Liturgy & Liturgical Law Forum: Re:- Dominicans and vestments
Re:- Dominicans and vestments QUESTION from Steven Jarvis on December 15, 2002 With reference to your correspondant's article, I have also come across the practice of Dominicans substituting their habits for albs, whilst i was a student at Cambridge. When I asked one of them about this, I was told that this was not really correct, but something that was often done, as it was difficult to notice with a white habit. I suspect this was particularly common when celebrating Mass for example in a college, in order to avoid carrying a lot of vestments to the place of celebration (priests from the University Chaplaincy often celebrated college Masses in alb and stole, minus chasuble for the same reason.
I am also aware of a similar issue among Capuchin Franciscans (the order which run my home parish), concerning the wearing of the amice: some friars place the alb directly over their habits without an amice and wear the hood exposed over thie vestments. I was told this is common in some places, but was prohibited in England by a Provincial Superior at one time. The priests who wear their hoods in this way are usually visitors from other provinces.The Capuchins do not appear to use the monastic amice (I am not sure why - maybe it is because their hoods are longer than those of other Orders).
I am wondering in the light of this latter case whether decisions regarding the wearing of certain vestments by Religious Orders may rest with the superiors of that order (after all, I believe it is they who can dispense with the wearing of habits, as seems to be the case among a number of Orders, particularly of nuns, in Western Europe and the U.S.)
I would be interested in your comments.
ANSWER by Mr. Jacob Slavek on December 21, 2002 Dear Mr. Jarvis,
Thank you for the information. Yes, the question of whether or not the habit is to be worn may be answered by the superior. Regardless, though, the amice should be worn since is a universal liturgical vestment. Although the practical purpose of the amice is not needed, (that is to cover the street clothes), it still has other ritual meanings.
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