8:10am Friday 20th April 2012
A RANGE of unique antique vestments are set to go on display in Chard this weekend - for those with an interest in the history of the church or with a passion in the art of needlework.
Father Michael Galloway is organising an exhibition of antique church vestments at the Church of the English Martyrs in East Street on Saturday, April 21, from 10am to 4pm.
The historic items of priests' clothing are owned by Fr Galloway - a priest who assists at the church, having built up the collection of traditional vestments over many years.
The exhibition aims to highlight the beauty of vestments made in the past and the enormous skill in which went into embroidering and producing the garments - which will go on show in the parish hall and the church. There is free admission to the exhibition, which is encouraging donations to church funds.
Fr Galloway said: “We are hoping to bring the church community together, but also to give the wider community a sense of the past as well.”
The most valuable pieces belong to a Cloth-of-Gold 18th century High Mass set. However, due to the set being over 200 years old, it is showing a few signs of age, having been handed to Fr Galloway on the closure of a museum.
Many of these vestments were hand-stitched in convents by nuns. There are sets of all liturgical colours - including one 19th century chasuble with a Lyonnaise watered-silk base and embroidered with 24-carat gold bullion.
Refreshments will be served at the social event - which offers a rare insight into church history. For more information contact The Church of the English Martyrs on 01460-62197.
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