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» Ship of Fools   » Special interest discussion   » Ecclesiantics   » Are young people put off church by vestments? (Page 4)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Are young people put off church by vestments?
Anselmina
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Ooops. Sorry about messing up the penultimate sentence there. It meant to read that St George's is the upper end of the candle of the CofI, in Belfast - indeed across the whole CofI church. And the present rector, an Ulsterman, is very happy to maintain that reputation! He'd probably go higher if he could!

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k-mann
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quote:
Originally posted by stonespring:
Are young people put off church by vestments?

No and yes. And everything in between. 'Young people' is as varied as everyone else.

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Katolikken

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Gramps49
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Is it worth noting the Pope Francis prefers to lead Mass in simple garb--ie an alb and a stole. He is dressed down compared to Pope Benedict.
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Bishops Finger
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Wot? No chasuble?

Is Outrage!

(It seems a little unlikely that he'd celebrate in alb and stole alone - is there photographic evidence?)

IJ

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Augustine the Aleut
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Wot? No chasuble?

Is Outrage!

(It seems a little unlikely that he'd celebrate in alb and stole alone - is there photographic evidence?)

IJ

I saw a film clip of him in alb & stole, but no chasuble. He may have dispensed himself.
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Gee D
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It may have been extremely hot. We were at an Ash Wednesday service at an inland town. Although it was 7.30 or so, the temp was still in the high 30s.
(Celsius). The priest came out beforehand and said he'd not be wearing a chasuble, they were all hot, the Lenten one particularly so. Not only no chasuble, but wring sandals as well. Sensible, practical and had a marvellously timeless look, it could have been 1500 or more years ago, somewhere around the Mediterranean.

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Bishops Finger
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Well, fair enough, and very sensible on a hot day. Very seemly, too - as you say, could be anywhere or anywhen.

[Smile]

IJ

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Wot? No chasuble?

Is Outrage!

(It seems a little unlikely that he'd celebrate in alb and stole alone - is there photographic evidence?)

IJ

I saw a film clip of him in alb & stole, but no chasuble. He may have dispensed himself.
Roman Catholic priests frequently in my experience dispense with the chasuble. Especially Jesuits. So it's no surprise if Papa Francesco does the same.
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Enoch
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These might sound silly questions, but I'd seriously like to know.

1. Is it a requirement of RC canon law that a priest must wear a chasuble to celebrate Mass?

2. If so, I can see that it might matter to a Catholic that the Pope doesn't. But if not, why should that matter or even be of significance?

3. It is not a requirement of CofE canon law that a priest wears one to celebrate. Traditionally few did. Many never do. It is a requirement of CofI canon law that a priest does not wear one. Is it a requirement of any province of the Anglican Communion that a priest does wear one to celebrate, and if so, which one(s)?

4. Is it a requirement of either churches of the Union of Utrecht or the various Lutheran churches that a priest wear one?

5. Now the two clinchers. Why, apart from it's presence or absence being seen by some as a party badge, does it matter so much to some people? (or is that the only reason?) and

6. Is this anything more than the principle I've enunciated on these boards before that if you serve in a Highland regiment, you wear the kilt, but it's none of your business that other regiments don't and you can't complain that they ought to?

[ 02. November 2017, 15:08: Message edited by: Enoch ]

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Emendator Liturgia
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
These might sound silly questions, but I'd seriously like to know.

3. It is not a requirement of CofE canon law that a priest wears one to celebrate. Traditionally few did. Many never do. It is a requirement of CofI canon law that a priest does not wear one. Is it a requirement of any province of the Anglican Communion that a priest does wear one to celebrate, and if so, which one(s)?

Though not a province in its own right - though it often acts as if it is - or should - run the whole Province of Australia - the Diocese of Sydney has since the early 1900s ruled that the chasuble may not be worn - indeed, it requires all new rectors to sign a declaration that they agree not to. Some sort of foolish idea of the chasuble being a sign of sacrifice, and hence against their understanding of penal substitution which lies at the heart of their understanding of the Eucharist. Mind you, it is often hard t describe many clergy in the Diocese as having a good grasp of the sacraments themselves, let alone anything else.

