The Annunciation
Let’s begin to the left with the window closest to the Chapel. There, the Joyful Mysteries begin with a window depicting The Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38). We grow in humility as we pray the 1st decade of the rosary meditating on Mary’s saying yes to God’s call to become the Mother of Jesus Christ.
Next, we move to scene of the Visitation (Luke 1:39-56). In the 2nd decade we open our hearts to Charity as we meditate on Elizabeth’s spirit filled exclamation: “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.”
The Nativity
The Nativity (Luke 2:6-20) is depicted in the 3rd window. We know this scene from the Christmas Day liturgies. As we pray the 3 rd decade we are moved by the poverty of Jesus’ birth in a manger. An angel proclaims “great joy” to the world and a multitude of heavenly hosts sing praise, saying, “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
The Presentation
The 4th window brings us to the temple where Mary and Joseph dutifully present Jesus to be consecrated to the Lord as it was written in the Law of Moses. [The Presentation – Luke 2:22-39] Simeon says, “Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed.”
Find the Child Jesus in the Temple
Finally, in the 5th window Mary and Joseph find the Child Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2: 41-51). They had lost 12 year-old Jesus when they were in Jerusalem for the yearly feast of the Passover. As we pray the 5th decade we grow in prudence as we endeavor to find Jesus in our lives.
The Agony in the Garden
The scene in the 6th window depicts The Agony in the Garden with Jesus is on his knees praying so fervently that his sweat became like drops of blood, saying, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me.” (Luke 22: 39-46) As we pray this 1 st decade we feel true sorrow for our sin and ask forgiveness to cleanse our hearts and minds.
Scourges him at the Pillar
Next, we see Jesus in pain as a soldier, with whip in hand Scourges him at the Pillar (Luke 23:16-22). As we pray this second decade we grow in self-denial and purity of heart by contemplating how Jesus denied himself allowing God’s will to be done in order for others to be saved.
Crowned with Thorns
In the window next to the confessional Jesus is Crowned with Thorns (Matthew 27: 29-30). Above him a soldier brutally strikes down on the crown with a reed. As we pray the 3rd decade we grow in the grace to love our enemies (moral courage) as we reflect on Jesus’ heart aching for those who tortured him.
The Carrying of the Cross
We pass by the confessionals and the Main doors of the Church to arrive at the 9th window depicting the Carrying of the Cross (Luke 23: 26-32). When Jesus said, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me (Matt 16:24),” he was asking whether you are willing to give up your life for him. Being a disciple of Christ in our secular world may be uncomfortable or difficult and require many sacrifices. Yet, following the narrow road will bear great fruit. As you pray the 4th decade will help you grow in patience and fortitude, especially when suffering.
The Crucifixion
Finally, we reach the summit of our Lord’s Passion with the Crucifixion (John 19: 17-37). We look up to Jesus, nailed to a tree with I.N.R.I. inscribed above [meaning: Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews]. Before he bows his head, Jesus looks to his mother Mary and “the beloved disciple” at the foot of the cross and says, “Mother, behold your son. Son, behold your mother.” Here, “the beloved disciple” represents all people who will follow Jesus: His mother belongs to us, and we are his brothers and sisters if we do his will. We gain the spiritual fruit of Mercy and perseverance.
The Resurrection
The scene in the 11th window depicts The Resurrection, the greatest event in Christian history which continues to call disciples to this day. Here, the Risen Christ appears first to Mary Magdalene (Mark 16: 1-18). She went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord!” (John 20:18) As we pray this 1st decade we rejoice, emboldened in our growing faith.
The Ascension
Next, we see Jesus with his hands raised. The Gospel of Luke (24: 50-51) proclaims The Ascension scene, “Then he led them [out] as far as Bethany, raised his hands, and blessed them. As he blessed them he parted from them and was taken up to heaven.” Praying the second Glorious mystery builds hope that we will meet our Lord and Savior face to face and feel complete happiness in heaven.
The Descent of the Holy Spirit
We walk past the votive candles in front the statue of St. Sebastian to a window showing our Blessed Mother in front of Jesus’ close disciples. This scene depicts The Descent of the Holy Spirit from the Acts of the Apostles (2: 2-4): “And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind… Then there appeared in them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on them. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit allowed them to proclaim.” As we pray the 3rd decade we grow in Love of God and the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
The Assumption
The 14th window depicts The Assumption. The book of Revelation (12:1) proclaims: “A great signed appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.” Praying the 4 th decade will help you grow in the grace that leads to a happy (peaceful) death and eternal happiness.
Crowning Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth
Finally, we see Christ Crowning Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth. As we pray the 5th Glorious mystery we reflect on the life and faith of Mary and we are drawn to a true devotion to Mary, the most blessed intercessor.