“COME UNTO ME:Illuminating the Savior’s Life, Mission, Parables and Miracles,” by Brad Wilcox, Gayle Holdman, Tyler Griffin and Anthony Sweat, art by Tom Holdman, Deseret Book, $39.99, 88 pages
In the visitor center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Rome Italy Temple is a 20- by 7-foot stained glass window with Jesus Christ in the center reaching out to heal a man. Created by a team led Tom Holdman, the curved window is rich with symbolism from the life, ministry and teachings of Jesus.
“Come Unto Me: Illuminating the Savior’s Life, Mission, Parables and Miracles” shares those images and symbols in glass, paint and lead, along with explanations of the event.
The introduction details Holdman’s history of working with stained glass, how he was invited to work on the Palmyra New York Temple and dozens of temples, including about 800 stained glass windows for the Rome Italy Temple. It seamlessly moves to the inspiration and story behind creating the “Come Unto Me” window, from photographing models to glass placement to creating the curve in the windows, along with images of the workers creating the images out of glass.
“Few looking at the stained-glass window in the Rome visitors’ center will realize the work that went into creating it. But that is intentional,” according to the introduction.
The rest of the book points to a part of window and what it represents in the life of Christ — from words on an archway and a basket of bread to distant scenes and the people depicted in the window.
Each page includes the image, the scripture references, an explanation of its significance and also how it’s represented in the window. About 75 different images are explored and divided into three sections: “The Life and Mission of Jesus Christ,” “The Parables of Christ” and “The Miracles of Christ.” (The image map in the back notes 100 different images in the glass window.)
This book is a treasure trove of information about the life of Jesus Christ. Paired with the art of stained glass window, it creates a visually compelling book.