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The Little Story of the Big Banner

One of the first things we see coming into the church is the large, central banner, right behind the altar. This large fabric banner is something Father Scott has been carrying with him for over 30 years, as it bears special meaning for him.

Here is the little story of the big banner.

In 1984, the last year of his pastoral year at St. John the Apostle, Father Scott and a few colleagues were thinking about creating a special banner for the priestly ordination scheduled for that summer–-specifically on June 29th.

It turns out there were two feast days on that date. That particular year, since June 29th fell on a Friday, it was the feast of the Sacred Heart and also the feast day of Sts. Peter and Paul. It was an unusual coincidence. It is worth noting that all feast days of the Lord take precedence over any other feast.

One of parishioners, Marie Pierce, was an artist who had made wonderful things for the church. She was very inventive in creating a unique liturgical environment, including decorations, banners, assembling flowers. With that date coincidence in mind, and after some group brainstorming, Marie Pierce came up with a unique drawing, the size of a ping-pong table 4' x 8' on a blue background cloth.

Without any lettering on it, the banner has spoken differently to people over the years. Some see transfiguration, trinity, Sacred Heart, others self-giving, etc.

During his years at the Holy Spirit Parish (Stittsville), Father Scott used to hang it from time to time for liturgies. It is now something he uses regularly at the St. Augustine Parish.

Fun Fact. In Father Scott’s last year at the Stittsville parish (1999), the local architect and builder of Sacred Heart High School took a picture of the banner, configured a replica and created a stained glass window for the chapel. It now resides in the foyer of the high school (see picture). It turned out beautiful for all to see, ponder and it became a lasting reminder of the spirit and patron for the Sacred Heart High School.

Here we are, 33 years later, and it still speaks to our prayer life and liturgical celebrations!

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