A beautiful feature of Sacred Heart Church is the series of magnificent stained glass windows crafted by Franz X. Zettler’s company of Munich, Germany; Royal Bavarian Art Institute. Zettler (1841-1916) worked for his father-in-law’s company, Institute for Christian Art Works, before starting his own stained glass company in 1870. At the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893, Zettler won top prize for his stained glass. In 1939, the two companies merged. Zettler was known for painting perspective into his windows. This can be seen particularly in our church’s window depicting the Epiphany.
The Sacred Heart Church stained glass windows were not installed immediately when the church was built in 1914. It is believed that after being shipped from Germany, the windows sat on the dock in New York for many months due to delays during World War I. Individual and organization donor names are written at the bottom of the windows. Also, look for F.X. Zettler’s name.
In medieval times, when many people could not read, the scenes depicted in stained glass windows told the important stories of their faith. How fortunate we are today to look upon such beautiful artistry from 100 years ago and ponder the tenets of our faith.