It's part of an entire set that was created, designed and made by Colleen Hintz of Fruit of the Vine Vestments.
Isn't it beautiful? Wait till you see the rest!
You'll notice lamb's ear all across the bottom of the frontal. From left to right, there are three Iris, one Tulip, three Hyacinthe, two white Daffodils, two more Iris, two red Tulip and three yellow Daffodils.
What you can't see are the lady bugs, wasps, bees and dragonfly whimsically sewn in here and there.
On your left is the hanging in front of the pulpit.
You'll see two Columbines, representing the Holy Spirit. If you look closely, you'll see another wasp moving close to the Columbine (Don't you just love the symbolism of that?)
Both hangings have wasps buzzing around the flowers, but the one on the lectern, appropriately, has three.
tad pole (symbol of fertility, change, and renewal) sitting on the leaf of the water lily on the veil.
The chasuble has a frontal piece with the following flowers: three Violets (representing humility), a Columbine (representing the Holy Spirit), a few red Carnations (symbol of pure love), a few Daisies (representing innocence), an Anenome and two different Iris (two Lilies of the field).
A large monarch butterfly dances at the top of the frontal piece just to the left of the Anenome.
The stole has a Lily of the Valley on the bottom. Moving up the left side of the stole, you'll see an Iris, a Narcissis and a Turk's Cap Lily with a humming bird on the top.
Moving up the right side of the stole, you'll find an orange Tulip, two Iris, and a butterfly. There is also a large monarch butterfly at the neck of the stole.
There is a frog on the bottom of the right side of the stole, and various lady bugs, bees, and wasps flying whimsically around the flowers.
The entire set is made of dupioni silk. Dupioni is a shimmering silk that is created by weaving silk threads of two different colors into a weave that seems to change colors as the silk is moved around in different lights. This one is a light green with very light blue threads. It picks up the blue in the sanctuary carpet in a most amazing way.
Constructed with threads made from rough silk fibers that are harvested from double cocoons or single cocoons that are spun side by side and interlocked, dupioni silk creates a shimmering effect. The two different colors of rough silk fiber help to create a very light, crisp drape quality to the finished fabric.
It does have the disadvantage of only being able to be dry cleaned, and the minor inconvenience of never being able to be steamed. It is best pressed with a 'pressing cloth'.
Colleen Hintz has been designing and making vestments and hangings since 1980. She made our Creation Season (this link will take you to my blog post about it) set, our Holy Week and Rose Vestment Set as well as a "personal journey" stole for me. Sorry, I don't have a picture of that one but you can see samples on her web page. Just click on "Galleries" then "Personal Journey."
A side note too good not to include: While you're there, check out the page for Reconciliation Season - a "liturgical season," created at Church of the Redeemer, Morristown, which includes the Sundays between the Feast of Absolom Jones and Martin Luther King, Jr.
Reconciliation Season tries to raise awareness about racism. Each of the pieces of the hangings and vestments contain a pattern from the Underground Railroad - designs that were hung on the clothes lines or otherwise outside the "Safe Houses" which gave direction and/or information to those fleeing slavery.
It's a very, very powerful collection. The one I love most is that the design that designated a "Safe House" - a place where fugitives could find shelter and hiding - is on the altar frontal.
Check it all out at Fruit of the Vine Vestments. (Yes, this is a shameless plug for my dear friend who really doesn't need it because her work speaks for itself. You'll also note while you're there that she's done some amazingly beautiful work for Bishops Croneberger, Beckwith and Singh.)
With a little persuasion, Colleen - who is a full time Public Health Nurse, former Senior Warden and present chair of the Search Committee at Redeemer, Morristown - will be happy to come to your church or organization to talk about the history of these quilts. It's a wonderful, creative, educational event.
The "Lilies of the Field" will be blessed and dedicated next Sunday, before we begin the service.
It really has to be seen "in person" to be appreciated, so, if you're ever in the area during "The Green Season," stop by. The church is open every day for meditation and prayer.
Come and consider the Lilies of the Field from Matthew 6:25-31:
"Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?
Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?
"So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
"Therefore do not worry, saying, "What shall we eat?' or "What shall we drink?' or "What shall we wear?' For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."