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The unique job of designing the Pope's vestments

2013-08-03

Theyve been making liturgical garments for the Pontiffs since Pope Paul VI. And they are convinced that during WYD 2013 Pope Francis wore the vestment they gave him as a present.   

MARI CARMEN LATRE 
SORGENTE 
"Each time he is on TV, we try to see if he's wearing our garment. It's hard to tell, since often the images aren't clear enough. But most definitely, it is the one we gave him. At Rio his vestment was often clearly shown by the camera, so we are absolutely sure it was one made by us.” 

The Sorgente store was founded in Rome in 1965. It is managed by consecrated women from the "Vita et Pax” Secular Institute, established during the 1940s by Spaniard Cornelio Urtasun. Their garments are hand made in a workshop at Alboraya, near Valencia in Spain. The style of the vestments they make has often been copied, but at Sorgente they know an original when they see it. 

LEONOR CASIANO 
SORGENTE 
"Our vestments are used everyday in celebrations in the Vatican and in other places. They've really been imitated a lot. I mean, some are well made, some others are just poorly manufactured. But it was us who launched this style. That's a fact.” 

Each vestment requires more than a week to be handmade and prices range between 250 and 1,000 dollars. But each garment is so well-manufactured, it could last a lifetime. 

LEONOR CASIANO
"I would say basically a lifetime. Sometimes a priest comes here and says 'ah, I bought this when I was a student...'"

From Spain and Rome, these consecrated women export liturgical vestments throughout the world, and they are proud to say the Vatican is a returning customer. 


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