We are temporal, as well as spiritual- and what we physically see and do can contribute towards what we do and experience internally
I have become used to wearing pants Sunday and Monday but am definately about to change both my attitude and my apparal for the better, both at church and outside it.
I do agree that we are fighting against a culture that dresses far to casually for almost everything. It was disappointing recently to see a father come to the front of the church dressed in jeans, a polo shirt and sneakers for his child’s baptism. If people aren’t going to get dressed up for that, they won’t get dressed up for anything. I also wonder if it would be a nice idea for migrant areas to have a dress-up swap, where people can bring outgrown dress clothes (the only kind my boys don’t wear out at the knees!) and allow anyone who can use them to take them home. My kids, influenced by our casual culture, do try to argue about clothing for Sunday Mass. I’ll print out Monsignor’s list for them to read. It’s always good for a single mom to have backup!
Two more little points – I was at the Stations prayed in Latin a few years ago. Everyone who attended got very dressed up because we felt that was expected at anything prayed in Latin! It was nice seeing everyone dressed so respectfully, but it occurred to me that it would be sad if someone happened by that church in casual clothes and didn’t stop in to honor Jesus by praying Stations, because they felt their (modest) clothing was unacceptable. The same for visits to Jesus – we don’t want to set up church as a place you can only go if you’re very dressed up. I also learned that as I tried to dress more nicely for Mass, I became judgemental about others in Church, especially as I saw them going up to Communion. Thankfully, I was inspired with the best solution – I close my eyes and visit with Our Lord after receiving Him! Should have been obvious, I know!
Sharon, what is achieved by dressing up? Do I go to heaven more quickly? Do I not pay attention in mass because I am uncomfortable? I didn’t shave today so should I stay home? I guess I should switch to a different religion since I’m looked down upon and considered not as “holy” as those that dress up. Funny, there was a man that dress up every Sunday for mass. He wore a suit and was active with his church. This man was a womanizer and hit upon my conservative wife when she would attend that church. I guess it doesn’t matter because he wore a suit. I’m the bigger sinner because I’m faithful to my wife and I wear jeans to church.
Do I skip mass because I do not have the right apparel?
AJ- you are totally missing the point of the article. Your argument sounds the same as all of the feminist nuns of the 70’s and 80’s who got rid of their habit. Now, most of those congregations are dying out. What we wear does say something. Wearing a suit does not necessarily make someone holy, but it can act as a reminder as to the purpose for which someone wears it. To say that the material doesn’t matter sounds rather Gnostic to me.
AJ, Mass is not about comfort. It is about remembering the ultimate sacrifice that Jesus made when he was willingly crucified to take away our sins. Mass is about rejoicing in the fact that through the power, mercy, and love of God, Jesus rose from the dead so that we are able to have salvation.