Jun 9, 2006

Vestes Sacrae

Vestments are those clothings worn for the liturgical rites. I'm often surprised by the inappropriate and cheap vestments that I've seen used in parishes. I'm not simply noting those vestments regularly seen which are worn, frayed, soiled, stained, wrinkled, etc. I'm talking about the quality of the vestment and it's appearance even when new. There are a variety of companies out there that provide liturgical supplies and for the large part their offerings in the category of vestments are ugly, of cheap quality while still managing to draw an exorbitant price, and often entirely inappropriate for use in liturgical rites.

As I live in the south western United States, I have an utter distaste for the fad which appeared here favoring a southwestern pattern and colors which have no Catholic or even Christian significance. I suppose when parishes and dioceses stop purchasing these horrid pseudo vestments these companies will stop making them. Now I understand the position of poor parishes having to make do with what they can, but when I see what they spend on the flower arrangements (perishable) and the cloths and banners to decorate the Church for the liturgical seasons (much of which is simply in poor taste) I'm not buying their excuses.

The chasuble above is a perfect example of how vestements ought to look. I realize that it's a semi-gothic style rather than the fiddleback and that's part of my point. There's a variety of styles to be found that are truly beautiful liturgical vestments. The chasuble above is from www.susanmaria.com. Please take the time to visit and browse the site. The vestments from this site are custom made. The price for this spectacular chasuble? An extremely reasonable $499.00 US. I've seen chasubles that are absolutely dreadful priced at above $1500.00.

Do you know a seminarian or priest? Then get together with other members of the parish, or if you have the means - do it yourself, and purchase a chasuble set with matching stole, chalice veil, and burse. Begin the return to beauty in our churches by donating these beautiful offerings yourself. This is after all how it is traditionally done. If anyone else knows of interesting sites that offer things like this then let us know.

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