As we were leaving Mass, I was approached by a reporter from the local paper. She began by telling me how nice all the girls and I looked. While I thought she was just paying me an undue compliment, it turns out she was writing an article on women (and girls) dressing more formally for Mass. She asked if I always wore a dress to church and if I required that from my daughters.
I do require that for the most part the girls wear a modest dress to Mass. I also try to do the same.
I had a hard time answering her initial questions. After a morning of scrambling and making-do, I felt unprepared to answer questions about dressing up for Mass. Luckily I have had this conversation on a few occasions and was able to remember some of them. I liked an analogy a friend used about how we would dress if we were invited to the home of some dignitary, our boss, or the Pope. We wouldn't show up in our ratty clothes, but rather we would make an attempt to be presentable. Mass is coming to the house of our Lord, how much more should we prepare ourselves? I feel that making a few extra efforts on Sunday morning teaches my girls that going to Mass is special.
I do think this must be balanced with remembering we are not attending a fashion show. I don't think it is necessary to dress to the nines, nor do I think we need to spend excessive time and energy in our physical appearance. In fact, in some cases, time would be better spent Spiritually preparing for the mystery about to take place. And let's face it, we have all had worse mornings than what I had where dressing up just isn't possible. As with most things, balance is key. I also firmly believe being at church is of primary importance, our dress is secondary.
I am glad I went through the extra frustration on Sunday to get everyone ready for Mass. I hope that I was able to adequately answer the reporter's questions. I also learned my lesson and finished the laundry earlier this week. Let's hope this Sunday morning goes a little more smoothly too.
P.S. The picture above is not from Sunday (it is from Easter). This Sunday, no one looked that nice and there was no need to document it with a picture.