Special

The dress code

Jun 3, 2016

It was the 15th of August- the feast of The Assumption of our Lady and our Independence Day. I was attending Mass in a renowned church and as I sat in the pew, lo and behold! All I saw was a bare back stare back! A young girl, barely 18 had worn - brace yourselves - a halter-neck top for Mass. 

Some independence, huh? I had the fortune of glimpsing at her bare back all Mass long!! My only thoughts were as to where were the girl’s parents as she dressed up and started for church. I was at Mass next Sunday. As a girl entered and knelt, the ladies on either side of her looked at each other and smiled.

The old lady sitting in the row behind her was continuously looking at the kneeling girl. It was then that I realised why they were reacting the way they were. Suddenly I saw it- her pink undergarments peeked out of her pair of jeans. As amused as I was, the older ladies surely weren’t. On a more serious note, I couldn’t help but think over it even as the girl tried in vain to awkwardly tug at her t-shirt. What if some men were sitting behind her? Older men would probably choose to overlook it, pretend they didn’t see; young kids would giggle and young men would try not to look maybe. But one thing is for sure- it would attract and distract everyone. Does one need this at church or any other place of worship for that matter, is the question.

Fashion is all good and looking pretty certainly isn’t a crime, but it is secondary at Mass. Everyone’s wardrobe contains casual wear and occasional wear. People never confuse one for the other. People never turn up at weddings or parties looking like they dressed for a picnic, or for an interview, dressed for a wedding. There are theme parties and more often than not, people stick to the theme. When we stick to a code made by only man, why then do we throw all caution to the winds when it comes to dressing for church? Perhaps the prophet Mohammad foresaw these cons and prevented women from entering mosques with men.

What people have forgotten is that there is a time and place for everything, especially when dressing for church. We need to keep in mind that the Christmas or Easter celebration is not just that- a celebration. It is Holy Mass. Young people, especially girls, get new dresses fit to be worn to parties and discotheques, not for Mass. Or have we forgotten the distinction between the two? It is a growing trend nowadays even for brides to wear revealing wedding gowns to their nuptial Mass for the Sacrament of Matrimony. It makes me wonder if it’s all part of foreplay!! And her maids just follow her footsteps. Everything just gets skimpier by the day with strapless, backless and mindless dressing. Revealing clothes are not in the least appropriate for Mass. With all our education if we cannot seem to know this fact, then which way are we progressing?

Parents play a significant role in moulding their children’s dress sense, telling them what is decent and appropriate for Mass. Adolescents are old enough to think for themselves and surely don’t need guidance in this. So next time at the holy Mass, can we all expect people to remember the time and the place?

Hanita Pinto - from archives:

by Hanita Pinto
Hanita Pinto has a masters in law from SDM Law College and has been in Mangalore ever since her wedding in May 2012. She has earlier worked in Bangalore as a legal compliance officer.

Comment on this article

  • Sr. Shanthi Lewis, Kundapur, Nellrore AP

    Fri, Jun 10 2016

    Its a very good and an eye opener article for all those having clothes and dressing them properly at least when they visit the places of Worship.All of us go to Church for worship and prayer and not for Fashion Parade. Bring this aspect to the notice of Church authorities.

    Agree [12]

  • alex, mangalore

    Thu, Jun 9 2016

    Very good article,I totally agree with the author on the need of dressing modestly in the church ,bible also very clear on the need to be modestly dressed and our community has a large role to play on it be it the parents ,teacher ,elders or the religious ,the religious need to sermonise on these things at least 20 out of 100 may heed ,keeping quiet fearing backlash wont help.Church is a holy place and the dignity of place to be maintained with our words and deeds .Keep writing sister atleast a few will be transformed reading your article and try to become better christians and that is worth the effort.

    Agree [8]

  • savitha pereira, mangalore

    Thu, Jun 9 2016

    Hanita,

    Very Good article by you. Very meaningful hope our catholic community learns something from this article. Awaiting many more write ups from you.

    Agree [8]

  • Jennifer,

    Wed, Jun 8 2016

    I agree with Charlotte.

