The Dress Code For Church Has Changed

People used to dress in their “Sunday best” to go to church. These days, priests and preachers complain that it’s more like “Casual Sunday” with worshippers wearing shorts, flip-flops, and racy t-shirts. Church officials don’t necessarily want to require suits and modest dresses, but they’d like the congregation to be a little more respectful. One priest we read about was offering communion, and was mortified when he accidentally dropped the wafer down a woman’s low-cut blouse. Another pastor privately asked a young woman wearing a skimpy sundress to wear something more conservative next time. She and her parents angrily insisted that she could wear what she wanted. So, he asked if they’d mind if he wore a bathing suit and flip-flops at the pulpit, but they called his bluff, and told him to go right ahead. So, why don’t churches institute dress codes? With attendance at record lows, church leaders are reluctant to do anything that might alienate their flock. Instead, they give gentle reminders in emails and mailers like one church that announced, “Sunday’s Britney Spears concert is cancelled, so modest church-going attire will do nicely.” There’s a line between comfortable and inappropriate. And when you’re going to worship, it’s more respectful to put your best foot forward.


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