It was a 5.5 hours drive from Winterset, Iowa to Justice, Illinois… very flat farming country all the way. We had one fuel stop in West Branch, Iowa which also happens to be the birth place, burial place and location of the presidential museum of president Herbert Hoover (1929-1933… during the Great Depression). We took a photo but did not stop to visit.
The destination for the day was Justice, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago). Here one finds a special cemetary called Resurrection Cemetery. It opened in 1969 to serve the Polish Catholic community but today serves all Catholics. On the premises is a large Mausoleum which boasts the world’s largest stained glass window. So you can understand why I drove so hard to get here. Monica is such a trooper to tolerate my obsession.
We arrived at 2:00 pm and toured all three floor; the basement floor contains individual windows whereas the walls of the top 2 floors are completely covered in stained glass. (!!!!!!!!!) I was breathless when we entered.
The glass panels tell the story of Christianity from the book of Genesis to Revelations. The glass is very thick (at least 1″) and is set in grout as opposed to lead and solder. The colors are brilliant and flood the entire Mausoleum with light. I took dozens of photos (one of every panel) but will post only a few here in my blog. If you look closely, there is a photo with me standing beside one of the panels and a couple of shots with Monica. This will give you an idea of size. For all photos, see Gallery/World Windows.
The Mausoleum is sometimes lit up at night and Monica and I took a drive to the cemetery at 9:00 pm in hopes to see it. Sadly, it was not lit up this night but I am still grateful to have seen it in the day time. I copied a photo from the Internet of a night shot just to show you how impressive it is. Famous for many years as the world’s largest stained glass window, there is actually a new world leader in a church in Leewood, Kansas… but this one is still so incredible it will always be the largest for me.
Here are the photo highlights of day 29 – Justice Illinois