THE CALLING OF THE DISCIPLES
“Follow Me” is the appropriate theme of this window. With these two words Jesus calls His disciples from their ordinary ways of life. Some are simple ﬁshermen like Peter and his brother Andrew (Matthew 4:18), James and his brother John (Matthew 4:21). They follow their daily routine day after day, casting their nets into the sea and mending their nets in the evening. Then Jesus comes along, and by these simple words, “Follow Me,” the ﬁshermen become ﬁshers of men. This biblical account is depicted in the upper sections of the windows and in the coat of arms of the twelve apostles.
One of the disciples, however, belonged to a class despised by the Jews. He was Levi, or Matthew, a tax collector for the Roman emperor. The calling of this man, in whom others could see little good, is the main theme of this window. “After this He went out, saw a tax collector sitting at the tax office and He said to him, "'Follow Me.’ And he left everything and followed Him.” (Luke 5:27-28). With these brief words St. Luke describes the calling of the man who became an apostle and the author of the ﬁrst Gospel.
In the window we see Christ as He turns to Levi. The Lord’s loving gaze and the inviting gesture of His hands compel Levi to look up from his work. Then the grace of God in Christ transforms him, and now for the ﬁrst time he seems to grasp the real meaning of life and puts from him the money he has collected from his fellow men for the Roman oppressor. The coins fall to the ground just as his former life falls from him. “Behold, I make all things new.” (Revelation 21:5)
From the time of the apostles to this very day the words of Jesus, “Follow Me,” are addressed to every man, woman and child. From every continent and from all walks of life have come those who have taken Jesus’ words seriously. The path that is the way to Christ is shown in the window by representatives of different vocations: the minister, the nurse, the mother, the man who works with his hands, the physician, the teacher, the scholar, and the host of others who have dedicated their time and talents, their labor and their skills, to the glory of God and the service of their fellow men.