Alumnus Inspired to the Priesthood Through Stained-Glass Window

Aug 8, 2018

A work of art often inspires wonder in those who admire it, and sometimes beauty can inspire something even greater. This is true for Fr. Noah Morey ’08, the parochial vicar of All Saints Catholic Church in Manassas, Virginia, who was deeply impacted by the stained-glass windows in Christendom’s chapel while he was a student.

During his time at Christendom, Morey frequently spent time praying in Christ the King Chapel. He appreciated being able to make frequent daily visits any time throughout the day.

The Sacred Heart window in Christ the King Chapel was a direct influence on alumnus Fr. Noah Morey’s path to the priesthood.

“It became the norm to make a visit to the chapel,” he says. “Whether it was during a more formalized Holy Hour during adoration, or just stopping by on the way back from the gym or soccer field to pause for a few minutes to reflect on God’s presence, I frequently experienced God’s closeness to us at Christendom, especially in the sacramental life, and most especially in the Eucharist.”

He remembers meditating particularly upon the stained-glass window directly above the high altar: an image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with His hand raised in blessing, inscribed with the words “Son, Give Me Thy Heart,” a reference to Proverbs 23:26.

Morey reflected on those words even before he knew they were a Scripture verse, usually attributing the phrase to God the Father speaking to Jesus. But after a conversation with his roommate, who is now a priest as well, Morey began to wonder if those words were personally addressed to him in the form of a call to the priesthood. Seeing that call presented to him in the window every day kept the question in the forefront of his mind.

Fr. Morey’s first Mass.

“I recognized how powerfully God was speaking to me through the beauty of that window and through the verse that was contained therein,” he said.

Morey went on to enter Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in 2009 and was ordained a priest of the Arlington Diocese in 2015.

Today, Morey still has a love for beautiful sacred art.

“There is a reason why the Church’s architecture is so beautiful,” he says. “God uses outward signs to convey His inward grace. Our Faith is incarnational, it is body and soul, human and divine, so having that all brought together in the beauty of a window is very powerful, and certainly that is true of other parts of Church architecture as well. Within the liturgy, that’s why we have bells and incense, stained-glass windows, and colorful vestments.”

Fr. Morey notes that we are sensory creatures, so we are not meant to detach from the body.

“We want to use the senses to draw closer to God and give glory to Him in that way.”

You can remember your loved ones in perpetuity by dedicating one of the remaining exquisite features of the new Christ the King Chapel: new stained-glass windows, altars, and more, including restoration projects of current stained-glass windows and Stations of the Cross. To learn more about dedication opportunities, please contact Vice President for Advancement Paul Jalsevac at 540-551-9171, pjalsevac@christendom. edu, or visit campaign.christendom.edu.

About Christendom

Christendom College is a Catholic liberal arts college offering a time-tested and rigorous education that develops the student’s intellect in such a powerful way that he graduates with the ability to master any subject—no matter how complex the vocational calling.
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