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Augustine the Aleut
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I've just checked in the ACoC canons-- there appears to be nothing referring to vesture. The only possible rule seems to be from the 1959/62 BCP (still the canonical standard) on p.lvi, which reads that "...such Ornaments of the Church and of the Ministers thereof at all times of their Ministrations shall be retained, and be in use, as were in the Church of England by the Authority of Parliament, in the Second Year of the Reign of King Edward the Sixth."

Aside from campfire masses (usually stole over outdoors clothes), I have only ever seen clergy vested at Communion servies, normally with chasuble (although sadly very rarely with maniple), but sometimes in alb and stole, and only very rarely (not since about 1980) with surplice and stole.

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Forthview
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The chasuble is one of the prescribed garments for a Catholic priest celebrating Mass in the Roman rite. The priestly garment ,par excellence, is however the stole.
It doesn't make the Mass any more or any less valid if the priest does not wear a chasuble.
I have often been to Masses where the priest was not wearing a chasuble, sometimes ,but not exclusively, because it was in the warm south.

The present pope likes simplicity and I would not be surprised if he sometimes leaves aside the chasuble. However I cannot imagine him celebrating Mass without a chasuble at a significant public papal event.

I notice that he only wears the papal stole at the moment when he gives a solemn blessing. Many previous popes would wear this stole much more.

I remember a time when a priest came to celebrate Mass wearing a chasuble but not an alb. Of course it looked strange. At the end of the Mass and the priest returned to the sacristy, it was only then that he noticed he was not wearing an alb. He came back into the church and apologized, assuring the faithful that this was not meant to be a new fashion in church apparel.

There is a saying in French ' l'habit ne fait pas le moine' which I think exists in English as 'the habit does not make the monk'.

The wearing of the chasuble by Anglican priests does not make them really any more or less like Catholic priests. It is also the case , I think, that Anglo-Catholic priests recognize the validity of the eucharist celebrated by their low church colleagues, whether there be difference in vesture or in understanding of what the eucharist signifies.

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Bishops Finger
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Forthview said:
quote:
It is also the case , I think, that Anglo-Catholic priests recognize the validity of the eucharist celebrated by their low church colleagues, whether there be difference in vesture or in understanding of what the eucharist signifies.
...as long as the low church colleague isn't a horrid Female of the Opposite Sex....

Apologies for the smell of rotting horseflesh.

Yes, I guess it is indeed the stole that is the principal Mass vestment (though some would argue that that function belongs properly to the maniple), and it is now common in the C of E for the celebrant - be s/he high-ish or low-ish church - to wear alb (or surplice) and stole.

IJ

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Arethosemyfeet
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Anglo-Caatholicism isn't the sole preserve of misogynists. I wouldn't be surprised if Affirming Catholics outnumbered them.
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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by Forthview:
It is also the case , I think, that Anglo-Catholic priests recognize the validity of the eucharist celebrated by their low church colleagues, whether there be difference in vesture or in understanding of what the eucharist signifies.

A key tenet of Anglo=-Catholicism is that the C of E is the catholic church of this land – so all her priests are catholic priests, validly ordained, whatever their church-person-ship.

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ThunderBunk

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
quote:
Originally posted by Forthview:
It is also the case , I think, that Anglo-Catholic priests recognize the validity of the eucharist celebrated by their low church colleagues, whether there be difference in vesture or in understanding of what the eucharist signifies.

A key tenet of Anglo=-Catholicism is that the C of E is the catholic church of this land – so all her priests are catholic priests, validly ordained, whatever their church-person-ship.
That is subject to exactly the same rule as every other statement anyone ever makes about any tenet of the Church of England. The opposite, and most other versions of the statement, is/are equally true.

Dogmatic statements like this and at least one other on this thread merely look foolish.

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Roman Cataholic
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
These might sound silly questions, but I'd seriously like to know.

1. Is it a requirement of RC canon law that a priest must wear a chasuble to celebrate Mass?

2. If so, I can see that it might matter to a Catholic that the Pope doesn't. But if not, why should that matter or even be of significance?

