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This room is for discussion related to learning about the faith (Catechetics), defense of the Faith (Apologetics), the Liturgy and canon law, motivated by a desire to grow closer to Christ or to bring someone else closer.

Saint Augustine of Hippo is considered on of the greatest Christian thinkers of all time and the Doctor of the Church.
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Jul 8th 2014 new
Hi Aline.Welcome to the Forums! wave
Jul 8th 2014 new
Clothing or the lack of does tempt people of both sex's to look. Keeping one's mind out of the gutter is a different story. It is call self control and a conscious. I am sorry, but into days world a women wearing clothing covered from head to toe is to me scary. 30 yrs ago it would not have made a difference, but in the age of terrorism,......................
Jul 10th 2014 new
God is at all times universal, but human opinions are not. Look at the polls on this site, we are all Catholic, but we come from different places. A wise priest once put it this way: "It is as if each of us humans each lived on a mountaintop.you have a point of view, you have a point of view, I have a point of view, but in this round world ONLY GOD has the total view." I am in awe of the God greater than myself, I can't have the whole perspective. I know in some parts of God's world modesty means clothing that covers most of the body, and other parts of the world it means something quite different. I daily pray the Lord's prayer, "lead us not into temptation.." to mean both that I not tempt others inappropriately or am tempted inappropriately; with the Spirit's guiding the way to righteousness..
Jul 26th 2014 new
(quote) Hope-1049882 said: This thread is pretty cerebral and I love it...I'm more of a "know it when I see it" person and I have to say, the Eucharistic minister offering the chalice at Mass yesterday made my eyes pop with wonder. NOTHING was left to the imagination and the chest area was completely exposed, with the dcolletage plunging right down to ... Well, I'm not going to be immodest by giving too much detail. Speaking from the gut, I have to say I was mortified. I chose to go to the right instead of the left, where she was standing. I felt for all the men -- married ones trying to be faithful husbands, the single ones who are trying presumably to be chaste, the adolescents and the priests -- it just seemed so wrong. I really wanted to say something to someone...but to whom? It would be an awkward thing to address to the person herself and turns into one of those "Who am I to judge?"situations that I feel caught up in when faced with a moment like this. I am thinking of bringing it up with Father, and also inquiring whether the diocese has/might issue guidelines onmodesty in Eucharistic ministers' attire. But that circles around to the point of this thread, which is "where is the line"?

I liked what a friend said about the notice her priest put in the summer bulletin: something about remembering you're at Mass, not the beach ..... I wish our Newman Center bulletin would run something like that!




Thanks for your comment Hope. I cant agree with you more. I wish we had many Fulton Sheen at all parishes around the world. His openness, his boldness to convey the message, and his critical thinking of what was not right moves me to date. Have a blessed week end!
Jul 26th 2014 new
(quote) Bernard-2709 said: Hi Aline.Welcome to the Forums!
Hi Bernard. God bless you!
Jul 26th 2014 new
(quote) Tony-1031677 said: I was going to search in the forum for this but there is no way to search, hence a new post to make everyone happy and mad about each other's opinions on modesty.

People have pointed out there are cultural considerations in defining what is modest. Well, the example used most that I have seen is people in Africa that wear very little even when they go to Mass because that's what they wear, is not immodest there but would be very immodest to us in the developed world. Besides that, I don't know of other places where the normal fashion would be immodest to us.

People also point out environment circumstances, too. Obviously, beach/pool vs. not beach/pool. The summer when it is hot outside.

One reason why it is important to dress modestly is to not cause scandal and tempt another to sin through objectifying you or imagining you as only something to use.

I think it is easy to agree on some clothing that is always immodest: Yoga pants/leggings all exposed, bikini, speedo for men, extremely short shorts for women (men don't wear them as far as I know), skintight shirts/tops, and cleavage revealing shirts/dresses.

Now for questions for the community to answer, and if you have reasons, I hope you include WHY you draw the lines where you do.

1. Where do you draw the line to say that women's shorts or dress/skirt length are modest and not immodest?

2. If a swimsuit is considered modest, does clothing covering an equal amount of skin in a different environment than the beach/pool also deserve to be called modest, even if it's exposing a lot of legs and shoulders?

3. Assuming we agree revealing cleavage is immodest, how much, if any, of a woman's shoulders/neck may be exposed and still be called modest? Does it make a difference if it is a fancy dress or a tank top or spaghetti strap top?

4. Jeans: they cover the legs entirely. There are definitely super tight jeans that would be immodest like yoga pants. Yet most jeans for women are not super tight, but still are form-fitting without any bagginess. Do you think the normal jeans and other form-fitting, not-baggy pants that women wear are appropriate?

I look forward to hearing what you fellow Catholics think! As of now, I myself answer my own questions as follows. Still, others might be able to persuade me to shift my views.
1. I am actually undecided about shorts. Too short is too short, but I also have the thought, "What's so bad about exposing a little more leg, something both men and women have and know how it looks?" The middle thigh is just like the lower thigh, just higher. On the other hand, I think skirts should at least drop down to the top of the knees.
2. No, an equal amount of clothing is not modest in a different environment because environment does matter.
3. I am undecided. My friend that I think cares about modesty wore a dress that exposed half of her shoulders but was not revealing, and open in back to a little below her shoulder blades, and I thought it was modest enough and she looked elegant.
4. I think they are okay if they are not super skintight because they have become so common. They don't stand out like tighter pants do.
Attempting to draw a line is a technique used to derail discussions about modesty.

In reality, there is no need to draw a line. Those who desire to develop the virtue of modest and actively strive to do so will naturally assume modest behavior and dress. Those who reject the virtue are going to do what they want and won't care where the line is drawn.

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