Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Southeast Austin was recently vandalized. The perpetrators didn’t get inside or run off with anything, but what they damaged took a heavy toll. The beloved art glass that was designed with the original building had been hit by what looked like bullets from a pellet gun. One panel is shattered, another is cracked beyond repair. We’ve been helping the congregation for several years with various building issue. So when Pastor Krebs mentioned a glass repair shop was sending a proposal, I offered to assist.
The original architect, Eugene Wukasch, must have collaborated closely with the glass artist in the late 1950’s as he worked on the church design. Three etched glass panels form a large scene in the narthex with additional scenes in glass door panels. Small glass pieces in the altar rail repeat and expand on some of the same symbols. The architect also developed a beautiful composition of glass and wood in the end gable above the narthex.
Replacing the art glass will take time and artistry, but it looks like good craftspeople can do the job. Our conversation on the site this morning dealt with the bigger issue of how best to protect the glass so this won’t happen again. That also will take time. And it means the church need additional funds to make sure these art pieces are protected and preserved.
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 1711 East Oltorf Street, Austin, Texas 78741