The Colorado Episcopal Legacy Society
Colorado Episcopal Foundation

Legacy Tree
By Kathy Thaden

Click image for larger view.

The Colorado Episcopal Legacy Society was created by the Colorado Episcopal Foundation to promote and support the faithful stewardship of God's gifts and resources in local congregations throughout the diocese. A legacy society is comprised of a group of individuals who have remembered their church as one of the primary beneficiaries in their will, or who have made some form of permanent gift to their church. The Foundation Board of Trustees commissioned a commemorative art installation to honor the founding churches and individuals.

The Legacy Society uses a tree as its logo, promoting the diocesan vision of being one, strong, growing serving church. Lelanda Lee, Program Administrator for the Foundation, approached mosaic artist Kathy Thaden to create a design for the permanent installation. When beginning the design phase of the project, Thaden explored various themes around that of a tree.


"My desire was to depict the tree of life in four seasons, remembering Ecclesiastes 'for everything there is a season', and the seasons of our own lives." Thaden said. "It is also significant that there is a cross at the center, of the mosaic, and my life." In addition to the 38" diameter stained glass mosaic, the commemorative plaque includes engraved brass plates for the twenty-three founding churches as well as nameplates for all 375 individuals.

"As with most of my mosaics, much of the time spent cutting the many little bits of glass is spent in prayer, and the same is true for all of these brass engraved names I have prayed for these faithful Christians while working on this plaque, and give thanks for their generosity," Thaden commented at the recent dedication. "My theology of doing mosaics is found in working with things that are broken, and then through transformation and grace, the broken is made whole and new."


As a mosaic artist, Kathy Thaden is inspired to work with Christian symbols, icons and other sacred imagery. In our throwaway society she is moved to reinvent and recycle discarded items old boxes and chipped mirrors to name a few into objects of art formed in prayer.

For the past 25 years Thaden has been a professional graphic designer, animator, and art director working in television. Her primary focus has been on creating imagery for the video screen in addition to print and set design. A former president of an international design association, Thaden has won numerous awards for design, including seven Emmys. Kathy Thaden is an Episcopalian living in Kremmling, Colorado with her family. Her husband, Tim, is vicar of Trinity Episcopal Church in Kremmling. She can be reached at

Colorado Episcopal Foundation


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2005 The Episcopal Church and Visual Arts