The nave of St. James is blessed by the luminous stained glass of twenty-nine windows installed above the altar and in the celestory. The first of the stained glass windows, the Good Shepherd, was installed over the altar in the original church in 1921. St. John the Baptist and Jesus at the age of Twelve were added in 1941. Four more windows were added in the 1940’s, including two attributed to Tiffany and Company (unsigned). With these gifts a tradition of memorial windows was established at St. James. In the 1970’s the church saw a steady addition of memorial windows to include a total of sixteen windows had been given to beautify the church for the glory of God.
The sixteen original windows were moved when the new church was built at West State Street, when an additional thirteen windows were added. The window of the Risen Christ that surmounts the altar was installed in 1994 and stands 29 feet tall. An interesting feature of this window is the use of lead cames near the base curve to follow the contours of the Swannanoa Mountain range across the valley. The window is lit from inside of the church in the evening creating a striking witness to people entering Black Mountain from the west. St. James is affectionately known as the church of the “Jesus window”. There are countless stories of people receiving comfort, strength, and blessing for seeing the windows.