"God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him."
(1 Jn 4:16)

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Appropriate Attire for Mass

Danielle Bean is discussing Mass attire on her blog, today.

This afternoon, I received information on appropriate attire for Mass in the mail from my parents-in-law. The paper they sent was an insert in their Sunday bulletin, written by their pastor, Fr. Martin Bourke.

The first side is titled, Holy Mass Etiquette. Under the heading, We should remember: number 2 reads, "to dress appropriately" (the emphasis is Fr. Bourke's, not mine).

On the reverse side of the paper, Fr. Bourke writes:
What to Wear, What to Wear
We should wear to Mass what we would wear if a King invited us to his home for a feast. That is, we should wear our best.
Our best should never draw attention to ourselves but give the utmost respect to the King (and His family) of whom we are special guests.
What Not to Wear*
1. Immodest or revealing clothing is never acceptable.
[Examples follow]
But Why?
Immodest dress (especially with women) distracts others and could cause them to sin in their thoughts, which is not why we are at Mass.
2. Dirty clothes are never acceptable.
3. An unkept body is never acceptable (e.g., dirty hands or fingernails).
*There will be times that our only opportunity to attend Mass is after a physically demanding job or after helping Gramma bail out her flooded basement. There is nothing to worry about in such times. We should never let circumstances that are out of our control keep us away from the Sacraments! God knows what we've been through, and it's no one else's job to judge us. By all means, come to Mass!
Still, modest dress is always in our control - if we dress modestly every day, this will never be an issue.


  1. Thanks for posting the guidelines. I have been thinking a lot about what we all should wear to Mass as well. Your post is very helpful to me!

  2. I like that bit at the end, about dirt not always being in our control, but that modesty IS!


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