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The East Church War Memorial Window

THE THEME of this window, which was erected in 1921, embraces the spiritual qualities displayed in war. In the left panel a figure robed in blue and green holds the Lamp of Truth: Above this a figure kneels at the Well of Truth with arms outstretched towards the Light, with the legend "Drink Deep." The second light depicts the figure of Sacrifice, in shaded crimson, with her briar-pierced heart. The rays of light from the heart symbolise the anguish of pain and suffering being transformed to glory by the sustaining love of the sacrificial act. In the third light the figure of Immortality is depicted rising from her "muddy vesture of decay" into the Celestial regions. Death is symbolised by the poppies at her feet. In the right-hand light Liberty is seen holding her sceptre surmounted by a Cross.

The lower panels from left to right show a kneeling figure with outstretched arms emerging from the gloom of Ignorance and hailing the light of Truth; secondly a group representing Charity; thirdly the Angel of Death releasing the soul from the body, and fourthly an angel breaking the shackles of slavery. The trellis-like background in three of the panels represents the briar which is emblematic of suffering, whilst ivy, the emblem of Immortality, can be seen in the traceried head of the window.

The main subject in the tracery is Christ seated in Divine Majesty, surrounded by adoring angels and the Dove of the Holy Spirit.

The artist of this window was Mr Meikle of Glasgow.


From the a publication by the Society of Friends of St John's Kirk

Illustrated Notes on the Stained Glass Windows and the Mediaeval Silver of the Kirk - published in 1956

- with additional photography by Andrew Mitchell -


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