Skip to main content

What NOT to Wear

The Vatican has announced that it is enforcing its dress code for visitors.  It's nothing oppressive:  no shorts, women's shoulders need to be covered.  If someone violates it, a Swiss Guard quietly asks them to come back when they are more appropriately attired.

I want to post a Swiss Guard at the entrance of every Catholic church in America.

I know that we are living in an increasingly casual society.  We don't do the whole nylons-gloves-hat thing anymore.  That's okay.  I must ask, though:  isn't there some middle ground between ballgown formal and showing up in the grocery store in your pajamas???????

Yes, there is that inevitable:  "God doesn't care what you wear."  I'm not so sure about that.  Even the biggest slob will agree that the clothes one wears affect how you feel and act.  Most of us behave with more decorum at a business dinner with the boss than at the Saturday morning soccer game.  Certainly, if one was invited to dinner at the White House, the general concensus would be that your old Bud Light t-shirt and some flip-flops wouldn't cut it.

Why do we insist that God doesn't care?  Why is it so hard for us to give Him our best?  Doesn't wearing our best signal to us, to those around us and to God:  "Hey, this is important.  I want to be at my best, physically and spiritually.  I know I'm going before the King of Kings, and I want to enter His Court in a way that is worthy of Him"?  Instead, many of us grab whatever will be most comfortable later on that afternoon on the boat and figure it's good enough. 

Jesus is not any less present in your parish church than He is at St. Peter's and more importantly, He's not any less present in our churches than He is in Heaven, or when He was walking around on earth.  You really want to meet your Lord and Savior wearing THAT?  Don't make the nice Swiss Guard ask you to leave......and look at how nicely that Swiss Guard is dressed.....

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Trying to "end run" God

If you're a football fan, you know what an end run is. From Merriam-Webster:
a football play in which the ballcarrier attempts to run wide around the end of the line We try to "end run" God a lot. I do. I figure I know better. I've got this - no need to worry the Big Guy about such a trivial thing.

Of course, it never works.

Like the puppy above, when we try and evade the tough obstacle (even though we KNOW we will eventually have to do it), we end up - well, off in the bushes.

But oh! How I wished my way worked. I'd love to take a flying leap and land smoothly and gracefully. People would be in awe, as if watching Simone Biles nail a balance beam routine that no one else would even attempt. I would shyly look down and blush - just lightly - and acknowledge (But humbly! Oh so humbly!) my achievement.

But no: I am the one pulling myself out of the bushes, scratches all over my legs and twigs in my hair. I'd hear that gentle but loving voice of God saying, &quo…

Crossing Guard

I saw you
today
as you guided
your little man across that busy street.

You were wearing some
big man boots
and
watching cars and lights.

Your little man had on
black sneakers and
a Mickey Mouse hat
that bounced
as he walked.

He wasn't watching nothing but
your big man boots
and
the white stripes of the crosswalk.

Just before
he got to the sidewalk again,
his step bounced a bit
- he hopped over
a spot where the asphalt broke.

You turned to look,
holding out a hand to
your little man.
Not rushed or angry,
just making sure
he got up
on that sidewalk.

Then you walked on,
in your big man boots,
face into a cold Michigan wind,
with the little man behind,
his hat bouncing.

Be Transfigured

From today's readings: 

Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother, John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the and his clothes became white as light.

...we possess the prophetic message that is altogether reliable. You will do well to be attentive to it as to a lamp shining in a dark place until day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

Today we celebrate the Transfiguration. For whatever reason, Jesus brought three of His disciples to Mount Tabor to witness this miracle. They weren't sure what they were seeing, but they knew enough to throw themselves to the ground in the presence of Almighty God. St. Peter (who never did anything halfway) excitedly declares that he will erect tents on the mountain as a way of memorializing the event. But Jesus tells him and the others that they are not to tell people what they witnessed - at least not yet.

In the second reading, the requirement to be quiet has bee…