3. It is not a requirement of CofE canon law that a priest wears one to celebrate. Traditionally few did. Many never do. It is a requirement of CofI canon law that a priest does not wear one. Is it a requirement of any province of the Anglican Communion that a priest does wear one to celebrate, and if so, which one(s)?

4. Is it a requirement of either churches of the Union of Utrecht or the various Lutheran churches that a priest wear one?

5. Now the two clinchers. Why, apart from it's presence or absence being seen by some as a party badge, does it matter so much to some people? (or is that the only reason?) and

6. Is this anything more than the principle I've enunciated on these boards before that if you serve in a Highland regiment, you wear the kilt, but it's none of your business that other regiments don't and you can't complain that they ought to?

1. Yes it is.

2. It isn't. Chasubles are omitted for many pastoral reasons. No-one except the most rigid would lose any sleep over it.

3. In the CofE vestments are optional.

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
quote:
Originally posted by leo:
quote:
Originally posted by Forthview:
It is also the case , I think, that Anglo-Catholic priests recognize the validity of the eucharist celebrated by their low church colleagues, whether there be difference in vesture or in understanding of what the eucharist signifies.

A key tenet of Anglo=-Catholicism is that the C of E is the catholic church of this land – so all her priests are catholic priests, validly ordained, whatever their church-person-ship.
That is subject to exactly the same rule as every other statement anyone ever makes about any tenet of the Church of England. The opposite, and most other versions of the statement, is/are equally true.

Dogmatic statements like this and at least one other on this thread merely look foolish.

Surely it is mnore foolish for an Anglican to believe that the eucharists celebrated by his low church colleagues are invalid.

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Utrecht Catholic
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With regard to the use of the Chasuble within the Churces of the Union of Utrecht,the Old-Catholics,it is not a matter of canon law,it is the tradition to wear it at the celebration of the Eucharist.
Its use had also had been continued in the Scandinavian Lutheran Churches after the break with Rome.A Swedish priest told me once that the chasuble is still the tradition,
however I am wondering if it has been laid down in Canon Law,it might be perhaps.
I have said many times to Evangelical Anglicans,that the Chasuble has not any associations with the Eucharistic Sacrifice.
Over the years I have attended many times the Eucharist in English Cathedrals, and I always noticed that the presider wore the Chasuble,the only exception was Liverpool Cathedral.

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by Utrecht Catholic:

Over the years I have attended many times the Eucharist in English Cathedrals, and I always noticed that the presider wore the Chasuble,the only exception was Liverpool Cathedral.

I suspect Bradford is another one. But I have seen the chasuble in use at Liverpool Cathedral ... I don't go there often enough to say whether or not that is now the norm. Percy Dearmer was their liturgical consultant in the early days: perhaps his influence is being felt at last.
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Bishops Finger
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Chasuble, dalmatic, and tunicles at Wakefield Cathedral.

Can't see any maniples, though, so the Mass was clearly Not Valid. [Razz]

And 2 x chasubles, dalmatic, incense, and the eastward position, in the Church of Sweden.

IJ

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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Chasuble, dalmatic, and tunicles at Wakefield Cathedral.

Can't see any maniples, though, so the Mass was clearly Not Valid. [Razz] ...

I'm much more uncomfortable that the altar has not had a proper "fair white linen cloth" laid upon it from the start of the service. Yes, a small cloth seems to have been added by the time of the Eucharistic Prayer, but the top surface of the altar is even then still predominantly bare polished wood. That's fine for Morning or Evening Prayer but not for Communion. Whatever the canonical position, I'm antique enough for it not to feel right.

Is definitely Outrage.

[ 07. November 2017, 22:07: Message edited by: Enoch ]

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Bishops Finger
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Indeed. I hadn't noticed the lack of the fair linen cloth, and the small cloth you refer to is, in fact, a corporal (the Deacon can be seen unfolding it on the altar during the offertory hymn).

An odd omission, given the seemly and edifying nature of the service as a whole - lots of incense, bells, and some proper good hymns.

IJ

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Bishops Finger
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Teenagers in vestments, acting as acolytes etc. during the Eucharist.

They were, I understand, confirmation candidates in a small suburban parish in the Swedish city of Vaxjo.

