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Is covered shoulders/knees required for all churches in Italy?

Is covered shoulders/knees required for all churches in Italy?

Old Apr 12th, 2008, 05:32 PM
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I am in total agreement with ira about flout and flaunt. Just because the vast majority of the population misuses them and some dictionary has cowtowed to that fact does not mean they are synonyms. They have entirely different meanings. Flaunt means to show off or display. Flout means to show total disregard for. Are those even similar concepts? NO.

PalenQ: It's pretty obvious what the general rules are about attire in Catholic churches in Italy. As someone mentioned, it's all over every guidebook I've ever looked at, not to mention websites of the famous basilicas, churches, and cathedrals people are most likely to be visiting. Ignorance is no excuse for not being properly and respectfully attired, no matter what you may think of the rules. To try to enter a church in Italy with shorts and a tank top is just so wildly inappropriate I can't image anyone who isn't a complete egotist doing it. Do you go to the opera in a bathing suit?
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Old Apr 12th, 2008, 05:48 PM
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And please what are those rules, seriously

no tank tops OK

what else?

seriously please enumerate

shorts? some do indeed allow, quite a few actually IME

so how do i know if there is not a shorts with a red X sign at the entrance

or should i just always never wear shorts into any Catholic Church?

Again my position has been misunderstood - i do abide by any restrictions posted or i know to be so - like no swimming suits

But it does seem extreme to make women and not men covering their heads and shoulders yes?

And if the church requires this fine but if they don't and many don't then i should do it everytime?

No i do it when i know a certain church wishes it and churches seems to have wildly differing things about what is accepted IMO

But one thing is i do respect any rules posted, God squad or not to enforce them
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Old Apr 12th, 2008, 06:20 PM
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For whatever reason, PalenQ, you're being particularly thick, and as Padraig says, specious, about this issue.

Wearing shorts into a Catholic church, or any religious site, anywhere in the world, kind of horrifies me on some level. I just don't wear shorts unless I'm jogging or working out. That's what I think shorts are for. As a woman, if I'm traveling in a hot climate anywhere in the world, I prefer to wear skirts or sundresses (which need to be supplemented with a shawl or something when entering a religious establishment).

So: tank tops are Verboten. So are shorts. So are miniskirts. So are anything that might fall under the general category of "revealing." Churches (and mosques and synagogues and temples) don't have "wildly differing" opinions about this - they all just want you to COVER UP - your shoulders, your knees...who cares what body parts they're fixated on? Just DO it! It's SO NOT HARD to be dressed appropriately to visit any religious site in any country. WHAT is the big deal?

And it's not their job to post it; it's your job to know.

And I will add that I was brought up Catholic but have no affliation with that church or any other these days, but I have a healthy respect for people who do engage in and respect their religions.
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Old Apr 12th, 2008, 06:50 PM
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<i>&quot;The Dress Code is strictly enforced at St. Peter's Basilica. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts. <u>This applies to both men and women</u>.&quot;</i>

Actually, PalenQ, it is the same standard for men and for women. I do not believe there is a requirement to cover heads in those churches.

I'm always grateful that in general Catholic churches are nearly always open anywhere I've traveled. Many, if not most, other Christian churches are locked, and if open they often will charge an admission fee.
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Old Apr 12th, 2008, 09:32 PM
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It's very easy to find the &quot;rules&quot; pertaining to churches and other religious sites. Even before researching Italy, I've run across mentions of scarves and keeping them with you just in case you need to cover up, on packing lists and packing sites. If a newbie like me knows about it... it seems like most other informed travelers would.


I say shorts in churches are pretty much a bad idea, unless you're under 12, or in an extremely laid back modern church. It's just not proper attire. Would you go into a fancy, upscale restaurant in shorts? The same applies to religious sites. Basically try to make an effort to look &quot;decent&quot; and respectful. If you're too lazy to do that, then go visit somewhere else that doesn't care.

