Sorry to be missing in action for so long. June flew by helping my youngest to relocate to Hartford. It was a busy month. In May the parish administrators gathered for our annual luncheon. This year St. Peter’s in Narragansett was our host church. St. Peter’s is one of the most beautiful churches in the Diocese with its magnificent Gothic Revival architecture and Victorian stained glass. The high altar stained glass gives a golden glow as the story of St. Elizabeth and the miracle of the roses is portrayed. When the sun shines through this East window, the entire nave is bathed in the warm hues.
Also remarkable is the Victorian stencilling within the chancel, executed in the warm terracotta, ochre and moss green palette of the pre-Raphaelites. What a blessing this remarkable decoration was not covered up with tan paint as was the “style” at the turn of the 20th century when new fads were taken up.
The stained glass is worth the trip in itself, with a magnificent Tiffany angel and a seagull over the waves also from the Tiffany studio. The gull had to be back lit when the guild hall was built and covered the window from natural light. There are many fine examples of Victorian glass, some with fascinating and tragic stories. Varina Jefferson Davis, wife of Jefferson Davis, although a lady of the old South, was much admired by the ladies of the town when she would visit Narragansett in summer, and her memorial window bears her name. A striking window featuring a lovely angel and three cherubs has a sad story. Della Waters of Fall River, who had suffered from severe depression and who had recently been in a sanitarium, took her three young children and was heading on a Fall River boat from New York City back to her family home in Fall River when she, in a fit of despair, threw the children into the ocean and jumped in herself just off Block Island. Their bodies were never recovered. The Waters family had a summer home in Narragansett and dedicated this window.
The small sacristy is a model of neatness, and every square inch is utilized. Note the towel rods on the wall for storing fair linens! If cleanliness is next to Godliness, St. Peter’s must be very close to heaven. Do not miss the memorial garden on the west side, which is filled with perennials and herbs and divine roses!