The Stained Glass Window Dedicated to Jeanette Hurd

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Jeanette Victoria Hurd was an active member of St.  Augustine’s Episcopal Church. She served on various committees. She was fond of and love beautiful things. Her passion in life was gardening, finely tailored hats, and clothing. She collected beautiful elephant figures from far and near. She had a sassy attitude along with a sassy walk and could give a look the told you to back up! Jeanette loved Mexican food, spicy food fried chicken Margaritas, and ice cream. She loved gardening with a group called “The Lovely Ladies” once a month brunch or lunch. Jeanette attended McClymonds High School and Business College. She was married to Ted Hurd who proceeded her in death.

The Jeanette Hurd Memorial Stained Glass Window is based on Julian (or  Juliana) of Norwich, also known as Dame Julian or Mother Julian (late 1342 – after 1416).  She was a medieval anchoress and theologian who was best known for writing the earliest surviving book in the English language to be written by a woman, Revelations of Divine Love.

This is a work on the Love of God in which St. Julian offers fervent prayers for a deeper understanding of Christ’s passion.  Her visions revealed Christ’s sufferings with extreme intensity, but they also confirmed God’s constant love for humanity and his infinite capacity for forgiveness.  Her Revelations have had a lasting influence on Christian thought.

She lived throughout her life in the English city of Norwich, an important center for commerce that also had a vibrant religious life.  However, during her lifetime she was a witness to the devastating effects of the Black Death of 1349, the English Peasants' Revolt, which affected large parts of England in 1381, and the suppression of the Lollards.

In 1373, at the age of thirty and so seriously ill when she thought she was on her deathbed, Julian received a series of visions or "showings" of the Passion of Christ and of Mary, mother of Jesus. She recovered from her illness and wrote two versions of her experiences, the earlier one being completed soon after her recovery, and a much longer version being written many years later.  From her writings came Julian’s famous “All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well” quote which Jeanette gained strength and solace from during her life and would often repeat in abbreviated form. 

Julian was the greatest of all of the English anchorites of the Middle Ages.  An anchoress was a woman who was walled into a cell to live a life of prayer and contemplation.  For much of her life, Julian lived in permanent seclusion as an anchoress in her cell, which was attached to St Julian's Church in Norwich, England.  Julian’s name is taken from this church; no one knows her given name. She lived and prayed in one or two rooms attached to the church.  One window opened into the church so she could participate in services.  The other window opened onto the street letting her listen to stories of the poor and suffering to which she gave solace and spiritual counsel.  She spent the last half of her life in this place, probably 50 years. Look closely at the window to view an unexpected and delightful surprise! A lovely depiction of St. Augustine’s Church replaces St. Julian’s Church as a modern day reminder that as Julian of Norwich proclaimed, “All shall be well and all shall be well.”


St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church

“If you desire to praise him, then live what you express. Live good lives, and you yourselves will be his praise.”


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