St. Ignatius of Loyola Parish (Boston College)/Nave windows

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The nine stained glass windows in the nave of St. Ignatius Church depict key events in the life of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus and in the life of the Jesuit order in their first 125 years. The four windows on the right (north) side are from events from 1521 to 1534. The five windows on the left (south) side are from 1540 (Papal approval) to about 1646.


More Info on North Nave windows

  • Window 1 (Pampeluna, 1521): St. Ignatius' spiritual journey began after he was wounded on May 20, 1521 at the Battle of Pampeluna. Even though the castle fell, the French troops did not keep him captive, and he went home to his father's castle as an invalid. "Struck by a cannon ball in the foot, the wounded Ignatius is shown being carried from the field by fellow soldiers. The battle of Pampeluna marked the turning point in Ignatius' life because it was during the long convalescence from his wound that the Saint resolved to forego his worldly ambitions and to give himself wholly to the service of God." (from The Art and Architecture of St. Ignatius Church)
  • Window 2 (Manresa, 1522): During his period of recuperation, St. Ignatius read a number of religious texts on the life of Jesus and the saints. He became fired with an ambition to lead a life of self-denying labor and to emulate the heroic deeds of Francis of Assisi and other great monastic leaders. Following his recovery he visited the Benedictine monastery of Montserrat, where he hung his military accouterments before an image of the Virgin. He then went and spent several months in a cave near the town of Manresa, the theme of the next window.
  • Window 3 (Paris, 1530): St. Ignatius went to study at the University of Paris. In this window he is shown aking Francis Xavier the question that Jesus had asked: "What does it profit a man if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his own soul?" (Matthew 16:26). Francis Xavier became one of Ignatius' first companions and is primarily known for his missionary work in India.
  • Window 4 (First Vows, 1534): The Society of Jesus had its birth in a chapel in Montmarte on August 15, 1534. This window shows St. Ignatius and his first companions, Francis Xavier, James Laynez, Alphonso Salmeron, Nicolas Bobadilla, and Simon Rodriguez receiving Communion from Peter Fabre, the only initial companion of St. Ignatius who was an ordained priest.

More Info on South Nave windows

  • Window 5 (Papal Approval, 1540): St. Ignaius traveled to Rome and sought papal approval for his religous order. This window shows St. Ignatius before Pope Paul III and his approval of the Society of Jesus.
  • Window 6 (Immaculate Conception): The theme of this window is The Immaculate Conception, which was approved as a dogma of the Catholic Church in 1854. Mary is shown in the center with St. Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) on the left and St. Peter Canisius (1521-1597) on the right. Both were Jesuits and theologians named as Doctors of the Church and both wrote about The Immaculate Conception of Mary during their lifetimes.
  • Window 7 (Sacred Heart of Jesus): The theme of this window is The Sacred Heart of Jesus. Jesus is shown in the center, with St. Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647–1690) on the left and St. Claude de la Colombière (1641-1682) on the right. St. Margaret Mary was a French nun is known for her devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Father Colombière was a Jesuit priest, who was her confessor and encouraged her devotion.
  • Window 8 (Jesuit "Boy Saints"): The theme of this window is three Jesuits who died in their youth and were later canonized as saints. From left to right they are St. Aloysius Gonzaga (1568-1591), St. Stanislaus Kostka (1550-1568), and St. John Berchmans (1599-1621).
  • Window 9 (North American Martyrs): The theme of this window is the North American Martyrs, eight French Jesuits who ministered to native Americans in upstate New York and southern Ontario. They were killed between 1642 and 1649 and canonized as saints in 1930. This window shows St. Isaac Jogues carving the name of Jesus on the tree with St. Kateri Tekakwitha, the 'Lily of the Mohawks,' shown on the right. She was canonized in 2012.

The stained glass windows in the church made by Edward W. Heimer & Company of Paterson, New Jersey and were installed in the church in 1949.