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2010-01-21 digital edition

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2010-01-21 / Church

One of the Original Painted Churches?

Trinity Lutheran Church in Fedor recently underwent somewhat of a restoration, which revealed signs that implied the organizers may have intended it to be a “Painted Church”. Trinity Lutheran Church in Fedor recently underwent somewhat of a restoration, which revealed signs that implied the organizers may have intended it to be a “Painted Church”. When the congregation of Trinity Lutheran Church in Fedor began a small church “restoration” several months ago in preparation for their 150th Anniversary celebration scheduled for 2020, many were surprised to see some stenciling and faux marbling painted above the altar, in the balcony and at the narthex. Some wondered if Trinity may have been one of the original “painted churches” that are so prevalent in this part of Texas, especially when you consider that the congregation was established in 1870 by Lutheran Wend immigrants who first settled in this part of Texas from Germany in 1855. It was the Wends who decorated their churches in a style that dubbed them “painted”.

KLRU radio says this about “Painted Churches” on their website: “Cross the threshold of these particular Texas churches and you’ll encounter not a simple wooden interior but an unexpected profusion of color. Nearly every surface is covered with bright painting: exuberant murals radiate from the apse, elaborate foliage trails the walls, wooden columns and baseboards shine like polished marble in shades of green and gray. These are the Painted Churches of Texas.”

Stenciling, which has been restored, above the place where the altar stands was uncovered during the restoration. The verse above says “Glory to God in the Highest” in German. Stenciling, which has been restored, above the place where the altar stands was uncovered during the restoration. The verse above says “Glory to God in the Highest” in German. Regardless of whether or not the organizers of this beautiful, quaint church may have intended it to be embellished in the same vein as those in Serbin, Schulenberg, Flatonia, and Shiner, to name a few, it was a real surprise to find the delicate artwork under countless layers of paint earlier this summer.

Support and decorative beams were found to have been painted in a faux marbling style, the technique of which has been found to be commonly used in many of the Painted Churches in Texas. Support and decorative beams were found to have been painted in a faux marbling style, the technique of which has been found to be commonly used in many of the Painted Churches in Texas. Even though the restoration isn’t totally complete yet, the results of a fresh coat of paint, the restoring of the stenciled verse above the altar and the refinishing of the original wood floor have all given this small church a bright – perhaps halo-like — lift!

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