ZION CHURCH EVENTS

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ZION CHURCH OF BALTIMORE

DANKESCHÖN / Thank you to Betty and Dutch Niemann for donating an original Erzgebirge Schwibbogen that was raffled to benefit the Zion Restoration Campaign, and congratulations to Leslie Trageser, the lucky winner! Thanks also to Ellen Solomon for displaying part of her great collection of Erzgebirge figurines at the Christkindlmarkt!

Further Dankeschöns to Roswitha Schmitz for making and donating (on behalf of the Edelweiss Club) a beautiful Afghan and to Harry and Dianna Winsor for donating a valuable Hummel limited edition Engel Puppe. Both items were also raffled at the Christkindlmarkt to benefit the Zion Restroration Campaign. Congratulations to Ellen Solomon and Margarete Kramer, the respective winners.

The Schwibbogen – Christmas decoration from the ERZGEBIRGE

The miners who have been extracting ore from the mountains here since the Medieval Ages have always yearned for light and it is this yearning which is the origin of many of the motives to be found in the Erzgebirge crafts. Should you journey through the towns and villages of the Erzgebirge at Christmas time, you would see the festive glow of numerous arcs, some of them bigger than a human being, in public places and in the windows of the houses.
For more than 250 years they have been associated with the Erzgebirge Christmas and have become an inseparable part of the festive decorations. Johann Teller, a mining blacksmith from Johanngeorgenstadt is said to have made the first candleholder of this type in wrought iron about 1726. According to the story handed down, the form of the arc is of mining origin.
On Christmas Eve at the mine, the miners hung their lighted lamps in a semi-circle around the entrance of the mouth of the tunnel leading to the mine at the last shift before Christmas, the so-called "Midnight Mass shift". The "Schwibbogen" (Christmas candle arcs) which literally means "an arched buttress" probably took its name from the vocabulary of architecture. In Gothic times, the "Schwebebogen", a buttress, was a freestanding, supporting arch between two walls.

[reproduced with permission from a booklet of Dregeno-Seiffen eG
Genossenschaft der Drechsler, Bildhauer, Holz- und Spielwarenhersteller Seiffen.

For more info, see www.dregeno.de ]

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