Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Orb at York Minster

For Gaudete Sunday 2012 (i.e. the third Sunday in Advent), here's something to rejoice about--restoration of stained glass windows to their original glory!

As they restore the East Window of York Minster, they have set up a display explaining the restoration of the window and the original work done centuries ago.

Doesn't really fit aesthetically with the medieval cathedral

When we were there, various windows were on display inside the Orb. Here are a few. First is the Seven Churches mentioned in the first chapter of Revelation. St. John is in the bottom left, being told to write to seven churches by an angel. The image includes all the churches, represented by archbishops in archways.

Seven Churches (click to enlarge)

The Elders Worship God is another bit from Revelation (4:4) where the 24 elders worship God in Heaven.

The Elders Worship God (click to enlarge)

Saint John Sailing to Patmos is again from the first chapter of Revelation. This island off the coast of modern-day Turkey is where he had his visions recorded in revelation.

Saint John Sailing to Patmos (click to enlarge)

Flanking the Orb are two exhibits. One explains the art of making and restoring the stained glass windows. In addition to panels explaining what's going on, plenty of interactive exhibits kept J and L entertained.

Model of a window-maker's workshop

Stained glass puzzle

The West Window is covered up for restoration

On the other side of the Orb is an exhibit on masonry, explaining how the building was physically put together. This also had some hands-on displays that were so much fun, I forgot to take pictures. They did have some interesting statues, the most interesting of which is this weeping angel, which is not that kind of weeping angel.

Angel, sad about death?

For those interested, the West Window is still visible and the center of it, called the "Heart of York" for its heart-shaped framing, looks glorious with the sunlight coming through it. This visit was the first time we visited in the afternoon. Naps are becoming a thing of the past!

West Window/Heart of York (click to enlarge)

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