St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Ben Lomond hosted its annual Kirking O’ the Tartans and Feast of St. Andrew on Saturday, Nov. 17.
The annual event is a celebration of ethnic heritage that likely originated after the Battle of Culloden in Scotland, when highland dress and customs were banished. People wore a bit of tartan — traditional Scottish cloth with a pattern of plaid — hidden under their clothes to church on a day when it was secretly agreed that they would be blessed.
Others say the custom began early in American history as a tribute to the homeland of Scottish settlers in the colonies.
At St. Andrew’s, the blessing is bestowed on each tartan — and by extension on the whole clan that claims the tartan, rededicating the clan to the Christian faith.
The Rev. Blaine Hammond led the festivities, which included a procession of the flags, bagpipe music, a blessing, hymns and a potluck feast.