IJ

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Gramps49
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Teenagers in vestments?

Our acolytes are between ages six and ten. They think it is a high honor to be included in worship

Teenagers? Not so much, though they often stand in as ushers, communion assistants and lay readers.

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Bishops Finger
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Indeed, though it seems to be the custom in Sweden to encourage confirmands to dress up, and to act as acolytes.

They also wear vestments (a sort of alb) for the confirmation service itself, maybe as a reminder of their Baptism?

As here,
with one of the team ministry priests doing the confirming, rather than the Bishop.

IJ

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Enoch
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Are they in vestments, or is that what it's customary for girls to wear for Confirmation in Sweden?

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Bishops Finger
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Well, it's not just girls - there are other videos showing mixed groups - but it does seem to be customary, at least in Sweden. Looks like an alb to me, anyhow, and that's a sort of vestment, no?

As I said, it may be a reminder of the white baptismal gown that used to be traditional (for infants, at any rate) in this country.

IJ

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keibat
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Following on from Bishop's Finger's post:
quote:
Teenagers in vestments, acting as acolytes etc. during the Eucharist.
They were, I understand, confirmation candidates in a small suburban parish in the Swedish city of Vaxjo.

The Church of Finland was, for centuries, part of the Church of Sweden (until Sweden lost Finland to the Russian Empire in 1807). Its centre of eccelesial gravity is noticeably lower than that of Sweden (with a rather Higher-Church tendency among much of the Swedish-language sector in Finland, who have their own Bishop) but there are many continuities. So I reply on the basis of Finnish experience:

1) Confirmation is still taken by at least half the teenage population, and is a significant rite of passage – in a social sense, more than a religious one, in many cases. (Surprise, surprise.)
2) Confirmation is in my experience always carried out by the parish clergy: it is not defined as an episcopal rite.
3) All conf candidates I have ever seen in Norden [=the Nordic countries] wore albs for the occasion,

[Pedantic point, but of considerable importance to Finns and also Icelanders, possibly also Faeroese; 'Scandinavia' is the name of that enormous peninsula that hangs down from the northwest corner of the European landmass and includes Norway and Sweden, plus Denmark bulging up from the northwest corner of Germany. Those three languages (or four) – Danish, Norwegian Bokmål (+ Norwegian Nynorsk), and Swedish – are to a considerable extent mutually comprehensible. Western Nordic, = Faeroese and Icelandic from the North Atlantic, are very significantly different and mutual comprehensibility is much more challenging. (The written languages are much easier for the others to understand than the spoken.)
Finland is on a different bit of landmass, and the language is utterly, utterly different (despite a fair amount of vocabulary borrowing); the Finns are not 'Scandinavian'.
All of these countries, societies, and cultures are 'Nordic', and Norden is a name that includes them all.]

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Bishops Finger
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Thanks for the Finnish perspective, keibat. It's interesting that confirmation is still popular - I recall my own confirmation as a teenager 50 years ago, when the church was packed full with folk from the four local churches. There must have been 30-40 of us from my own parish.

No albs, though!

IJ

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John3000
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This debate reminds of the Preface to the Book of Common Prayer [Smile]

"And whereas in this our time, the minds of men are so diverse, that some think it a great matter of conscience to depart from a piece of the least of their Ceremonies, they be so addicted to their old customs; and again on the other side, some be so newfangled, that they would innovate all things, and so despise the old, that nothing can like them, but that is new: it was thought expedient, not so much to have respect how to please and satisfy either of these parties, as how to please God, and profit them both. And yet lest any man should be offended, whom good reason might satisfy, here be certain causes rendered, why some of the accustomed Ceremonies be put away, and some retained and kept still."

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Enoch
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Back in the 1950s in England I can remember seeing girls wearing plain white head-dresses for Confirmation. I think boys wore ordinary suits. When I was confirmed in the 1960s, it was done at a school which was boys only. So I don't know whether girls still wore them. I haven't seen this since but don't know when it died out, or even whether there are places where it is still done.

I have seen girls dressed for Confirmation more recently rather as though for an RC First Communion, though I don't think this is all that widespread. The white head-dresses I remember were quite different in style..

