"Creation" was designed by Martin Blackburn using
symbols for figures and event in the Arapaho story of creation. In the two bottom panels, the yellow diamond represents
the first man sitting with a pipe on the ocean. Above and below are chevron-shapes representing ducks who helped create
the world by diving into the water for mud. The large chevrons at the top and bottom are clouds and along each side
are mountain symbols done in black. In the center of each mountain design is a symbol for the mythological cave of the
buffalo, where legend says the buffalo came from. The yellow diamonds represent the turtle who brought the mud from
the ocean floor and made the world.
Another Curtis Oldman design uses nature symbols
to portray change in life. The central design is the Arapaho symbol for a caterpiller, who eventually changes into a
moth or butterfly. Done in orange, dark blue and yellow, the trio of caterpillers are arranged down the center against
a white background. Flanking the caterpillers are variations of a mountain symbol done in red. The symbol of a
trail surrounds the design elements along the edges of each section.
"Butterfly" is the creation of Bob Spoonhunter.
The central symbols in the lower panels is a Whirlwind Woman design. This disc-shaped symbol was traditionally used
on the hoods of baby cradles and also on the outside of Arapaho tipis. This particular pattern was taken from
an Arapaho cradle at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. Above and below this are horizontal diamond-shaped
symbols for navel bags. Umbilical cords of babies were historically saved as a form of good luck amulet. Separating
these elements are horizontal bars in red, black and yellow, which are symbols for trails. The upper panels incorporate
the trail symbol, with halves of the navel bag symbol above and below the red, yellow and black butterfly symbol.
"Blue Cloud", a creation of Martin Blackburn, represents
the Northern Arapaho. The center of each bottom panel, the yellow circle ringed with orange and red is a symbol for
the sun, giver of life. Surrounding the sun in four directions are blue cloud symbols, representing the Arapaho who
were known as the Blue Cloud People by some Plains tribes. Above and below the central sun and cloud symbols are bars
of red, orange and yellow, the symbol for trails. Mountain symbols in yellow, orange and red are placed at the top and
bottom of each panel. These symbols portray the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, the historical homeland of the Arapaho.
The two panels in the lower half of the top section contain mountain symbols in yellow, orange and red. These connected
symbols represent the reflection of mountains in Grand Lake, a sacred site for Arapaho in the Colorado mountains.
The half-moon shaped window over the front doors
of the church is patterned after a star quilt design. This design is common to many tribes in the Great Plains region
of the United States and Canada. The Arapaho word for this pattern translates into English as "Star Blanket."
This window was a collaborative effort in design and construction.
"Neyooxetisei" is the name given to the large round
window on the front of the bell tower (see HOME page). In English, this name means "Whirlwind Woman." According
to tribal legend, Whirlwind Woman was one of the persons who helped create the world. Once the Creator made the world,
it was a little smaller than expected so Whirlwind Woman used her powers to enlarge it. She travelled in circuits around
the earth, making it larger as she went and creating quillwork designs to mark her trail. These symbols later formed
the foundation of a quillwork society among Arapaho women, whom Whirlwind Woman taught the art of porcupine-quilling and the
ceremonies for creating certain objects. Among these objects were tipi ornaments made of quilled discs. Four of
these discs were attached at intervals to the outside of tipis, and a fifth attached at the very top at the back. The
same style disc ornaments were also used on baby cradles. The pattern for the bell tower window was adapted from an
Arapaho baby cradle. The design and construction of this window was a collaborative effort of Bob Spoonhunter, Martin
Blackburn and Curtis Oldman.