Reredos and Sanctuary Windows

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When you face the large mosaic wall with the crucifix on it, you are looking at the reredos (Rare-dose). Made of brilliant Venetian glass tiles, this magnificent mosaic and the smaller one to the right were created in Italy and shipped to the U.S. in square panels each numbered for assembly on the wall by the liturgical architects of Deprato Rigali Studios, Chicago.

All of the people in portrayed in the mosaic are Dominican saints who lived between the 13th and 18th centuries.

Use this guide to learn more about the saints that might pique your curiosity.

The Crucifix grouping in the center of the mosaic includes St. Dominic Guzman, founder of the Order of Preachers (left) and St. Catherine of Siena, the first female saint to be named a Doctor of the Church. The grouping is made of marble from the Tagliate Quarry on the Mediterranean cost of northern Italy.


The windows on either side of the reredos represent the central function of Sacred Heart Convent Chapel as a place for the praise and thanksgiving of God.

The window on the right—that is on the east side of the chapel—includes a figure, cast in the concrete and not in the glass, standing with arms extended in praise of God before the rising sun.

The window on the left—the west side of the chapel—is inspired by the words of Psalm 141, the evening hymn appropriated by Christians since the earliest days of the Church: “Let my prayer rise like incense before you; my uplifted hands an evening offering.”

In this way, morning and evening prayer, prayed by the community every day in this space, is framed by these windows and the rising and the setting of the sun.

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