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Bishops Finger
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I, too, was confirmed in the 1960s, in church, but I can't recall any of the girls wearing any form of white head covering.

All our local churches were very Low Church - well beneath the floorboards - so was the white head-dress perhaps more of a High Church (or even Roman Catholic) custom?

Welcome aboard, by the way, John3000 - that extract from the BCP applies quite well to Ecclesiantics, as you have already noticed.... [Two face]

IJ

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L'organist
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# 17338

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Confirmed in my home parish in the 1960s.

Almost all the girls wore white dresses (knee-length, no mini-skirts), the boys mostly school uniform.

Boys were told not to use any Brylcreem or other styling product; girls had white cotton veils from front of head to at least the waist at the back, which were pinned in place by members of the Mothers Union.

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Pigwidgeon

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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
I, too, was confirmed in the 1960s, in church, but I can't recall any of the girls wearing any form of white head covering.

All our local churches were very Low Church - well beneath the floorboards - so was the white head-dress perhaps more of a High Church (or even Roman Catholic) custom?
IJ

I was confirmed in 1963, snake-belly low church -- but all the girls wore white veils.

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Enoch
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# 14322

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Yes, we had the instruction about no Brylcreem. Does anyone use it these days?

Does anyone know when the white veils died out, or whether there is anywhere that girls are still expected to wear them?

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Jengie jon

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Sure you are not mixing up First Communion with confirmation?

Jengie

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Angloid
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# 159

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quote:
Originally posted by Jengie jon:
Sure you are not mixing up First Communion with confirmation?

Jengie

In the C of E (and probably other Anglican churches) until recently, Confirmation and First Communion went together. I don't know when the tradition of white dresses and veils started, but it was certainly almost universal in the 'Lancashire Low' parishes on the fringes of the Liverpool (and I guess Manchester) dioceses at the end of the last century; very likely it still lingers in places. Like the Whit Walks, it was probably motivated by the desire to keep up with the Catholics who are very strong, if not a majority, in those parts.

Now that children and others are being encouraged to receive communion before confirmation, I wonder if the dressing up will be transferred to 'first communion' or if it will be just quietly dropped.

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L'organist
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Jengie
Not, not first communion, just confirmation: bishop, laying-on of hands, Defend, O Lord, this thy child etc.

Brylcreem was not permitted because it would make the bishop's hands sticky.

Angloid
Actually until pretty recently the tad CofE practice was to have confirmation as an entirely separate thing from making one's first communion. Saturday or Sunday afternoons were the norm so that Godparents could get to the service, which usually took no more than an hour and was followed by TEA.

The other thing was that the bishop came to the parish (unless very small, in which case maybe two/three neighbouring parishes would take it in turns to 'host' the confirmation) rather than making everyone schlep to the cathedral before enduring the current Supermarket Sweep style confirmations which take forever - my own children's confirmation took over 3 hours and was slightly less personal than the opening of a new ball-bearing factory in, say, Omsk.

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Zappa
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# 8433

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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
Yes, we had the instruction about no Brylcreem. Does anyone use it these days?


A tangent, but Brylcreem had a marketing opportunity a few years back when male yoofs were opting in to hair gels in spades. Yet it seemed to miss the boat, and mobs like Vo5 and Schwarzkopf seized the day ... products (that being a Word With Weight™ ) ... that I note amongst my sons' collections include gems like "Shock Waves Free Style Gel (tag line "Have Your Play your Way" [Eek!] ) and Dominate Nitro Cement (more prosaic, with "No Parabens, No Phthalates, No Animal Testing" but on the B-side the added suggestion "Rocket fuel your look with our hardest hold Nitro Cement-construct, define then Dominate"*) ...

to redirect the tangent may I suggest that the poor Holy Spirit has little chance of penetrating such product?

At any rate, my sons take far longer to get ready in the mornings than my daughters ever did, and despite being PKs would not have a clue what confirmation was, so are unlikely to take veil or male equivalent** any time. (Younger son gave up attending when we moved to the church without walls in the tropics, and a woman whisked his hat off saying "we don't wear hats in church." He opted for the hat thereafter).

