THE WINDOW IN THE FOYER boasts the words M.E. Church South A.D. 1903. The Methodist Episcopal Church split in two because of the issue of slavery at the Convention in Louisville, KY, 1845. The division came as Bishop James O. Andrew, Georgia resident and a former member of the South Carolina Annual Conference, inherited slaves from his wife’s late husband. Methodist leaders were offended that a general superintendent of the church would own slaves. The initial discussion began at the annual conference in New York City in 1844, the longest general conference ever recorded. The split lasted until in 1939 the two were reunited to form The Methodist Church. Fourth Avenue UMC is the modern day church of the moved and merged Fourth Street Methodist Episcopal Church (1816) and Louisville Methodist Society (1806) that held the 1845 convention. The original 1816 building is currently part of the Kentucky International Convention Center. Pray for unity for The United Methodist Church.
THE WINDOW IN FELLOWSHIP HALL boasts the words Children’s M.E. Aid Society. The Children’s Aid Society was founded in 1853 by Methodist minister Charles Loring Brace (1826 – 1890). The Children’s Aid Society was nonsectarian and served children in New York City who were flooding the streets after the 1840s Irish Potato Famine that brought many to our shores. Brace served in New York’s notorious Five Points district at a Methodist Mission for two years before beginning the Children’s Aid Society. Pray for the children in your community, in your state, and in the world.
THE WINDOWS IN THE PULPIT boast two kinds of lilies. The lily is considered a symbol of the resurrection. Lilies are a symbol of the purity and innocence of Christ and the hope of eternal life. Pray for our leaders to be pure in heart.
THE WINDOWS IN THE SANCTUARY boast a number of different symbols that inspire reflection and prayer.
- A dove is the symbol of the Holy Spirit and used especially in representations of our Lord’s Baptism and Pentecost. It also symbolizes the release of the soul in death, and is used to recall Noah’s dove, a harbinger of hope. Pray for peace in our community, nation, and around the world.
- The Holy Grail was the cup used by Jesus at the Last Supper. The legend of the Holy Grail dates back to the twelfth century. Pray for Christian unity of all the Saints.
- Wesley himself was a man of “one book.” The one book is shown in three different designs representing the Bible or Codex – God’s Word. Pray for a hunger to read, meditate, study, and teach on God’s Word.
- The ivy is an evergreen plant symbolizing eternal life as it clings tightly to the object it is connected to. The ivy also represents fidelity. Pray that we might remain faithful all the days of our lives never wavering in our loyalty to Christ Jesus.
- Christian use of the anchor is noted in Hebrews 6:19, “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure (NIV).” Pray for the sharing of our hope of eternal life through Jesus Christ.
- The cross and crown represent the crown of reward awaiting in heaven that believers will receive after they take up their cross and following the way of discipleship with its suffering and trials on earth. Pray for those who grieve the loss of loved ones.
- The sheaf of wheat represents the first fruit of the harvest or the celebration of Pentecost. Pray for the harvest of souls, workers in the fields, and God’s Kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven.
You can read more on the Methodist Episcopal Church at: http://blogs.wofford.edu/from_the_archives/2013/01/30/how-the-methodist-church-split-in-the-1840s/ ::: http://www.gcah.org/research/travelers-guide/site-of-the-organization-of-the-methodist-episcopal-church-south.
You can read more on the Children’s Aid Society at: http://ocp.hul.harvard.edu/immigration/cas.html