Though really, guys under say... 30 wearing shorts are kinda ridiculous unless you're on a boat, or playing basketball, or something like that. And there's definitely some women who maybe shouldn't be wearing shorts. Unfortunately, I'm probably one of them.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 12:52 AM
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caladrius wrote: &quot;And there's definitely some women who maybe shouldn't be wearing shorts. Unfortunately, I'm probably one of them.&quot;

Maybe, maybe not. The correlation between a woman being able to look good in shorts and her thinking that she she can look good in shorts is zero (plus or minus 0.025).
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 03:24 AM
  #67  
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PQ wonders,

&gt;I thought there were only one God so why does he emit so many differing rules - why does he speak in different tongues to different churches?

Because the dang furriners don't speak English.

&gt; it does seem extreme to make women and not men covering their heads and shoulders

I though that the rules for being covered from shoulder to knee were the same for both sexes.

IIRC, there was a time when in Christian houses of worship women covered their heads and men bared their heads.

In Jewish houses of worship, men and women cover their heads.
.....................................
Hi SS,

&gt;'big' and 'large' are 2 words that mean the same thing, yet, they do both exist in the english language.&lt;

&quot;Big&quot; and &quot;large&quot; do not mean the same thing, although they could be close in certain contexts.

&quot;This box is too small. Please, get me a large box&quot;.

&quot;Nope, still too small. I need a big box&quot;.

&gt;flaunt and flout seem to be synonymous in certain contexts...

Never.

To flaunt is to show off.

To flout is to contemptuously disregard.

&quot;She flouted the dress code to flaunt her terrific....&quot;.
.....................................
Hi N,

&gt;...is it your contention that there are no synonyms in the English language?&lt;

One of the beauties of English is the sheer number of words.

There are no perfectly exact synonyms. If there were, we wouldn't need more than one word.

There are words that can be used interchangeably, if exactness of meaning is not important, eg, &quot;big&quot; and &quot;large&quot; or &quot;small&quot; and &quot;little&quot;.

However, no matter how much anyone here wants to insist, &quot;flaunt&quot; and &quot;flout&quot; aren't even close to being synonyms, and if you have a dictionary that says they are, get rid of it.

Please, don't tell me how language constantly evolves.

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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 03:50 AM
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&quot;Please, don't tell me how language constantly evolves.&quot;

You'll notice how I had refrained on this thread, as so far I had not seen the relevance. But since you bring it up...

I've been listening to some podcast lectures and reading John Milton. You would be shocked, Ira, shocked at the spelling and grammar he used.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 03:53 AM
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But ira, you wrote (above):

&quot;It is not for we mortals to decide...&quot;

...which is ungrammatical. It should be:

&quot;It is not for us mortals to decide...&quot;

I too cringe at the flout/ flaunt error but I've reserved my indignation for views I don't like, rather than the form of their expression.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 06:47 AM
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&lt;it does seem extreme to make women and not men covering their heads and shoulders&gt;

Ira said

I though that the rules for being covered from shoulder to knee were the same for both sexes.

NIME - I have been asked to take off hats in cathedral when i forgot to do so

Women in Italy at least are told to cover their heads

and though i abide by these sexist to me rules

i can criticize them as Taliban-light and documenting the Catholic Church's considering women to be lower than men - like they cannot become Priests or Popes - if that is not codifying discrimination churchwise against women i do not know what is
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 07:22 AM
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Pal, you're confusing good manners with obedience to religious authoritarianism, which is a seperate issue altogether.

If one is entering a place with a dress code, it's only good manners to follow the dress code. That goes for anywhere, not only relgious houses. Some restaurants require men to wear a tie and jacket. Some churches require people to cover their knees and shoulders. At one time men were expected to take off their hats in a woman's presence (polite men still do)

Making an effort to dress appropriately is a small but vital ritual that demonstates some degree of care about the comfort of other people. It may not always seem logical but we aren't robots, this is human society. It's anti-social to flout these dress codes, especially when you're visiting another country, whether they are hard and fast written rules, or simply social custom.

I hate it when I go to someone's house and they expect me to take off my shoes. But I do it anyways because I'm a guest. When people come to my apartment, I don't have the same rule, people are free to wear their shoes. I think that's the better way to host, but it doesn't mean I refuse to take my shoes off in someone else's home just because I think it's stupid.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 07:31 AM
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Another different question is when the people at the church door think of themselves to be like st Peter at the Heavens Gate so they can say whatever people they fancy ...hey, you can't enter.
One of those didn't let me enter Florence Cathedral because I was wearing trousers and he said that &quot;women should wear a skirt&quot;. I just laughed at him...and went away to sit on a terrace while my parents visited the Cathedral. While I was waiting, the turn change and another man was at the gate..he let everybody to join the church..no matter how they were dressed (no one was in shorts, though ) but my parents were about to go out and I was not in the mood anymore.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 07:35 AM
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Pal, you're confusing good manners with obedience to religious authoritarianism, which is a seperate issue altogether.

