The Union of Asian Catholic News published this article today:
Sri Lankan lay Catholics call for dress code
The Catholic National Association of Laity (CNAL) in Sri Lanka has backed calls for people of all faiths to dress modestly in places of worship.
CNAL is worried about the wearing of increasingly revealing clothing during church feasts, weddings and Sunday Masses.
In an appeal to worshippers, Victor Silva, secretary of CNAL, noted “with great sadness and dismay the unfortunate trend among some Catholic lay faithful to be dressed in an immodest and most disrespectful manner when participating in liturgical services, with scant attention to the sense of the sacred.”
Sri Lankan authorities have already ordered the pulling down of billboards featuring women showing extra cleavage or exposing thighs to advertise products or services.
The call by CNAL comes as part of a drive to have churchgoers dress appropriately during religious ceremonies.
Many Catholics have complained that churchgoers in Colombo turn up for services in short skirts, halter tops, low cut blouses and shorts.
The Sri Lankan government has set up a panel of different faiths to prepare a dress code for places of worship.
The article is accompanied by a picture (see above) indicating that in the Cathedral of Colombo, Sri Lanka, women are now required to use the veil during Mass.
The drive to have women wear the veil when attending Mass at Colombo Cathedral seems to have begun last year, when, according to a September 2010 article in UCAN, the cathedral priests began insisting on an appropriate dress code for those attending Mass. (Previously, the wearing of the veil for Mass was limited mostly to women from the Tamil ethnic minority -- see this article.)