An old English tradition

Baltimore church plans to sponsor a flower festival
April 30, 2004

A CHURCH IN Baltimore is hoping Mother Nature will help grow funds for the national cathedral.

Church of the Redeemer Episcopal Church plans to hold a flower festival Oct. 14-17 to raise money for the National Cathedral Association chapter in Maryland. It’s an event not unknown, but not commonplace, this side of the Atlantic.

“They originally started in England after the Second World War, when so many churches were bombed during the blitz,” explained parishioner Pam Meier. “A lot of churches held festivals of flowers to raise money for the restoration. There have not been very many done in the United States.”

“There will be 40 different arrangements in the church and the chapel,” said Meier, who is co-chairing the event with Leslie Baldwin. “They’ll be done by professional flower arrangers, garden clubs and church altar guilds. ... We will sort of vet this whole program, so we have the very best of the best as far as arrangers are concerned. It’s going to be a beautiful celebration of the cathedral in flowers.”

“Our hope, since this is a benefit for the National Cathedral in Washington, is that we can stress the fact that the National Cathedral is a church of prayer for all people.” They hope to have a Jewish temple erect a Succoth hut, for example, and ikebana flower arrangers to bring in Buddhist or Shinto influences, she said. They also hope to involve the Roman Catholic cathedral in Baltimore.

For more information about the festival, contact Meier at