Parkland Lutheran Church
There is a debate about where the community of Parkland got its name, some contend that it was Rev. Bjug Harstad, our congregation’s first pastor. But the reason for the name is not debated: as the settlers came through, the land was picturesque, like a beautiful park. On the occasion of the 75th Anniversary, the congregation renovated the surplus military chapel and gave the chancel area a more distinctive look. Among the renovations was the artwork in relief by Mr. John Hanson. One can see the waters of life cascading from the throne of grace (Ezekiel 47 and Rev. 22). Large waves spread to either side of the chancel to the Baptismal font and the pulpit. To the left of the waterfall stood a tree, like what was spoken of in Psalm 1, “that yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.”
Now on the occasion ofour 125th Anniversary, Parkland has again put our hand at bringing our theology into artistic relief in the Chancel and extending it into the Nave with the installation of the stained glass. We have appreciated and have kept the “Park – land” theme as we planned the various scenes in the stained glass windows. Numbers 24:5-7 has served as a guiding theme:
“How lovely are thy dwellings, O Jacob, thy tents, O Israel!
Like woodland valleys they give shade and like parks by rivers,
like tents, which the Lord has pitched, like cedar-trees by streams.
There shall come forth a Man from among his seed, and He shall rule over many peoples.”
The distinct cross that once stood to the left of our free-standing altar has taken the central place in the back of the Chancel as the Tree of Life, bearing the fruit of eternal life, the body of Christ. The natural shape of the crucifix draws your attention downward to the altar where Christ’s real body and blood are distributed to God’s people.
The window scenes that have been selected have been chosen with three distinct thoughts in mind: 1) it pictures an important part of our salvation history, 2) it is a scene that reflects a park, or garden, or paradise theme, and 3) it walks us through the liturgy of the Divine Service. The reason for the final part is that the Parkland church building, while very dear to us, is dear to us because of what happens here, our God comes to us to lavish us with His grace and forgiveness. While we walk this life of sin and death, we have a foretaste of heaven here on earth as God comes to speak to us through His Word, read and preached, and to unite Himself to us in Holy Baptism and the Holy Communion. Here then is a bit of paradise.
Old Testament (West Side of the Nave)
- Paradise Lost The Invocation
- The Flood Confession & Absolution
- Crossing the Red Sea The Introit (Entrance)
- David as a Shepherd (Ps. 23) The Kyrie Eleison (“Lord, have mercy…”)
New Testament (East Side of the Nave)
- Bethlehem Shepherds The Gloria in Excelsis Deo (“Glory be to God in the highest”)
- Palm Sunday The Sanctus (“Holy”)
- The Garden of Gethsemane The Agnus Dei (“Lamb of God”)
- The Garden of the Holy Sepulcher The Alleluia (“Praise the Lord”)
- Paradise Restored The Benediction
The picture to the right is the first draft of our window scene #9. Notice the Water of Life cascading from our Savior’s hand.
Find out more about Lynchburg Stained Glass. They were our contracted glass studio. The windows were installed and dedicated on October 14th, 2018 at our 125th Anniversary Festival celebration.