Liturgical Seasons

As we enter the Chapel we are visually reminded of which season of the Christian year we are in. Each season is symbolized primarily through color but elements such as texture or clarity (transparent or opaque) are also incorporated to depict the season’s focus.


Advent

Hangings
The two side banners are a deep purple color cloth. We chose purple over blue for Advent since the color blue, symbolizing the hope found in Christ’s coming, is all around us in the blues of the windows and carpet. The purple brings to mind the penitent, prayerful, posture also focused on during Advent.

Table Coverings
The table coverings echo the hangings. The Advent candles are arranged differently each year. Here they are unadorned to focus one’s attention on the light.

Vessels
Simple glass vessels covered with natural fibers are placed on the table. The baptismal bowl is clear glass to make visible the water as a reminder of our being baptized in Christ.

School is not in session during the Christmas season (Christmas Eve to January 5).


Epiphany and Ordinary Times

Hangings by Chris Overvoorde (designer) & Ellie VanHarn (quilter)
The banners have been designed to enhance our worship during the Season of Epiphany and between Pentecost and Advent. The color blue, a symbol of hope and our baptismal identity, blends into the color used since the 12th century for Ordinary Time – shades of green – to reflect the growth of God’s kingdom as well as continuing the view of creation which surrounds us (the circles hinting at the shapes of trees outside). The mosaic pieces reflect our diversity within the unity of the body of Christ. The stitched patterns create a winding path, giving voice to the journey of our faith.

Vessels by Carl Huisman
Continuing the mosaic pattern of the windows, the vessels, from the clay of the earth, have been shaped into beautiful forms of plate, pitcher, cup, and bowl to visually remind us of the gifts we have in the Lord’s Supper and Baptism. In keeping with the balance of Word and Sacraments the vessels have been proportionally sized to the pulpit, table, and font.

Table covering by Abbey Vestments, Collegeville, MN
Vestment stoles worn by Lewis B. Smedes (theologian and author) were donated to the Seminary, in his memory, by his wife Doris Smedes. This green and blue stole sometimes drapes the table during Ordinary Time.


Lent

Hangings
The two side hangings are the same deep purple cloth used during Advent with a strip of burlap added.

Table Coverings
The table coverings echo the hangings. The purple cloth reminds us of Christ’s lordship and the burlap symbolizes his humanity. A student made the crown of thorns from bushes found near the seminary.

Vessels
Simple earthenware vessels or glass vessels covered with natural fibers are placed on the table.


Easter

Hangings by Chris Overvoorde (designer) & Ellie VanHarn (quilter)
The Easter hangings have been designed to symbolize the rising sun which frames the white cross as light pours into the windows. It is stitched in a geometric pattern that echos the stained glass windows.

Table Coverings and Vessels
The Lenten glass vessels and crown of thorns are carried over into Easter as a reminder of Christ’s humbling nature. The burlap covering is replaced by white linen cloth that shimmers in the light. A white lily is added to symbolize the resurrection. It is left on the table every day of the week except Wednesdays during worship when it is replaced by a lit Christ candle.

             

Pentecost

Hangings by Randy Beumer
School is out already for summer break on the Day of Pentecost but at times we have celebrated Pentecost as our last chapel service of the year. A group of students helped create this installation of tongues of fire hanging throughout the chapel. The long streamers in the front met each other at the foot of the cross.

The Ordinary time banners made of green/blue tones hang throughout the summer until Advent.