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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Of weaving and worship

Book tells history and craft of liturgical textiles


Some of the most creative art done recently for houses of worship has been in textiles. That artistry is wonderfully demonstrated in Weaving for Worship: Handweaving for Churches & Synagogues.

The author-editors, Joyce Harter and Lucy Brusic, are both Minnesota Lutheran weavers. Six other weavers contributed chapters on subjects from the history of the craft to the specifics of symbolism in paraments and vestments.

Both a "how to" and a "why" book, Weaving isn't just for artisans, but for all those who wish a greater understanding of this process, its background and uses. Containing technical information and suggestions, the work is also filled with rich material about religious symbols, the meanings of liturgical articles and vestments, and stories of artists' and congregations' experiences.

Religious use of textiles, we learn, stems from biblical instruction. Exodus 26 begins: "Moreover you shall make the tabernacle with 10 curtains of fine twisted linen, and blue, purple, and crimson yarns; you shall make them with cherubim skillfully worked into them."

In Christianity, variety in treatment of fabrics "grew out of the culture within which the faith developed," the authors explain. No wonder the term "weaving" is such a frequent image for creating and for coming together in community.

Weaving contains many beautiful color photos of woven objects and their settings, revealing an amazing variety in themes and treatments. The sections on Jewish weaving and symbols are equally interesting for a Christian reader.

You can order from the publisher: Robin and Russ, 533 N. Adams St., McMinnville, OR 97128-5513 for $45, plus $4 postage and handling. Or call (800) 932-8391 for more information.


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