The wearing of scapulars

I wear a Brown Scapular when it is hidden by clothing, but if it can be seen, I don’t. Why? I do not want people to think that I consider myself really devout and holy. (When I see someone with a scapular on, which is very rare, that’s what I think of them!) Plus, if they think I’m a jerk, I might be giving devout Catholics a bad rap. You know what I mean, “Mrs X thinks she’s a really holy Catholic, but I saw her. . .” Similarly, the inside of my house is decorated in 21st century Devout Catholic, but I haven’t done anything to the outside of my house. Do you think this frame of mind is OK? In my quest for holiness, and I’m certainly a work in progress, I’d like to prune away dead branches, if you think this attitude is wrong. Incidentally, if you intend to prune, please do so with Christian charity and shears of love.

Welcome fivegoldenrings to forums and I hope you will like it here very much!

Wearing a Brown Scapula (or any other blessed items) doesn’t make a person holy; However, wearing no blessed item doesn’t make him bad either.

From the outside look, one should not judge the holiness of a person.

If we wear something and allow others to see, that should be for professing our faith.

God bless.

I am a Catholic. I do not hide the fact. I wear a 5=1/2 San Damiano crucifix around my neck for all to see. I wear scapulars under my T-shirt. I have the prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel on the outside of my apartment door for all to see.:angel1:

Part of my prayer life, every morning, is a consecration to Mary where I ask her to help me live the Christian life “Without Regard To Human Respect”. Or lack of it.:yup:

All this public display has nothing to do with pride, or trying to be holier then thou.:nope:

What it is, is the Franciscan theme of preaching the gospel always, with words as a last resort. When people see my crucifix and/or scapulars, I am preaching the gospel. :thumbsup:

The only people I need to impress by all this are my two cats. Trust me, they are not impressed:rolleyes:

Wearing the scapular is first and foremost a Spiritual Armor to ward off evil notions. It is also a sign of union with the Blessed Mother and it is a actual connect to Heaven.

Remember the promise that no one who should die wearing a scapular will suffer the pains of Hell.

The scapular is many more things that do not meet the eye.

I wear a long brown scapular which generally doesn’t show, but, if it does, it does. It’s a lovely reminder of our Lady’s request to St. Simon Stock: “Take, beloved son this scapular of thy order as a badge of my confraternity and for thee and all Carmelites a special sign of grace; whoever dies in this garment, will not suffer everlasting fire. It is the sign of salvation, a safeguard in dangers, a pledge of peace and of the covenant”.
I also wear a miraculous medal which came from St. Catherine Laboure’s convent in Paris.
These are beautiful sacramentals. And if I’m criticized for wearing them, good for me. But then, I’m Italian and therefore impervious to criticism. :smiley:
My 10 year-old daughter is completely oblivious to tucking in her scapular. I like that.

I recently started wearing a scapular. I find that in most of my clothes it doesn’t show anyway. Since it is summer, the strings will show when I wear some scoop-neck tops. I’m getting used to that. I find the strings bother me more physically (itching and that weird ghost feeling as the brush against my sholders) when they are not tucked completely inside my top. For that reason alone it bothers me. I also think it’s probably not a very good witness to be wearing a scapular and then be constantly fiddling with it–it would make me think that that person was ashamed or otherwise uncomfortable with it.

I tend to try to not draw attention to the fact I wear a scapular. However, I do not frown upon anyone who wears one for everyone to see either though.

Personally, I don’t want to draw attention to myself. Most people see me as a very spiritual person already, so the outward appearance of a scapular could be perceived as “showboating” my spirituality and that is not something that will further the Kingdom of God IMHO.

Having said that, I have no problem with people outwardly wearing a scapular to show their devotion. It is a devotion that has fell into disuse over the years and if more people saw others wearing it, it may spur a revival of the devotion.

You could say I’m torn on the issue. :juggle:

Thank you very much for all of your comments. It’s been great to hear your opinions! An area in my life that has recently come to my attention,through a fantastic priest in the confessional, is that sometimes I am more interested in pleasing people than in pleasing God. This issue touches on that. So thank you for your responses; God reaches out to us in many ways.

What about someone who commit serious mortal sin, then dies unrepentant while wearing the scapular?

Wow ! Good question. You made me recall a true story that happened quite a few yeras ago. I don’t have names but I’ll give you the scenario as best I can, Here goes:

There was an aging but terminally ill Mafia figure in the hospital. He was not expected to last through the night. He led a life of crime (possibly murder, beatings, etc.) He had family members at bedside and one of them suggested that he should have a scapular around his neck so as to escape Hell.

The Mafia figure thought it was worth a chance and had the scapular placed over his head. After some hours, the family had gone home but the Mafioso had an attack; the monitors sounded; the medics rushed into his room and performed rescusitation but while performing the process one doctor said, “get that thingamajig off that man…it’s getting in the way!”

Well, the team responded and removed the scapular…15 minutes later the man died. Go figure.

Also, if a scapular is worn with devotion it is a supernatural armor which strengthens the wearer to overcome temptation.

In the final analysis, the scapular is a guarantee but the one provision is that it must be worn with a sincerity of heart.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit