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one man’s religion

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stainglassRowan LeComte has been working in stained glass since 1939 when he was 14. He still works every day and has made 45 window and six mosaic murals for the National Cathedral in Washington, DC. His windows are in 50 other American churches and public buildings. During an interview with Scott Simon on NPR, he spoke with a gentle voice about what matters to him the most. Here’s my rough transcript of part of what was said:  

Host: Church windows are designed to give many people a sense of awe … it is safe to say, a sense of God. Do you believe in God?

Mr. LeCompte: I believe in kindness and love. And there are some who say those are God. I don’t know, but I respect and love kindness and love, and worship them. And if that means lecompteworshipping God, I’m delighted.

Host: Is there an after-life?

Mr. LeCompte: I would like very much for all of us to have another chance at life, after we die. I don’t know if that’s possible. And I don’t know if I ever find out. But I hope I will. And rejoice totally … because there are a number of people I have loved so much in my life that have died. And I would like to see again my dear, dear science professor, and my mother. She was so kind, she was the embodiment of goodness. They both died before their time.

I’m not long for this world, I think, because I have been diagnosed with a difficulty. O my gosh, enough of my private life. But I love love, and I love kindness. And I wish the churches would emphasize more kindness. Kindness to everybody. 

source: NPR Weekend Edition, Saturday, April 11, 2009; the 9-minute interview is now available for you to hear.

One response »

  1. “My religion is simple. My religion is kindness.”

    “All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness. The important thing is they should be part of our daily lives.”

    ~Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama.


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