Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Mysteries of Church Work

So, I'm cleaning away in the costume storage area this week, cataloging and matching and seeing what needs mending and making notes of what is missing...

And what has just 'shown up'. Like this:

That green thing is a poncho, with a stole cope, as Nanflan explained in the comments. (Baptists and Pentecostals don't do liturgy/clerical wear...I honestly thought it was a fancy poncho. My apologies to the people who observe the liturgical calendar with appropriate dress and banners and such!)

I've no idea where it came from; it was just hanging amongst the 'to be washed/mended' costumes.

Actually, this is one of the least shudder-inducing things to turn up in the costume area in a while. On the empty racks, I found a couple of pieces that defy amethyst purple floral jacquard double knit women's Bible costume that has small disintegrated places in it, and a striped poly interlock vest, with a tie, on which the shoulder seams have been zig-zagged down, open (at the outer edges of the 5/8" seams), with contrasting thread. I thought maybe it was supposed to go with the jacquard garment, but it's about 3" longer, so that's not it. And there has been even uglier stuff than that... (would you believe I found a mermaid tail? For about a size 5 little girl?) and that doesn't consider all the out-of date clothes than just get dropped off in the costume area. Did they mean for it to be costumes, or was it supposed to go to the homeless ministry (which is in another building)?

What am I supposed to do with this stuff? I don't know if it really belongs to the church, or to one of the other ministries in the church, or if someone was just cleaning out their attic at home and thought we'd *love* to have it.

I guess I've just got some questions to ask.

(and I really only meant to edit my errors out, but I thought of more and better examples of what I really meant. The attic is constantly a mess; either stuff that is needed is disappearing, or stuff we can't possibly use and don't have room to store is being left for us...)


  1. Gosh Lisa, that garment actually has a real name. It appears to be a cope, a circular cape reaching to the ankle, used by bishops, priests and deacons. By the color it appears to be one worn in "ordinary time" (not a feast day, or special church time).

    I realize you didn't intend to be insensitive but the priests at my church wear vestments every week and they're certainly not "ponchos".

  2. *egg on face*

    My lack of liturgical background reared up and bit me on that one. I honestly thought all vestments were cloak like things w/sleeves...this really and truly looks like a poncho; it's made of very cheap cotton/poly broadcloth. My apologies for my bull-in-the-china-shop blundering!!! I didn't mean to disrespect the vestments...thanks for setting me straight. ;)

    But it still doesn't explain how it got into the attic with our costumes...or what I should do with it, as we are not at all liturgical at our church and don't use any kind of clerical garb.

    I'd like to know where it came from, but I don't think I'll be able to find out. I never do, with the stuff that just shows up...