Support the Café
Search our site

A love of detail – vestment edition

A love of detail – vestment edition

It’s warming to read of the precision in Sandy Lowery’s work. As a memorial to her brother Norm, who died in 2011 of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after eight years, Lowery decided to create a set of vestments for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Albany, New York.

In creating the Rose Set of vestments and altar linens for St. Paul’s as a memorial to my brother I aimed to achieve a design that complements the pattern of windows [within St. Paul’s, modeled on Coventry Cathedral]. It was also necessary to create a bold, colorful pattern that could be seen from the rear of St. Paul’s large sanctuary.

In the Anglican tradition, the color rose symbolizes early light and the sun (Son), soon to come, but whose end is near. Rose-colored vestments and altar linens may be used on Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday of Lent, and Gaudete Sunday, the third Sunday of Advent. I included the Lenten colors of violet (symbolic of kingship) and pink (joy) and other traditional Advent colors of pink, blue and violet (repentance and fasting).

The set’s vestments consist of a chasuble and matching stole to be worn by the priest and a dalmatic for the deacon, also with a matching stole. The altar linens include an antependium, or frontal, chalice veil and burse for each of the altars in the sanctuary and the chapel. There are pulpit and lectern falls for the sanctuary. The rose fabric is Winchester damask, and the other colored fabrics are Dupioni silk. The vestments and frontals are lined with buttercream palencia.

The love dropped into every stitch is obvious and, when you stop to add it all up, overwhelming.

Vestments were more than once made to be the focus of controversy as part of a larger question of emerging Anglican identity – the particular fixation of “vestitarian” and “edification” crises. Now, of course, our identity crisis is about something else (though there does always seem to be something brewing) and most of us would feel mostly small if we ever went to the mat again over a chasuble.

So take pride. You can see from Ms. Lowery’s writing some of what comes from raw inspiration – a chance to heal while creating something beautiful; increasing in knowledge of the lore of faith; and sharing what you know with others.

In other words, be the liturgical church you already are, and start thinking of liturgy as unapologetic mission.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinmail

Café Comments?

Our comment policy requires that you use your real first and last names and provide an email address (your email will not be published). Comments that use non-PG rated language, include personal attacks, that are not provable as fact or that we deem in any way to be counter to our mission of fostering respectful dialogue will not be posted.

3 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Aniford

See pictures of Rose Set at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Albany NY FB page or click on “facebook” button on web site at http://www.stpaulsplace.org

JC, I hunted for them myself. If Ms. Lowery or someone from St. Paul’s wants to post them somewhere and then link to them in the comments, I’m sure it would be appreciated.

Torey Lightcap

tgflux

Would anyone else like to SEE the vestments mentioned? [Was frustrated when I checked the link, not to see them]

JC Fisher

Facebooktwitterrss
Support the Café
Past Posts
2020_012
2020_013_B
2020_013_A

The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

The opinions expressed at the Café are those of individual contributors, and, unless otherwise noted, should not be interpreted as official statements of a parish, diocese or other organization. The art and articles that appear here remain the property of their creators.

All Content  © 2017 Episcopal Café