*In future years Pfizer Laboratories might steal that sentence to market Viagra ...

** the mind boggles

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Bishops Finger
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# 5430

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What is this 'hair' thing of which you speak?

But, as L'organist says, time was when Confirmation was a distinctly separate service (IIRC, mine was on a weekday evening), with various parishes attending. First Communion was often made, without ceremony, at the next available service (usually 8am on the following Sunday).

The only vestments worn (to get back to the OP) were those of the Bishop (rochet, chimere, etc.), and the presenting clergy (cassock, surplice, and Black Scarf - none of that High Church coloured stole nonsense in our neck of the woods).

We seem to have got onto a bit of a tangent. I reckon that any teenagers presenting themselves for Confirmation these days, whatever their church background, are unlikely to be fazed by any sort of vestment worn by the Bishop or clergy.

IJ

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Albertus
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# 13356

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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
...Brylcreem was not permitted because it would make the bishop's hands sticky...

[Tangent] There's a story in, I think, Aubrey's Brief Lives, of a rather louche C17 bishop about to confirm a bald man, calling to his chaplain 'A little dust, here, please'.

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Forthview
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# 12376

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In a number of countries with a widespread Catholic tradition First Communion has been for centuries an important rite of passage.Particularly for girls dresses etc had reached a giddy limit which bishops and priests did not and do not want to encourage.
In the Latin countries of France,Spain and Italy First Communion ceremonies are now replaced by a ceremony called Solemn Communion which is made at about the age of 14.
In France,at least, the prescribed dress is a white alb for both boys and girls.You will often see in photographers's shops photos of young people wearing these garments.

(The first Communion is made privately without great ceremony.The traditional ceremonies are those which were brought into being in Counter Reformation times by German Jesuits,precisely to encourage youngsters to come to Communion).

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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Returning to the OP, I think YP are put off church by the same things as the middle aged - the feeling it's mostly full of elderly God-botherers.

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Albertus
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# 13356

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And that might well put off some older people too.

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leo
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# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Chasuble, dalmatic, and tunicles at Wakefield Cathedral.

Oh happy memories - I used to go there regularly in the 1970s when it was much higher in churchmanship.

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Enoch
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# 14322

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quote:
Originally posted by Jengie jon:
Sure you are not mixing up First Communion with confirmation?

No, definitely not. Confirmation did not necessarily coincide with a Communion Service. We were confirmed on a Saturday afternoon. Most of us took Communion at 8 am the next morning, as was the virtually universal practice in those days, but as the Confirmation was in the autumn, one or two people waited until Christmas.

It was recommended in those days that one should aspire to communicate monthly, as in Betjeman's famous poem about the Death of King George V + at the key festivals.

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georgiaboy
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# 11294

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I was confirmed in 1960 in an A-C TEC parish near Chicago. There was a sizeable class of kiddos (3rd graders) and about 20 adults. All the females wore white veils provided by the parish, with IIRC white dresses for the children's class but not the adult women.

Saturday afternoon stand-alone confirmation service from the TEC 1928 BCP, followed by Benediction (of course!)

Don't remember any cautions about Brylcreem, but we were warned about the 'buffett,' ie, the bishop slapping each candidate on the cheek.

The bishop's chair was placed in front of the high altar, on the top step, and it was tricky backing down the 3 steps, because one could not, after all, turn one's back on the bishop.

It seems a VERY long time ago!

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Enoch
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# 14322

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quote:
Originally posted by georgiaboy:
... Don't remember any cautions about Brylcreem, but we were warned about the 'buffett,' ie, the bishop slapping each candidate on the cheek. ...

I assume that's a joke to frighten people, like Evelyn Waugh's sacred monkeys in the Vatican, and not some weird transatlantic custom.

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
And that might well put off some older people too.

Well yes, but there's a serious underpinning to my comment - people are in the main put off by not being interested in religion - and generally speaking, the younger they are, the less they're interested.

The Charevos kept on promising me that revival - by which they meant lots of people becoming charevos - was just around the corner. 1988 was going to be a big year (40 years from the establishment of the state of Israel - this was relevant for some reason that escapes me now) but the reality was, and is, decline.

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