Rena Nachman Kates Stained Glass Windows

Rena Nachman Kates Stained Glass Windows
(Click on sub-tab “Tour Biblical Windows” to see each panel)

“We read an account of the first day of Creation in the 
Old Testament, ‘And God said, Let there be Light 
..and God saw the Light and said it was good. ” 
Genesis 1: 2 – 5


Rena Nachman Kates Stained Glass Windows

Dedicated January 27,1995, the stained glass windows of the Temple Sinai sanctuary create a sense of history and tradition. They are a farewell gift to the Temple from Rena Nachman Kates, 1898-1992. This gift, like the life of the donor, is a lesson in beauty inspired by stories of Torah. The windows will give future generations a sense of history and tradition through the artistry of stained glass. 

Marsha Maurer, a registered nurse, who then lived in Newport News (Virginia), is self-taught in reviving the lost art of stained glass. She brings historical perspective to each of the panels, which represent Adam and Eve, Sarah and Abraham, Rebekah, Rachel and Leah, Deborah, Zipporah and Moses, Ruth and Naomi, Jechebet, Miriam, and Queen Esther (click on the menu sub-tab “Tour Biblical Windows” for a picture and the Biblical background).   The panels depicting the Lions of Judah, shown with the Ten Commandments, serve as a “crown” for the windows. 

Borrowing from the genius of Tiffany, the artist employed two layers of glass. Most of the glass was supplied by the same companies used by Tiffany, with the clear glass coming from Poland. Mixed with clove and lavender oil, ground glass, and pigments are painted onto glass, then heated to 1,400 degrees. To achieve depth, the hands and drapery pieces received up to ten firings. 

The structural integrity of the project was overseen by Ray Gregory of Art Glass Resplendent, Inc., of Norfolk (Virginia). 

The photographs of the windows were taken by Kathy Keeny of Norfolk (Virginia)

On October 30, 2015, Marsha Maurer discussed the creation of the Biblical stained glass windows at Temple Sinai.  We have CDs of this presentation available for $5 at the Temple office or gift shop.