Chaplains bless second stained-glass window outside our interfaith chapel

By Kristy Bleizeffer Jan 9, 2018

Staff chaplains Bab McNamara and Zac Buhuro pose with artist Sharon Harris in front of the chapel's second stained-glass window.

Thanks to the generosity of Wyoming Medical Center volunteers and individual donors, along with the talents of local artist Sharon Harris, the entrance to our interfaith chapel is now marked by two brightly colored stained-glass windows.

Staff chaplains Zac Buhuro and Bob McNamara dedicated the second window on Dec. 20 during a short blessing ceremony outside the chapel on the second floor of the McMurry West Tower.

Harris completed the first window in 2016, but health issues delayed her work on the second.

“She was so intent on finishing this project, and God bless her,” said McNamara at the ceremony last month. “People have continued to make compliments about the chapel and the stained-glass window that identifies this as a place of quiet, a place of meditation, a spiritual place people can go to really get in touch with the divine. This really has been an attractive addition to our chapel.”

The project began in May of 2015 when a former chaplain approached the Wyoming Medical Center Volunteers about raising money to install stained-glass windows in the chapel’s entryway. Volunteer Services board members Judy Linn and Kara Turner, along with several anonymous individuals, donated their own money to see the project to completion.

Project donors - Joe and Judy Linn, at left, and staff chaplain Bob McNamara - stand in front of the first stained-glass window.

The chaplain asked Harris to create a window design that embraced all faiths. Harris visited the chapel for inspiration, and she looked for colors and themes that not only complemented the space, but would be welcoming for all visitors, patients and staff members.

“It is very inviting,” Linn said. “It’s great to have a space like this. The hospital’s previous chapel was very small.”

Joe Linn, Judy’s husband, agreed: “I think it’s mandatory to have a chapel because there is often sadness in a hospital. You need a place to relinquish it. I think the artist did a beautiful job.”

Harris has worked with stained glass for about 20 years.  Though she has crafted other windows around Casper, this is one of her biggest projects. She figures she invested a couple hundred hours into the windows.

 “It was a great honor to be asked,” Harris said. “And to be able to finish, especially the second window when there was doubt I would be able to do it, is a huge blessing. I look at them now and I think, ‘Did I really do that?’”