HOW MANY TIMES IN THIS THREAD HAVE I SAID THAT I ALWAYS ADHERE TO WHAT IS EXPECTED OF ME IF IT IS OBVIOUS THAT'S WHAT IS WANTED?

Again i alway follow the rules in churches

sometimes if Italians and others are going into churches wearing shorts i do as well

and if there are no x thru shorts signs at entrances then i assume that is not required there. So i go in - churches that don't want post that.

It's poor manner if you defy what you know is expected of you

But if Italians are also doing it - as Italian tourists often do IME - yes they do indeed wear shorts when on vacation themselves and they do go into churches with them unless there are signs

When in Italy do as the Italians do.

I'm tired here of folks thinking i'm flaunting the rules

i follow the rules and i will take issue that the rules are universal posted or not - apparently Italians do not know that
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 07:47 AM
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Since wearing shorts has turned into a statement for gender equality, and against religious oppression and sexism, I would like to suggest to rename that fabulous garment so what was formerly known as &quot;shorts&quot; shall be called &quot;freedom pants&quot; from now on to eternity. ;-)
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 07:52 AM
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Apres: I'd be interested in your comment on Kendrina's experience

even the guards apparently don't know what is right and what is wrong and use discriminate standards

how am i to know

i never dreamed trousers would not be allowed and you had to wear more revealing skirts

schizo if you ask me

this all has something to do with Pope's and Vatican way out of touch with the common person anymore and is the reason the church has withered away in places like France
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 08:11 AM
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These &quot;guards&quot; are not trained by the Pope himself, but are the inapt attempt by that specific church to keep out half-naked people, who are sucking on gelato while they waltz through those churches as if they were ticking off another Florence' tourist attraction from their list.

I think this discussion is futile, when people need a billboard with 50 rules before they act to what is more or less common sense.

What do you do when you come to a cliff where there is no sign telling you not to step near the abyss? &quot;Oh, here it must be okay to take a really close loooooook....
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 08:12 AM
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I wonder why the Italians have to put signs up outside their churchs at all? Why, because historically we tourists would walk in sometimes during mass, talk loudly, take pictures with a flash, and trot around in a place of worship half clothed, ignoring the point that these are houses of worship and tend to offend the worshipers.

I would have been guilty of the same thing at one time, but I check the travel boards for info. I know I cannot chew gum in Singapore, but also know I cannot bring it in to the country - thanks to the folks here on Fodors.

So lammon, it looks like you have your answer - no shorts, tank tops, whether the church has a gatekeeper or not. Its the norm for the country, tho you may sneek into one not occupied with shorts on, but why do so when you have the comments of the good folks above.

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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 08:55 AM
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Well, I wouldn't wear shorts or a tank top in a church whether Italians were doing it or not, or whether or not there was a guard or a sign posted at the door. To be honest, I don't think shorts or tank tops belong on any adult in the first place, who isn't on the beach, at the cottage, or exercising.

I agree that kenderina was treated unfairly, but I'm curious how long ago that happened? I could believe that maybe up into the 1970's some cantakerous old kill joy would deem trousers on a female immodest, but would a woman be turned away today for the reason?

If the dress &quot;rules&quot; are haphazardly applied, then why not err on the conservative side? I just don't understand why this should be such a huge issue. I really wish more people erred on the conversative side when dressing period, meaning covering up instead exposing too much skin. Remember, even Marilyn Monroe wore a sweater during her striptease number to &quot;My Heart Belongs to Daddy&quot; in Let's Make Love.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 12:30 PM
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Pal, you are being deliberately obtuse, probably because of your often stated dislike of the Catholic church.
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Old Apr 13th, 2008, 12:59 PM
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<i>&quot;probably because of your often stated dislike of the Catholic church.&quot;</i>

...which has, by the way, become tedious.
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