The Sanctuary is open at all times for people to use as a place of prayer, meditation or just for some peace and quiet. The seat backs contain the Iona Community’s “Wee Worship Book” as a help should that be needed.
The window and furniture in this Sanctuary were designed and made by local craftspeople in consultation with Trinity’s Project Development Group. The copper work is by Michael Johnson and Pete Wilson, the woodwork by Dave Need and the window by Victoria Reid.
The church wanted something beautiful and inspirational to furnish this sanctuary at the heart of the meeting place it has developed to share with the wider Newlyn community. The window, communion table, baptismal font and candleholder, benches, tables and lectern had to be functional while at the same time reflecting our Christian, Celtic and local heritage. We hope you enjoy your experience of them and that you will be able to spend a moment or two in peace and contemplation with them.
Shalom Cres Peace
The communion table has a distinctly maritime feel. The boat and the ark being strong Christian symbols, the tabletop is designed to reflect a fishing boat’s decking. The cross design was the result of many hours of discussion and reflects commonly seen images of Celtic crosses with a little nod towards the Orthodox tradition. When the church shares in a communion service this table is taken out of the sanctuary into the body of the hall; bread and grape juice are placed on it. We share these in memory of the last meal that Jesus shared with his disciples. In the drawer of the table you will find some prayer and meditation material for your use in the Sanctuary. If you’d like something to take home with you, please ask a member of staff.
Much of the gospel story takes place against the background of a fishing community like Newlyn. The window, while obviously depicting Mount’s Bay, also reflects the Biblical stories, reminding us that the story of Jesus takes place within a community like ours; and that discipleship then and now is about living authentically wherever we are. The three panels of the window again pick up the theme of the Trinity and depict the deep sea, the foreshore and the land. The Celtic Cross in the window reflects the theme of the banners hung in the Tolcarne Hall.
The Lectern, at which the preacher stands to lead the service, reflects a number of Celtic and Trinitarian themes with its triangular shape at top and base, its Celtic cross in glass reflected in the copper crosses at the foot.
The scallop shell in the copperwork at the front of the lectern is an ancient Christian symbol. It is the traditional emblem of St. James the Greater and is popular with pilgrims on the Way of St James to the apostles shrine at Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Medieval Christians making the pilgrimage to his shrine often wore a scallop shell symbol on their hats or clothes. The pilgrim also carried a scallop shell with him and would present himself at churches, castles, abbeys etc. where he could expect to be given as much food or drink as he could pick up with one scoop. Probably he would be given oats, barley and perhaps beer or wine. You will find another scallop shell in the village as the 9th way marker on the Newlyn Trail.
The design of the lectern is picked up in the small corner tables. These are brought out into the hall during services and help link the congregation into the sanctuary.
The font, like the rest of the furniture, is a beautiful and unique combination of copper, brass and oak and, filled with water, is used for baptisms. It was designed to reflect Newlyn’s fishing heritage as well as having religious meaning. So the reclaimed ship’s light speaks of Jesus, the Light of the World, while the allusion in the shape of the bowl to three hulls meeting in the harbour suggests, along with the three legs on which the piece stands, the Trinity of God and of the church’s name. It also speaks of community and of how God can be known in human relationships. As you look at the font, think who is a light for you, who acts as your guide or who looks to you for guidance or wisdom and be thankful for them. Think of the water that fills the font, something we take for granted so often and which for many is the most precious of commodities. What else does the font say to you?
The candleholder’s fifteen candles reflect the fifteen bezants of the Cornish coat of arms. It also allows us to lig
ht the four candles of Advent around the fifth, larger, “Christ candle”. On Christmas Eve the holder, placed on the font, makes a wonderful centrepiece for our candlelit service. There is a saying: “It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.”
These were designed and made especially for Trinity by John and Gemma Swann and again have a very clear Newlyn feel to them, picking up well the colours of the window. They providing lovely receptacles for the flowers which decorate the sanctuary on Sundays and are taken to the sick or bereaved after the weekend.
In the hall you will find a beautiful cross above the sanctuary doors reflecting the shape of the communion table and cross within and the banners opposite made by some of the women of the church in conjunction with Golowan arts organisation on the theme of Newlyn and the Church past, present and future. There is also a sculpture by Diana Dixon, kindly given to us by her as reflecting The Centre’s logo.
With the “waves” of the front rails and the “sculling holes” in the back rails, there is again a maritime feel to the benches. Rest awhile if you can. You will find some books and prayers in the holders behind the back rails; please feel free to use them as you sit.
A prayer for all who enter the sanctuary.
The Circle of God around you be: the circle of love empowering be.
The circle of God around you be: the circle of peace protecting be.
The circle of God around you be: the circle of joy uplifting be.