We celebrate Priscilla, the tentmaker and co-worker of Paul in art, poetry and music.

Priscilla – Painting by Silvia Dimitrova (2003)

Credit: Priscilla – Painting by Silvia Dimitrova (2003)

Acts 18:1-4 and 24-28

18 After this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. There he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, and, because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them, and they worked together—by trade they were tentmakers. Every sabbath he would argue in the synagogue and would try to convince Jews and Greeks.

24 Now there came to Ephesus a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria. He was an eloquent man, well-versed in the scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the Way of the Lord; and he spoke with burning enthusiasm and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only the baptism of John. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue; but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained the Way of God to him more accurately. 27 And when he wished to cross over to Achaia, the believers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. On his arrival he greatly helped those who through grace had become believers, 28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the scriptures that the Messiah is Jesus.

Romans 16:3-4

Greet Prisca and Aquila, who work with me in Christ Jesus, and who risked their necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.

Priscilla by Graham Kings

Who is this woman,
Pure eyes, profoundly rounded,
Beautiful face, honourably tilted,
Open hands releasing dove?

Who is this man,
Noble head, bearded attractive,
Working hands, intently attentive.
Inclined together, touching love?

Who are these men,
Weighing a letter, ponderingly,
Carrying a scroll, inscrutably,
Trees and windows hovering above?

Four converge on Ephesus,
Silver shrine of Artemis,
Expound the word of God
And form a church at home in love.

Priscilla and Aquila,
Refugees from Roman Emperor,
Host to Paul at Corinth and Ephesus,
Fellow workers in Christ and canvas,
More accurately explain the Way
To the Jew of Alexandria.

Apollos, eloquent and scriptural,
Burning and enthusing,
Knowing now the Holy Spirit,
Crosses over to Corinth
And causes chaos. Perhaps
Composes letter to Hebrews?

Paul writes to church at Corinth,
Settling contending leaders.
Paul sows, Apollos waters,
God gives the growth.
Ironically, rhetorically,
Cross empties eloquence.

Priscilla and Aquila return to Rome,
Hosting the body of Christ in their home.

© Graham Kings, Nourishing Connections (Canterbury Press, 2020).

Also available on

Permissions for Churches to show the paintings.
We encourage churches to use the paintings in PowerPoint presentations.
There is no charge for this, but the copyright wording should be:
‘Priscilla’ by Silvia Dimitrova, commissioned by Alison and Graham Kings. and 

The poems are published with photos of the paintings in ‘Nourishing Connections’, Canterbury Press, 2020.

The CD of the seven anthems is available here:

A 17-minute Fugue State Films video of the world premiere of Tristan’s anthems at St Stephen, Walbrook, London, 14 June 2023, can be seen here: 

Church Times podcast, featuring the project, with interviews with Silvia, Graham and Tristan, may be heard here: