THE Catholic Church reminded the faithful to observe the proper dress code, saying they must adore the Lord in proper dress when attending Mass.
Some 50 years ago, veils were once required for women who attend Catholic church masses while men in very presentable Sunday dress, according to the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines.
“Jeans and t-shirts came to be the norm. Most Filipino women lost the veil and dresses gave way to more casual pants suits and even shorts for women which is unthinkable in previous years,” the CBCP said.
Fr. Carmelo Arada of Manila Archdiocese Commission on Liturgy said certain decorum must always be observed for liturgical functions.
“Going to Mass in the parish and going to Mass in the malls must be celebrated with the same disposition, including the attire. Dress properly,” said the priest.
“Masses are celebrated always with dignity, with solemnity, and with devotion,” he told church reporters.
Arada said pushing for the observance of proper attire during the Simbang Gabi Masses in malls was to ensure it would not just be an “extra feature” of commercial establishments.
“We have to instill that the Mass is not an extra feature of the commodities in a mall,” he said.
“It’s like there’s temptation that ‘this is Christmas, we have a sale, and one extra feature is the Simbang Gabi.’ So, we would like to avoid that,” explained Arada.
“The Mass is the highest form of prayer, and it is very different from the other commodities that are material in nature,” he added.
The priest, however, said people dressed improperly would not be prohibited from joining the Mass in the malls.
“But we really encourage them to dress properly,” the prelate added .
Male Catholics are also discouraged from wearing caps, basketball jerseys, tank tops or jersey shorts, and shorts while women are urged to refrain from wearing spaghetti-strap tops or tank tops, short skirts, skimpy shorts or sleeveless shirts with plunging necklines during Mass.