    Agree [6]

  • R.Bhandarkar, Mangaluru

    Mon, Jun 6 2016

    Madam Hanita...
    That's the whole point. To bring a smile to everybody's lips.
    A very meaningful article by you here and I am of the view point, that it should cut across community lines during holy gatherings.
    Agree that there's a time and place for everything.

    Agree [27]

  • Elvira, Mumbai

    Mon, Jun 6 2016

    Just a thought, if all other religions can know how to respect their faith then why do we Catholics not understand, why do we have to say that the world is modernized, we cannot change people's thinking etc etc, why do we find excuses, should this respect not come from our hearts? I see many many non catholic women coming to holy places like Tabor Ashram in Kalyan Mumbai, they are so decently dressed and they cover their heads too, then why do our Catholics cannot understand this!!!!

    Agree [21]

  • Avith, Shamboor

    Mon, Jun 6 2016

    Thank you for great write up
    the really Christians, who know about bible they aware of dress code toooo

    Agree [21]

  • Hanita Pinto, Mangalore

    Mon, Jun 6 2016

    I would like to thank everyone for all the wonderful comments and opinions. I really appreciate them.


    P.S.: R.Bhandarkar, your comment really brought a smile on my face (the glasses are Fastrack, easily available in stores!!)

    Agree [14]

  • Rems, Mangaluru

    Mon, Jun 6 2016

    Mangalorean Catholics are a misguided lot. They speak broken english with their own children at home and claim this helps them get jobs ! In the church they show their bare backs possibly to indicate they are modern and not 'jangli' like the rest of the people.

    Agree [29]

  • sam, world

    Sun, Jun 5 2016

    @Richie, udupi
    - People must be reminded and rebuked when they sin and they must repent. Pray to Our Lord and Our Lady for the graces.
    - Blaming modern ills and behaviors is not an excuse to stay idle and allow sin to continue. People throughout history have always revolted against God. We have to follow Christ, not the other way around.
    - Priests, Parents and anyone above the age of reason stand guilty if they mock God and think He is not watching this behavior.
    - Matthew 26:11 “Watch ye, and pray that ye enter not into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh weak.”

    Agree [15]

  • Dr. T.A.KoshyMangalore,

    Sun, Jun 5 2016

    Jesus Christ rose from dead on His own accord and hence the word ascension. Virgin Mary was taken up to heaven by God and hence the word assumption is used in her case of resurrection.

    Agree [8]

  • ozzie, bendore

    Sun, Jun 5 2016

    Very nice and true article. thanks Hanita, Good it came from a Female. Many a times we men are ashamed to see or speak to the girls who are least dressed. May the Almighty enlighten the minds of the girls who wish to go the His house semi naked. And please don't blame priests, I have personally witnessed more than once the mothers of the girls came and fought with priests for commenting the dress of their daughters. during the young age parents dress their babies with similar dress and how one can expect the same grown up girl to cover her body?

    Agree [29]

  • Richie, udupi

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    It is easy to raise voice and point finger at the priest or people responsible to stop this cheap display of flesh, only the mind set of an indivisual can change this and in today's world where all this is easily accessible no one will be able to stop this, there is will be only division groups etc one for and one against, if the priest forces some rules there will be a revolt group who will call them modern and the priest will have no cooperation from them, and these things are hard to change, look around all churches around during the Gulf holiday season the fun start parents with shorts, and T Shirts with all unwanted wording children playing around with chocolate and biscuits in their to eat when the feel bored and sitting right in front to distract the rest of the congregation and going in and out the children want to go for a nautures call all this is the mind set which has to change or only god can change, our religion doesn't provide policing or force to their faith fulls they themselves have to change hope and pray they do.

    Agree [16]

  • Dr. T.A.Koshy, vas lane,Mangalore.

