By Tracy Simmons
The Shower of Stoles project began in the mid 1990s when Presbyterian minister Martha Juillerat was faced with the threat of being defrocked by the church it was discovered she was a lesbian.
She and her partner, also a Presbyterian minister, asked friends and colleagues to send a stole to hang at a presbytery meeting. According to the Shower of Stoles website, the couple received 80 stoles overnight. Stoles have been coming in ever since, along with cards and letters.
Now the Shower of Stoles Project (which includes other sacred items representing LGBT people of faith) tours constantly around the country, being exhibited in local congregations, universities and seminaries, and regional and national denominational gatherings.
An online peak at the exhibit is available here.