The history of the Boar’s Head Festival originated in the Roman Empire, nearly two thousand years ago, when the boar was the first dish served at great Roman feasts.
In Norman England, the boar was the sovereign of the forests, a menace to man and a symbol of evil. By the 12th century, the serving of the boar’s head at Christmastide bad become symbolic of the triumph of Christ over Satan.
The Yule Log, a fresh log lighted by last year’s embers representing both the warmth of the family fireside and the continuance of human life and concern, has from earliest times symbolized the rekindling of Christ’s Love. The old year passes and the new is born, yet the same Love lights each.
No one knows who planned the first Boar’s Head procession, but Queens College in Oxford, England, records a Festival shortly after the founding of the University in 1340. After three of four centuries at Oxford and Cambridge, the ceremony added the mince pie, plum pudding, and much of the cast as is seen here at Trinity. The Festival was a popular Christmas event in the 17th century, and the custom was carried to colonial America. Trinity’s first Boar’s Head Festival took place in January, 1984, as an Epiphany gift to the greater Springfield area.
THE LIGHT TO ALL THE PEOPLE
After the candle sprite and the minister have gone forth with The Light, we invite you to continue this celebration of Epiphany by seeing the animals in the Chapel “Stable” and by joining us for refreshments with the revels in Asbury Hall to the right of the Sanctuary. Also, available for purchase are postcards, Christmas cards, notecards, and the Boar’s Head Festival Cookbook filled with cookie recipes.