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    I fully agree with the views of Mrs. Pinto.In church people shuold come decently dressed.They should not distract others.
    Virgin Mary was taken up to heaven by God-hence we say assumption of Mary. Whereas, jesus rose from the dead-hence the term ascension is used.Jesus's dead body was never sen by anyone after putting inside the garden tomb and closure of tomb with a giant stone wheel. On Easter morning the stone was found rolled away. But the burial cloth(Sindon/Othonia) were left behind. These are in existence today at Turin and Oviedo. They have been submitted to numerous scientific studies and proven authentic. Veronica's veil with figure of Jesus face is also in existence-at monastery of Manoppello.
    Most of the apostles were witness to Mary's death. They knew where she was buried. But three centuries later at orders of emperor Marcian when the tomb was opened her skeletons were not found. Besides there have been apparitions of Mary in many places (lady of Fatima, lourde, Veilamkanni, Guadaluppe)

    Agree [16]

  • C D Souza , Kuloor

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    people go to church to pray. But sadly they look everything including undergarments and their colour. It happened to be pink here. The writer was not just looking at girl but even those sitting on the other side and nearby. It is easier to preach than follow. And why bring parents here when grown ups know what they are doing. Either people are jealous or they want to pretend they are too religious. Such religious people should not be affected by silly distractions because it is all in the mind. What u say Bhandumaam.

    Agree [12]

  • Anp, Blur

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Food for thought....
    God did not create man and women fully clothed !
    Why ?

    Agree [16]

  • sam, world

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    @Anp, Blur
    - Before you assume and start doubting, please read Munificentissimus Deus.

    Agree [5]

  • Juliana, udupi

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Thankfully nobody wear leaves around and come to church to provoke the weak. For some full covered dress suites well like the author but for others it is very hot.

    Agree [4]

  • Esther, Mumbai

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Its the bane of our Catholic Community. Church only asks us dress decently and come to church in decent clothes. Not to a fashion parade. In Mumbai, if one comment about the obscene dresses worn, you sure to get a quick retort, that it is my God's house also. Its we mothers who have to guide and support the young girls.

    Agree [16]

  • THERESA LOBO, MUKAMAR,SHARJAH

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Now a days people dress up looking at Internet. Everything is available on the Internet. Children does not care where are they heading whether to church or party Even Parents do not advise because the modern children they do not listen. It is better the Priest should announce in the Church in every Mass for the Dress code while coming to church so that people can concentrate during Mass and Pray for each other. Good Article. Must put in Practice.

    Agree [20]

  • jones, manipal

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Well written. In Kerala there very strict instructions give. Here it is not so. I hope at least Churches will not be a place for guys or girls to show off their body parts, and attract or make others look at them with lust.

    Agree [12]

  • Elvira, Mumbai

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Ms Juliana, Udupi: this msg if for you you say we go to church to see God and not around agree mam, but what about Jesus Christ's word in Matthew 18:6 "As for whoever causes these little ones who believe in me to trip and sin, it were better for him to that a millstone were hanged about his neck and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea, so mam Ms Juliana! Please understand Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of God, I suggest please read the Holy Bible.

    Agree [13]

  • Vinod, Mangalore

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Finally this topic ! Thanks Hanita.
    Even I keep wondering when I see such dressing "don't they have anybody at home or they don't have a mirror"
    It all depends on where they draw the line. Youngsters love trendy dresses. But if it's display of their body they cannot deny that they are displaying it so that others see..comment..distract etc....
    At least spare the place of worship where people come for peace and their spiritual needs not distractions .

    Agree [19]

  • Juliana, udupi

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    It is not dress but mind set of people. In the church you see God on the Alter not around. Why observe what others do inside church when you go to pray?

    Agree [17]

  • Elvira, Mumbai

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Hi Anthony, highly appreciate the suggestion put up by you, worth implementing, high time something is done to stop this evil.

    Agree [16]

  • Elvira,

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Hanita, one more comment from my side, thank u Daijiworld for displaying my comment and yeah Hanita just like you there are two more people who have raised their voices in the magazine published by St Jude's Shrine Jhansi,'Voice of St Jude' it is worth reading and very thought provoking, they too have raised their opinion about immodest dressing in churches, congratulations dear, I consider you as a real soldier of God who has the guts to raise her voice even when most of the church leaders are silently witnessing this nonsense each year and at each Christian festival in our churches. My prayers are with you that you may have many more people to help you spread this message and eradicate this evil of immodest dressing in churches, wish and pray that a display board outside all churches is put up so that such females before entering the church are reminded to go back home if they are immodesty dressed.

