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Celebration for Judith Oelfke Smith

October 16, 2022 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

CATA is planning a celebration in the Gallery honoring Judy Oelfke Smith on October 16, 2022, following the 11:00 service . Judy, a member of University Christian Church for 65 years, was a
member of the Chancel Choir for 23 years. She was one of the first women appointed to the Board of Elders, and served as Secretary of the General Board for three years. She served on the Worship Committee and as Chair for several years, also as a member of the Arts Committee off and on over the years. She designed the original sets, trenchers and Christ Candle for The Boar’s Head Festival as well as the program with descriptions of the symbolism.

Judy was involved in the 1960s with the creation of 31 new stained-glass windows for our enlarged sanctuary. Later, in the 1980s, she was asked to design the tile flooring for the center aisle and chancel to improve the acoustics for the support of choral music, organ, and congregational singing. In 1989 she was invited to design a cross for the chancel. The 7 foot, 4 inch cross illuminates the faith of the Disciples of Christ Church from a series of sacred Christian symbols, both ancient and modern. Judy’s final touch was the application of 23-karat gold leaf. 

Major projects at UCC that Judith Oelfke Smith was commissioned to do Design for symbols on a new communion table, 1965 As a designer at Smith Stained Glass Studios, Fort Worth, designed, painted and fired, and oversaw the fabrication of the additional 31 leaded windows, completed in 1968 in the expanded sanctuary, matching the style and glass of the original windows installed in 1954 by Jacoby Studios, St. Louis, MO Designed the large Celtic steel cross for the outside west wall of the sanctuary, 1999 (Built by Harry Geffert, TCU sculpture faculty) Designed and painted the large nativity doors, the trenchers, and designed the Christ Candle carved by Mr. Nichols for the Boar’s Head Festival, and produced the program design with symbol descriptions, 1976 Designed windows with symbolism for the narthex of the Chapel of the Good Shepherd (Fabricated by Don Young) 1983 Designed the tile floor herringbone pattern with stone runners, and symbols, for the sanctuary narthex, central aisle, steps, and chancel, 1984 Designed, carved, polychromed and gilded with 23 karat gold leaf the 7 foot cross for the chancel, 1989 – 1990 The wooden cross was constructed from the design by UCC member Mark Gilger. (Both Mark and Judy donated their work as a gift to the church.) Designed the stained glass for the Bell Tower window with symbols for Psalm 150 (Fabricated by Don Young) 1993 Created a design for the Columbarium room with a vaulted ceiling and a marble wall matching the Chapel walls, and designed the wrought iron gate closure, and the stained glass window choosing the 23 Psalm(Fabricated by Don Young) 1996 Served on the committee for the sculpture added in the courtyard which suggests the symbol of Christ as the source of the water of life, which was used on the cross, 1999 Designed the Mosaic symbol for the porte cochere (Fabricated by Don Young), 2002 Designed, wrote and produced the booklet art work for printing, describing the stained glass symbolism of the windows in University Christian Church, and some of our church history, 2003 (The photography and printing were underwritten by Carol and Denny Alexander who requested the book for the congregation.) All donors of our stained glass are listed at the end of the book. Judy’s work was done without pay on these projects as gifts to the congregation.


October 16, 2022
11:00 am - 1:00 pm