Dedication of Altar Frontals and Pulpit Hangings

Dedication of Altar Frontals and Pulpit Hangings
The Rev. Peter L. Ingeman
Posted October 6, 2016

Remarks by Fr. Ingeman upon the occasion of the dedication of new altar frontals, pulpit hangings, and other altar linens for use in Christ Episcopal Church, Valdosta, Georgia. The text of these remarks is also available on this page in the website for Fr. Ingeman’s collection of sermons.

For an album of photographs from this event, click here.

Happy Ingeman, Laura Paine, and the Rev. Peter L. Ingeman arrange a frontal on the altar railing to display it for the congregation. Click this image to see more photographs from this event.

These frontals and the pulpit hanging add color and beauty to the altar and the pulpit, but they are more than that.

Our Episcopal Church cycles through a series of seasons every year. Centuries ago, before calendars were common, many, perhaps most, people were agricultural. They lived out their lives according to the seasons. In the colors displayed in the church, they could see a witness to the passing of the year, season by season.

Laura Paine holds the new purple pulpit hanging. Click this image to see more photographs from this event.

These purple hangings will be used at Advent and at Lent, two seasons when we are called to quiet reflection and preparation. The color is dark – like a seed germinating in the soil. The seed is the knowledge of God’s grace that we have in Jesus Christ.

Then at the Christmas season and at Easter the hangings are white or tapestry, celebrating Jesus’ Incarnation and Resurrection, the festive seasons of the church. It’s as though the seed breaks into life and light, God’s grace present with us as the seed that has been planted grows and matures through the presence and teaching of Our Lord, Jesus Christ. We hear lessons that remind us of Jesus’ words and healings.

Both the new green and purple altar frontals are visible in this photograph.

The seasons are repeated every year because they are a never-ending reminder that all we do here is to the greater glory of God.

I would love to claim credit for these beautiful hangings but I cannot. I am only a consultant. We need to thank Laura Paine and Steph Johnson for it all. And we must thank Fr. Dave, and of course, our Vestry for their support.