Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

The sacred art of Holy Week & of Easter April 21, 2019

Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane shortly before his crucifixion. I photographed this window at Vang Lutheran Church, rural Dennison. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


IN MY YEARS of photographing churches, most in rural Minnesota, I’ve grown to appreciate stained glass windows. They prevail in country churches.


Jesus’ crucifixion as depicted in a stained glass window inside Holden Lutheran Church, rural Kenyon, Minnesota. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


All tell stories, most biblical. I admire this visual art, this way of sharing scripture and faith that connects beyond words.


The beautiful sanctuary of Holden Lutheran Church, filled with stained glass windows. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


As sunlight streams through the colored pieces of glass, that bold beauty causes eyes to land on the art, to focus on whatever the artist has chosen to depict. Holiness. Reverence. Hope. Eternal life.


The women and angel outside the empty tomb on the risen Lord as interpreted on a stained glass window in Holden Lutheran Church, rural Kenyon. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


I sorted through my photo files selecting specific stained glass window images that portray today. Easter.


This shows a snippet of the center stained glass window in a trio above the altar at Trinity Lutheran Church, Wanamingo, Minnesota. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


May you see in these stained glass art photos the story of Holy Week and the reason I celebrate Easter—the resurrection of Christ.


A photo of Christ’s face from a stained glass window in my church, Trinity Lutheran, Faribault. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


A most blessed and happy Easter to each of you, dear friends.


NOTE: As I wrote this post Monday afternoon, I heard breaking news of the devastating fire at the Notre Dame Cathedral. While I’ve never been there, my heart breaks for this loss of a house of worship, for the works of art and history and heritage therein. Such a loss causes me to value even more the stained glass windows of the churches I’ve photographed. 

© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


12 Responses to “The sacred art of Holy Week & of Easter”

  1. therandomblogofirreverentthoughts Says:

    Beautiful post, thank you for sharing.

  2. These are lovely! We attended a small country church growing up, and there was a beautiful stained glass window of Jesus in the Garden of Gesthsemane. My favorite was of a joyful Jesus holding a child close with several children around him. The colors were (and are) so deep and rich. I remember how the reflections of color would dance across the pews when the sun would hit them just right. Happy Easter! He Is Risen.

  3. Gunny Says:

    The loss of or the damage to Notre Dame is crushing on so many levels. All churches are shrines to the Lord God and bear witness to the devotion, the efforts in art, architecture and the praise of God and the customs of the people who worship there. These buildings are basically structures endowed beyond other buildings with the spirit of God and his flock.

  4. JanBeek Says:

    I love stained glass windows, too. Thank you for these lovely photos. Happy Easter to you. I hope you had a blessed day.

  5. Such beauty! Thank you for sharing.

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