Eagle Lecterns date back to early Church history. The symbolism of the eagle derived from the belief that the bird was capable of staring into the sun and that Christians similarly were able to gaze unflinchingly at the revelation of the divine word. The eagle was believed to be the bird that flew highest in the sky and was therefore closest to heaven, and symbolised the carrying of the word of God to the four corners of the world.
The eagle is the symbol used to depict John the apostle, whose writing is said to most clearly witness the light and divinity of Christ. The eagle is usually depicted with the world grasped firmly in its talons.
The eagle is one of the four “living creatures” around Gods throne (Revelation 4:7). There are 32 references to eagles in the Bible. The inscription on the eagle lectern reads:-
‘To the Glory of God and in
memory of Henry Goodwin, Vicar
This Lectern was presented by the
parishioners of Middlewich 1877’
The Pulpit was given to the Church by the family of Mary Lees Kay after her death in 1937. The wooden carved pulpit stands on a stone plinth which is inscribed with the following:-
IN MEMORY OF
MARY LEES KAY
AND HER SON
JOHN ARTHUR RICKARDS KAY
BY THEIR FAMILY
Mary served as Vice President & Commandant of Ravenscroft Hospital, Middlewich during the First World War. Recruited in 1914, she served the hospital till her termination from her position in 1919. Mary was an unpaid volunteer working 8 hours a day, working a total of 6200 hours during her service(1). As reward for her hard work and dedication she was awarded an O.B.E. in the 1919 New Year Honours.
“The Middlewich Branch of the Red Cross Society was behind many events raising funds local, initially helping to raise funds for Belgian refuges in 1914. A shop opened in Middlewich, Hightown under the guidance of Mrs Kay of Ravenscroft Hall. Teams of knitters were engaged for helping soldiers overseas, as well as fundraising exhibitions, events, competitions and coffee evenings. When Brunner Mond offered the new clubhouse in Brooks Lane for the Red Cross Society to use as a hospital, attentions turned to raising much needed funds to run it.” (2).
Mary was married to Christopher Kay (b 1826–d 1907) who was Chairman of the School Governing Body for Sir John Deane’s Grammar school in Northwich from 1895 until his death in 1907(3).
Christopher Kay along with Col. C H France-
Family ties with the France-
Winfred Kay (youngest daughter of Christopher and Mary) married Major Gordon R. Macnab 2nd Battalion Gordon Highlanders in Knightsbridge(6).
Mary is buried at St Wilfreds Church in Davenham. The inscription reads:-
June 14 1907 age 81
Also Mary LEES KAY, his widow,
born June 14 1863 died June 11 1937
Also John A Kay.
May 7 1934 age 54
See page dedicated to Red Cross for service card.
(2) Taken from the book, Middlewich 1900-
(3) A History of Sir John Deane's Grammar School, Northwich, 1557-
(6) Call to Arms By Alan Lowe (page 93)