Thursday, June 16, 2011

White Dresses for Baptism? Here is my rant...

My good friend Val is a convert to the LDS Church.  Her youngest daughter is getting baptized on Sunday.  She was getting pretty worried because she couldn't find her daughter's white dress.  I burst out laughing and told her it was not in the Baptism Rule Book that girls wear white dresses on their baptism day.

3284 - Taffeta Bubble Dress

Then I thought I had better check out the ultimate rule book...."To the Google!"

I found this post: 
"The problem is that DD isn't really aware of the tradition because it wasn't a big thing where we lived before. But I've seen every one of the 9 or 10 little girls in her soon to be Activity Day's group wear a white dress to church. They are obviously the after baptism dress. (Parents don't generally buy rowdy, bouncy little girls pure white dresses just to wear on any old Sunday.) I doubt DD will be aware of the tradition before her baptism next month but I don't want her to feel gypped either once she gets to know these girls in the ward better and finds out she didn't get a new white dress to put on after. Then we have another little girl coming up close on her heels. For sure they will both be appraised of the tradition by the time she gets baptized in 16 months. I always feel like a bad mom when I buck these traditions. (We don't do sleepovers either and I've taken endless flack for it.)

Another thing my husband pointed out is that he doesn't want our kids identifying these sacred ordinances with all the things they'll get. He wants them to be focused on the spiritual blessings rather than the physical presents. My daughter is already asking her grandma to give her a blanket for her baptism since one of her friend's grandma gave her granddaughter a "comforter" to represent the gift of the Holy Ghost.

I don't know. I'm still sitting on the fence on this one. But I'll probably side with my husband since our older daughters say they didn't miss having the white dress, and because I'm basically very practical by nature. "

WHO STARTED THIS "TRADITION"?  You wear white as you are being baptized.  Then you change into your normal church clothes.  It may be a new suit or dress that you get, but it does not have to a white dress. 

Tradition?  Bah!  This is just a group of people wanting to be better "Mormons" than others.  A tradition is a ritual, belief or object passed down within a society, still maintained in the present, with origins in the past.[1  (wikipedia)

Do what you want, wear what you want, but don't make a sacred ordinance less sacred because you have to keep up with the Jones.

I guess I am one of the people whose socks don't have to match their underwear. 



11 comments:

De España said...

I never got a white dress either and I don't know any of my friends or family members who did. I've never heard of that tradition. I don't think they're wanting to be "better Mormons" though, they're just getting sucked into a trivial "tradition" idea... I think we all do that about some things sometimes...

Anonymous said...

we are catholic and adopted a 12 year old daughter from the ukraine in russia.to symbolize her starting over we baptized her as an infant at our parish thru the infant baptism program.we dressed her as an infant in the traditional white ankle length gown,head bonnet,lace anklets and satin booties.we did a cloth diaper,rubber pants and under shirt under her gown as her infant under garments.she looked adorable as a baby girl and was accepted into gods kingdom as as an infant.

Anonymous said...

I am a catholic woman in my early 50s and at my parish it is a tradition for the little girls,preteen and teen girls to wear white poofy,above the knees dresses with a bonnet,lace anklets or tights and patent leather shoes for their baptisms at easter vigil and private baptisms.they also wear a cloth diaper and rubber pants under the dresses.i have seen hundreds of girls baptized over the years in these outfits and feel it is very appropriate for them.they are symbolizing their purity and innocence of an infant entering gods kingdom.many girls wear provacative clothing in their every day life and dont take their purity seriously so by wearing the white infant type outfits for their baptisms,they are sending a message to the rest of the congregation that they are worthy of gods kingdom.i have also visited other parishes over the years and seen the girls wearing these outfits also so it is not just my parish.

Anonymous said...

We belong to a large traditional parish in St.Paul and for baptism all the kids,preteens and teens wear all white oufits.this is done for individual,group,and easter vigil baptisms.The boys wear a white suit and tie,the girls a poofy,white top of the knees dress with either a bonnet,flowered headwreath,or a veil,white tights and white mary janes.Like the poster above the girls also wear a cloth diaper and rubber pants under their tights with a white under shirt.this past easter vigil,the majority of the older teen girl wore a bonnet with their dresses and some had the veil.All of the girls looked very pure and innocent in their outfits.after their baptisms,the girls wear the diaper,rubber pants,tights,under shirt and mary janes with their first communion outfits a month later.our daughter is now 18 and was baptized at easter vigil last year when she was 17 and wore the outfit with the bonnet,etc.

Anonymous said...

My daughter,Faith,made her first holy communion at age 11 at St.Jeromes and per their requirements had to wear the communion dress,veil,tights and patent leather shoes.a cloth diaper and rubber pants was required under the tights,so i sewed baby cloth diapers together to make on diaper out of them and then found a pair of white toddler size rubber pants to go over it.they looked cute under her tights.all of the little girls in her class had the toddler size rubber pants over their diaper.

Anonymous said...

help! our 14 year old daughter needs a bonnet wear with her poofy baptism dress this year at easter vigil.i have checked many stores and no one sells them.where have other moms bought them before?

Anonymous said...

Our daughter,Sammi,made her FIRST HOLY COMMUNION at St.Patricks in Edina when she was 14.It is a strong parish tradition for the girls to wear a cloth diaper and rubber pants under their white tights with their communion dresses,so Sammi wore the cloth diaper that was velcroed on instead of pinned and had white adult size medium rubberpants over it.The rubberpants bunched up under her tights.the little girls in her class all wore youth size rubberpants over their diaper.

Anonymous said...

Our daughter,Eliza,who's now 20,was baptized 4 years ago at 16 at Holy CROSS Parish and the nuns required her to wear a white mid-calf length dress with a bonnet,lace anklets and white mary jane shoes.the head nun gave her a cloth diaper and plastic pants that she had to wear under the dress with a camisole top.she was baptized with another 16 year old girl and she had to wear the same outfit also.the daughter wasnt happy about having to wear the bonnet and the diaper and plastic pants.

Anonymous said...

Our 15 year old daughter just made her First communion last sunday and per the parish dress code had to wear a cloth diaper and adult size rubberpants under her communion dress.I loved seeing her in the dress and veil and knowing she was pure as a baby with the diaper and rubberpants under the dress.

Anonymous said...

Our daughter is 16 and was just baptized back in September in the fall preteen/teen baptism class.She chose to wear the white,infant style,high waist,top of the knees baptism gown with a matching bonnet,[gown and bonnet made for her]with white tights,and white mary jane shoes.She then chose as her baptismal diaper,to wear a size 8 pampers cruiser diaper with a pair of white,adult size rubberpants over it under her tights and had a white tee shirt as her top.She even went so far as to have a pacifier on a pink ribbon around her neck and used it some.She looked very cute and infant like!All the other girls baptized with her were in similar outfits-some had the poofy dresses,others had the baptism gowns.

Anonymous said...

We baptized our daughter when she was 13 and did her as a regular infant in a poofy white,knee length gown with a matching bonnet,lace anklets and white satin booties and under her gown we did the gerber flat cloth diapers with the gerber toddler size rubberpants over them and a white tee shirt as her top.We hung a pacifier around her neck that she sucked on while the water was being poured on her head.wHEN SHE MADE HER fIRST HOLY COMMUNION a year later,we did the diapers and rubberpants and tee shirt on her again under her communion dress.