Dressing for Church

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SoCaliLover's picture
Last seen: 1 year 6 months ago
Joined: 12/07/06
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Dressing for Church

I have one question that i have always wondered about Catholic churches in general. Why is it generally acceptable to wear jeans/shorts/whatever when you go to church? Is there a rule on it or not a rule? Is it more a California thing?

I grew up in the South (though not Catholic) which granted is a little more conservative anyway. But we were taught the "Sunday best" and you dressed for church as if you were going to a nice dinner or something, or just looking respectable. I do not think that people have to buy Sunday clothes if they cant afford them and people should be welcome regardless but here in California I am always shocked that people come to church dressed like they are going to the beach in shorts, flip flops, even teens in their pjs. Am I just old world conservative?

Not just kids, adults too. Though we still have some elderly women (and some not so elderly) wearing veils and hats.

With my daughter, we had a no jean rule, period. She could wear a skirt as long as its below her knee, slacks etc. You have NO idea how many fights we got into when her peers showed up in shorts and belly shirts. Now I see kids at mass wearing stuff I wouldn't let my daughter wear out of the house!

My son wears khakis and button downs but he is too young now to give me a hassle about it.

My point of this rambling post Blum 3 is that I know its not about what you wear and its better to be at church regardless of what you are wearing but it does seem odd to me what people wear. Is this just California?

I do note that other churches here in California people are still very dressed. The Jewish synagog down the street from our old house people really dressed up, women in dresses everything. The Methodist church a friend goes to men wear ties and jackets. She asked me why Catholics are so casual and I didn't have an answer.

indianajones's picture
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 01/21/07
Posts: 1486

I don't think it's specifically a Catholic thing. Maybe just regional. We couldn't wear jeans/ holey shirts/etc to church when I was a kid. Now, it's just not one of the rules I've enforced with my own kids. I do try to wear something a little nicer (polo vs tshirt) but am often in jeans and flipflops. My older daughter jumps at any excuse to wear a "fancy" dress, so she dresses up for church every week. Some people at my church dress up and some don't, but I've never noticed it to be an issue or distracting.

Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 04/09/06
Posts: 1244

I have been wearing jeans to church mostly because I dress up for work all week. I do try to dress in nice jeans and nice shirts though. I don't dress as if I am running to the store. I also do my best to wear something other than jeans most of the time. I have been having problems with my foot and have been waiting for more supportive shoes to arrive (I ordered them and they didn't fit, so I had to send them back and order a smaller size) and I had no dress shoes. So, I work jeans to go with the sneakers that I had to wear to support my foot. As to why it is more acceptable, I am not sure, other than our society is becoming more casual. I also think that God does not care what you wear. He cares about your faith and your heart.