    Agree [23]

  • Antony Cony D Souza, Karkala / Qatar

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Hi Jossie J. Mangaluru, you are partly right and party wrong.

    In practice, none of the priests discourages the dress codes.

    However, if the Parish Priests are really strict notice boards and ushers can play a greater role who are authorized by the Parish Priests itself to implement the Church Will upon the worshippers. As simple as that can be, at the entrance of the church, ushers may politely remind such violators.

    Due to such objective approaches, greater spontaneous results have been witnessed among the churches in Doha.

    You have succeeded in conveying a wonderful message. Thanks and Best of Luck Hanita Pinto.

    Agree [21]

  • Jossie J. Cabralla, M'lore

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    It is a trend now...Only one in million react. Not even priests or church committee seriously... Who does not like treat to eyes !. Oh! God forgive me saying this for your Place.

    Agree [17]

  • peter lewis, Brahmavar

    Sat, Jun 4 2016

    Area where the church fails to implement the strict dress code where it is clearly written in the Bible how your dress should be.

    Agree [17]

  • Elvira, Mumbai

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    God Bless You Hanita for bringing this topic of the rising sickness of immodest dressing by females in churches. All these years I always wondered why priests in many many churches were silent about this topic, sermons about all issues are preached except this one! Just like you I have also come across such semi clad females in church and wondered what has been their motive to expose so much during holy mass. Ash Wednesday begins with mourning and so does Good Friday and then Easter mid night mass you find women exposing so much. 

    Wish your article is taking up seriously by leaders in churches if they truly respect and venerate our Blessed Mother Mary.

    Agree [20]

  • Lorna DAlmeida, Dubai, UAE,

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    I disagree with people who say it doesn’t matter how you dress when you go to church. It matters because your dress says something about who you are, and how you dress does impact others around you.
    Dress with respect, respect for yourself, respect for others, respect for God.

    Agree [43]

  • sam, world

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    The role model for women is the Blessed Mother Mary and for men is St. Joseph. Until people come to Our Lord and Our Lady and Council Vatican II recants its errors, more spiritual damage is in store.

    Agree [17]

  • Anp, Blur

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    BARE FACTS ,
    Assumption was declared on 15th August 1950. Before that there was no assumption that is why it is called assumption .....assuming ,check if in doubt.

    Agree [18]

  • JOHN DSOUZA, Mumbai

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    Very well written article. Nowadays all want to show their body.
    I would like to tell if priest in their respective churches get some dress code for woman. If ladies feel awarkward. Then what would be the reaction of guys they will be completely distracted during the mass. I think the bishop need to look in to this or send a circular to all churches regarding the dress code. Hope someone look into this seriously.

    Agree [21]

  • Charlotte, Mangalore

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    Wonderful write up Mrs.Pinto.
    Its high time to bring this awareness in the catechesim curriculum ..what do you say..?

    Agree [29]

  • R.Bhandarkar, Mangaluru

    Fri, Jun 3 2016

    Hmmmm..
    Wondering where Hanita got those dark glasses from?
    Wanna buy.....

    Agree [19]

Leave a Comment

Title : The dress code


 
 
 
 

 
You have 2000 characters left.

Disclaimer:

Please write your correct name and email address. Kindly do not post any personal, abusive, defamatory, infringing, obscene, indecent, discriminatory or unlawful or similar comments. Daijiworld.com will not be responsible for any defamatory message posted under this article.

Please note that sending false messages to insult, defame, intimidate, mislead or deceive people or to intentionally cause public disorder is punishable under law. It is obligatory on Daijiworld to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments, to the authority concerned upon request.

Hence, sending offensive comments using daijiworld will be purely at your own risk, and in no way will Daijiworld.com be held responsible.


Security Validation

Enter the characters in the image