During coffee hour on February 3rd, Rev. Lincoln McKeon and his ‘models’ introduced us to the many layers of Anglican vestments. Most of us knew about the cassock, alb and stole, but who had heard of the maniple, tippet and tunicle? So, I took notes, then looked them up on google, only to get more overwhelmed. There is so much history attached to clerical garb.
- Tippet: “preaching scarf” designates permission to preach
- Maniple: in early Christianity, narrow silk band worn over the left forearm, with ends hanging down on each side, and formerly used by clergy when celebrating or assisting at eucharist. The maniple was probably derived from a handkerchief or table napkin used by Romans, which evolved into a ceremonial napkin. We learned that it is rarely used now as it could quite easily sweep the bread and wine off the altar with one majestic sweep of the arms!
- Tunicle: Overshirt worn by a deacon, can also be called a dalmatic
Other Anglican clerical garments that were explained and modeled were the Victorian frock coat (formerly worn with gaiters and a clerical apron); the academic hood; chasuble and cope. By the way, one of the meanings of IHS on the back of the chasuble is Iesus Hominum Salvator - Jesus, Savior of men.
Our education on clerical wear included the relevance of colours:
- Black cassock – easier to recognize in the community as a priest
- Chasubles & Dalmatic colours:
o Purple or blue – Advent
o Purple – Lent
o White – Christmas and Easter, Major Feast Days, Weddings
o Green – Season after Epiphany and after Pentecost
o Red – the Day of Pentecost, Saint’s Days & Ordinations
I apologize if I have made any grievous errors – the above are my Cliff’s notes! The mini-lesson given by Lincoln was really interesting and fun. Thank you to the wonderful models and all in attendance.