THE ANTEPENDIUM (FRONTAL) - DR. GIL HAAS, SAINT AUGUSTINE OF CANTERBURY EPISCOPAL CHURCH, OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA
This is Our Story
An antependium is a hanging cover, and, when applied to an altar, it is called a frontal. The frontal is often made of silk or brocade cloth and matches the liturgical color of the church season. Altar hangings were once on all sides of the altar. However, as altars were placed against back walls of churches in the later middle ages, only the front of the altar was visible to the congregation. Frontals may also be made of precious metal, decorated wood, gems, enamels, and ivories. When the front of an altar is elaborately carved or painted, the additional cloth altar frontal normally reaches down only a few inches from the top of the altar table; this is called a “frontlet”. A Jacobean frontal will cover the entire altar. The Anglican Canons of 1603 order that the Lord’s Table should be “covered, in time of Divine Service, with a carpet of silk or other decent stuff, thought meet by the Ordinary of the place”. Covers for lecterns and pulpits are generally similar to a frontlet, normally covering the desk of the lectern or pulpit and hanging down about a foot or longer in front.
~Dr. Gil Haas, Saint Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Various Clergy and members of St. Augustine contribute to authoring the blog on a variety of topics.