Tuesday, March 03, 2009

It must be Lent: the scaffolding is back

Last year's Lent began with an enormous scaffolding in the apse. This Lent will follow 2008's precedent.

Monsignor Gier hired a company from Kansas to paint a gold stencil over the magenta-painted wall behind the high altar. They built a relatively small scaffolding that they will use throughout Lent.

This is a preview of the pattern. Please note that the colors are not correct. The magenta background is accurate, but the foreground color is going to be different. The new paint will be a gold similar to the paint used on the ribs of the arches.

You may be curious about why Monsignor Gier chose the symbols in the stenciling. Since the Blessed Sacrement is reserved in the tabernacle in the high altar, it is fitting to use symbols which proclaim the Real Presence.

The Greek letters Chi and Rho are widely used in churches. Chi and Rho are the first letters in the name Christ. In our alphabet, the letters look like a P and and X.

The other two symbols are grapes and wheat, traditional symbols of the Eucharist. They are seen in the high altar as well.

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