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Webster Gardens Lutheran Church, St Louis, MO

Kouba + Knoop Architects

Donald Carlos Thomas, deign collaborator


Because many members of the congregation were affiliated with the Concordia Lutheran Seminary, there was a strong interest in developing a theme that related to the foundation of the Lutheran Church and the significant role of Martin Luther as the initiator of the Reformation.


Luther’s written text from his writings was used as the primary element of the composition to represent the fact that through the publication of Martin Luther’s writings, Christian teachings were made available to the common man for the first time.  The selected text to be used in the composition was translated into 110 different languages as a representation of the universal dissemination of his teachings.


In addition to the printed text, prismatic and dichroic glass elements were introduced to animate the light from the morning sun, casting  spectral colors and patterns into the sanctuary.  The prismatic elements float randomly through the composition, much like drifting snow flakes, and symbolically represent the omnipresent Spirit.  The dichroic glass elements are linear and directional, serving the purpose of directing attention toward the altar.  The background composition of collaged triangular forms are also oriented toward the altar.

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