As you approach the Chapel, you will see in the front doors two symbols in glass. They are appropriate to our Chapel, for they are symbols of St. John, the Evangelist and the disciple of our Lord. Our Congregation bears the name of this saint of God.
EAGLE – The first symbol is that of the eagle. John’s Gospel soars to heaven as on eagle’s wings.
SCROLL – The second symbol is that of a scroll, reminding us of the Gospel he wrote, as well as his three Epistles and the Book of Revelation. The scroll begins with the name of John in German, reminding us that our congregation used the German language in its early years.
As you enter through these two doors, you step into the Narthex of the Chapel. This Narthex serves not only as a foyer or vestibule prior to your entering the Chapel proper but it is also going to be a “Hall of Memories” to us, for it is to remind us that the Chapel is a memorial named after one of the departed and sainted pastors of our church, the late Dr. August Wolff. Since many gifts for the erection and furnishing of the Chapel were given in memory of loved ones, this Narthex is truly to be a hall of memories by bringing them to mind. The “Book of Memories” with the names of these memorialized loved ones will be found under glass in the Memorial Desk that is in this Narthex.
The “Hall of Memories” contains a number of symbols in glass. All of them have to do with the hereafter; with the resurrection and the life to come. The Hand of God represents the Father who blesses. The Lamb represents the Son who died for the sins of the world and the Descending Dove symbolizes the Holy Spirit who comes to us. Under each of these three is another symbol related to them. “No one shall pluck them out of my Father’s hand” is quite obvious. The Peacock is a good symbol of the resurrection for the peacock loses its tail feathers only to receive new ones even more beautiful than the old. So Christ took on a glorious body after His Resurrection. The Seven Lamps Before the Throne of God also represent the Holy Spirit and His gifts to us, the redeemed.
The Doorway into the Church has two symbols on it: The Fountain of Life from which we are to drink forever and the Easter Lily, a reminder of the resurrection.
Then comes the Narthex Screen. All symbols in it are based on references to eternity and the life in heaven as found in the Book of Revelation. They do not appear in any particular sequence or logical order. The Ray of Light symbolizes that in heaven “there shall be no night there.” The Open Gateway reminds us that in heaven “the gates shall never be shut.” The Clasped Hands show the marriage of the bride (the Church) and the groom (Christ, our Lord). The Book of Revelation has many references to Jesus, the Lamb, and so we have included the Lamb in the Narthex Screen.
The bottom panes show the joy that is in heaven, THE ANGELS SINGING, the dominion and power that we are to exercise with Christ as we rule with Him (THE SCEPTER), the glory and honor that God will bestow upon us (LAUREL WREATH), and the face that we shall join the angels in heaven in appearing before God (ANGELS).