“Who are you wearing?”

It’s a question celebrity reporters often call out on the red carpet.

It’s a provocative question for each of us to consider every day. Ephesians 6 tells us to put on the full armor of God and Galatians 3 tells us to clothe ourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ. We are to put off the ways of the world and put on Christ.

Which leads us to ask, is Christ just a put on?

Each year Hollywood’s elite travel to New York for an event called The Met Gala. It is a showcase of opulence and excess and this year it was flirted with outright sacrilege.

In their attempt to dress the part of the year’s theme, “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination,” America’s a-list celebrities donned designer costumes mocking religious orders, religious iconography and the Pope.

Oddly, the event also featured displays of artifacts on loan from the Vatican and a surprise appearance by the choir from the Sistine Chapel. So, the church, at some level, contributed to the fun being made of the Cross and its Christ.

Like pornography, we tend to think we know sacrilege when we see it.  But where’s the line?  Is a white mini dress with a Pope-style robe and miter sacrilegious? Is a mock crown of thorns? What about the application of the cross to the top of slit in a dress that runs from the floor to the navel?

Sacrilege is defined as profaning that which is sacred. Specifically the misuse of ecclesiastical vestments is considered not only impious and disrespectful but a desecration.

Some will here protest and say it was all in good fun, all publicity for the church is good publicity in the current anti-Christ climate, or one of God’s transcendental virtues is beauty and these people and many of their garments were certainly beautiful. Discernment here is critical as we are prone to go along to get along and if we go along long enough we we will find that we have long since departed from the One who is the Way we were called to walk.

So, let’s ask again: Who are you wearing?

If you are a Christian you are called to put off the things of the flesh and put on Christ. Not as an ornament or accoutrement, but as both the covering of sin and the outward manifestation of the new self. As Christ’s representatives, we re-present Him to the world.

Luke Moon on current events in the Middle East

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