Ray’s and my tour of the Massachusetts State House included the Hall of Flags which is constructed of beautiful Italian marble. Italian artisans came to Boston to work on the Hall of Flags. They lived mainly in one area of Boston, an area which still has many residents of Italian descent.
The Hall of Flags honors Massachusetts citizens who have served in the military. Flags they have brought back from wars once surrounded the room, but these have been replaced by transparencies of the flags so that the real flags can be preserved.
This stained glass skylight decorates the ceiling. It includes the state seals of the original thirteen states. The seal of Massachusetts is in the center.
High above the flags are four murals, depicting scenes from Massachusetts history. One by artist Henry Walker illustrates the Pilgrims on the Mayflower sighting land. It includes a banner which reads: “FOR THE LORD IS OUR DEFENCE AND THE HOLY ONE OF ISRAEL IS OUR KING.”
Another Walker mural decorating the Hall of Flags is his depiction of John Eliot preaching to Native Americans.
Our guide talked extensively about the mural of John Eliot, telling us about Eliot’s work in creating an Algonquin alphabet and then translating the Bible into Algonquin. This Bible was the first Bible printed in America.
The spoken Algonquin language eventually died out after the last Algonquin speaker died in the late 1800s. However, our guide told us about the work of linguist Blair Rudes, who has recently been able to revive spoken Algonquin. Eliot’s Bible was a major source for this project.
Our tour group of thirty or forty people stood in a marble hall of the Massachusetts State House listening as our tour guide talked about the Bible. As we say in our family: Who’d a’ thunk it? Eliot could not have known that work he did for the glory of God in 1663 would continue to be spoken of today.
Don’t despair if you can’t see the results you would like to see from the work you do each day to bless your children and to glorify God. You don’t know what God is going to do with that work at some time in the future.
Therefore, my beloved brethren,
be steadfast, immovable,
always abounding in the work of the Lord,
knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.
1 Corinthians 15:58