What is the dress code for altar boy at your parish?

I went to another parish to attend the feast day, and saw that the altar-“girl” was wearing flip-flop. This will never happen at my parish. I did send an email to the pastor about this though.

I thought it wasn’t appropriate and sent an email to the pastor about this matter. Am I too picky about this?

No, but the pastor will probably tell you you’re being too picky. Most people have no clue what the Mass actually is, so dressing appropriately to be at the foot of calvary seems like a silly idea.

You did well to complain. Altar service is supposed to be very serious, but unfortunately the servers and their parents treat it as if it’s just another after-school activity. At my parish, the Altar servers are supposed to wear dark pants and dress shoes, and girls have to have their hair tied back, but lately our current priest has been lax with this.

The problem with trying to keep the Altar servers following small details like this is that the parents are often only going to church long enough to either have their children receive the Sacraments or until they find something to alienate them. There are parents at my church who force the coordinator and priest to tread a fine line lest they have an excuse to be driven away.

Well in fairness to the girl she may have a medical problem of some sort. When the Parish Priest at my Parish was recovering from an operation he wore sandals on the Altar, for example. And I suppose it is fairly Biblical in a way, given that the Apostles probably wore sandals.

On the whole though I agree with you, if there isn’t a very good reason to the contrary I think it should be black/dress/smart shoes of some sort.

Considering that flip-flops have been all the rage with girls for the past two years, I think it’s more than likely that the girl is wearing them because they are fashionable.

Yes, when I wrote the email to the pastor, I did mention that I didn’t know if she had any medical problem with her feet, and if she didn’t, it wasn’t appropriate.

However, there are always some kinds of shoes for people with feet problem; it is quite expensive though.

I do think that there are more fashionable and appropriate sandals to wear than flip flops. I think today I realized why I dislike flip-flops so much–It’s the FLOP-FLOP that I have been listening to every time a co-worker of mine walks down the hallway.:banghead:

I see you are in Texas, it is the middle of summer in Texas, I can see where the flip-flops have come from.

I have also been in the Honolulu Diocese for masses and flip-flops are a common thing for alter servers to wear under their robes. I see this as just adjusting to the current weather climate. As winter comes there will be fewer flip flops.

I am just glad the girl is in her ministry and I would expect that is the general opinion of the parish you attended.

No dress code for our altar servers. We’d be hard pressed to impose such when the pastor wears his sweats and moccasins or his beach sandals (sometimes with socks, sometimes without) under his alb.

I recall my home parish having all the altar servers in Phentex slippers at one point.

Why, why, why is everyone so against flip flops? I see this come up again and again.

I am in my 40s, and from the time the snow melts in March until it flies again in November (usually), I wear flip flops on my feet. :smiley: I hate wearing closed shoes. I love the feeling of being nearly barefoot in my flip flops.

As I mentioned on another thread, I went to a good friend’s Friday night black tie wedding a few weeks ago. The bridesmaids wore fancy pink flip flops with their dresses, and guess what footwear the bride had…sequined white flip flops! I loved it! It looked nice and I am sure they were all quite comfortable! (and NO ONE made the “flip flop” noises when they walked.)

I never make the flip flop noise when I walk, but I know others who do. Maybe they just don’t know how to walk in them:shrug:

Flip-flops are ugly and way too informal for Mass.

Here in California you often have to look closely to tell cheap flip-flops from fashion shoes. In fact the cheap ones sometimes look better than the more expensive sport ones. Around here flip-flops ARE dress shoes.

It’s possible they changed the rules but our parish actually required our altar servers to wear sandals in honor of our patron who was a Franciscan who journeyed up and down the state in sandals while dealing with a serious heel injury . (Since we have about an equal number of male and female servers they wear robes rather than cassocks and surplices.) It’s been my (limited) experience with Franciscans that they usually wear cheap sandals or flip-flops.

I agree.

And I don’t think it is a hot weather deal. In my parish (TX) neither flip flops nor sneakers are allowed. But when I visit my relatives in NY and NJ, there are always girls serving in flip flops.

For the record, our dress code is dress pants and dress shoes for the boys, skirts for the girls (although in a pinch when a girl has to sub she might just fold up her pants so they don’t show under the alb). Girls also have to wear their hair pulled back.

Enforcing a dress code at Mass is likely to drive people away from the Church.

Ugly? I would disagree. I love flip flops and there are some VERY cute styles out there.

Informal? To each his or her own. I disagree.

A bridal flip flop…


My typical flip flop


I also have a whole bunch of plain colored ones…black, blue, pink, green…

None of those flip-flops seem appropriate for serving at Mass.

We only have altar boys and none of them wear flip-flops. They wear dress pants, shirts and ties - dress shoes with socks (yes, even in the sweltering Michigan heat & humidity) under their cassocks & surplices.:thumbsup:

Keep in mind that the girl may not have been intending to serve when she went to Mass.

Last night, for example, for the Assumption, I wasn’t planning on attending Mass or serving. At the last minute, I wound up going and I wound up serving. I was wearing a pair of Chucks that had Chuck Taylor’s name screened onto them - I would never wear them to serve in under ordinary circumstances, but I wound up serving in them anyway.

Ordinarily, I keep to non-inconspicuous footwear.

I think plain colored ones would be fine for servers. :wink:

The plain ones and more colorful ones I wear to mass, depending on what else I am wearing (what color capris!).:smiley:

The top ones were an example of bridal flip flops that the bride wore at a wedding I recently attended.:thumbsup:

I have read numerous threads were people are so aghast at parishioners wearing flip flops or sandals to mass, and I don’t understand why. Jesus himself wore sandals, as did his disciple and numerous saints. Why can mass-goers?:shrug:

Our parish has only altar boys. They are to wear a shirt with a collar, dress slacks and dark shoes and socks. Then they wear a black cassock and surplice over that. I have seen altar servers in sandals before at other parishes–when we are on vacation at a beach location. Our parish is suburban so really no reason why regular shoes can’t be worn, although in the summer our pastor, who is very traditional about liturgy, will wear fisherman’s type sandals sometimes. But I’ve never seen flip flops.

Edited to add that I think of the shoes shown as a bridal flip flop as a thong sandal, and the plastic type ones wore to the beach or shower (or shopping! lol) as flip flops.

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