St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Student Center
Just as the doves in the two tessellation windows appear to be “birthed” from the waters, St Teresa's is committed to transformations in our member's lives – especially in our VU students as they transform into young adults birthed into their vocations.
“Jesus said, "Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit." John 3:5

A message from the Artist

As a member of St. T’s since 1986 when I was a VU student, I feel blessed to have witnessed the amazing transformation of this community from the basement to this current worship space.
In August of 2008 my nephew, Adam Maletta, was tragically killed in an automobile accident, just 3 months after we had learned that my sister, Cindy King, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Cindy and I wanted to add our artistic touch to the continued transformation of the church, and so began the discussion about the windows. Cindy started taking stained glass classes to assist me in the project, but God’s plan was to take her home in August of 2009, before the windows could be started.
The work to create these windows has been a healing process for me. My prayer is that you will also be touched by them in some way. I want to thank Fr. Kevin for his prayers, encouragement, and support in allowing me to undertake this endeavor.
Terese Maletta, May 2011

The Story Behind Our Stained Glass Windows

These windows were created in memory of the artist’s nephew Adam Maletta, and her sister Cynthia King, who was a parishioner, and also wife and mother to parishioners Robert King, Kari (Aaron) Freyenberger, and Kellee (Jonathan) Hitz.

Terese Maletta earned her Bachelors in Fine Arts in 1983 from Indiana University with a double major in Art and Psychology. She earned her Education certification in Visual Arts from Valparaiso University in 1987, and her masters in Psychology with emphasis in Art Therapy from VU in 1991. She began her teaching career in Union Township schools, then moved to Duneland Schools in 1991 where she currently teaches sculpture and painting at Chesterton High School.

Terese has taught adult education courses in several mediums including ceramics, stained glass, fused glass, glass jewelry, and matting and framing. Terese is currently a member of the Chesterton Art Center where she has served on the board of directors and taught classes.
Terese is a member of St. Teresa’s and is part of the baking bread ministry and the stewardship commission.
Terese does commission work and sells her artwork at various venues throughout Northwest Indiana. She can be reached at

Sons of Thunder

The Catholic Student Center of Valparaiso University was originally named “Thunderhouse”, after the Apostles James and John who were known as the “Sons of Thunder”. “Jesus walked along [the shore] and saw two other brothers, James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and fol-lowed him.” Mt 4:21-22

The Fish in the windows represent the fisher-men, James and John, and also remind those who gather in this space to worship together that all Christians are called to be “fishers of people.”Water glass was chosen as a reminder that our call is connected to our Baptism.

 St. Teresa of Avila

In 1987, the Student Center was renamed after St. Teresa of Avila, an author and a doctor of the Church. The Doves in the windows represent one of the images St. Teresa saw and wrote about when she knew she was in the presence of God. The fish changing into doves represents the change in name from Thunderhouse to St. Teresa of Avila.
The Dove in the center window also represents the Holy Spirit, appropriately placed near the large crucifix to remind the faithful that Jesus gave the Spirit to accompany his followers on the journey after he ascended back to the Father. The windows were introduced on Ascension, 2011, through the guidance of this same Spirit.

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