the slaughter".
the central scene, in Latin, is written "I saw the tree of
life bearing twelve fruits" beneath which is
written the promise of Christ, "Et ego si exaltatus fuero a
terra omnia traham ad me ipsum" in English (John 12:32),
"and I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all
mankind unto me". It is symbolised during Holy Communion by
the elevation of the consecrated bread and wine. The portrayal of
his arms against the cross also suggests this drawing in of men and
women to him.
shows Christ’s grieving mother, Saint Mary, while THE
RIGHT SIDE-LIGHT depicts Saint John the Evangelist. Both
are under canopies above which are angels playing harps. At the
bottom of these side-lights, in Latin, is written "Jesu to
you be the glory" [left side] "who was born of a
virgin" [right side].
TWO ROUNDELS above
Saint Mary and Saint John show the word "Alleluia"
and angels wafting incense – an indication of mid-19th century
interest in earlier religious practices.
TOP ROUNDEL represents Christ himself, sometimes called the Lamb
of God. The sacrificial lamb stands on an altar placed on the
holy mount from which flow four rivers symbolising the four