One of the surprising things for me after being ordained a deacon in 2012 was the cool, new wardrobe I acquired! First of all, we wear an alb. This is a white, long, flowing garment that should cover the wrists, ankles, and neck. No street clothes should be visible. A rope cincture is worn like a belt around the waist. St. Francis wore a rope cincture instead of a money bag to indicate his poverty. For the deacon, a stole is worn over the alb, going from the left shoulder to the right hip. The priest wears a stole over his shoulders. This stole can be very colorful with a variety of symbols embroidered on it like crosses, doves, or flowers. The stole is the color of the Church season or special for a particular Mass. The color for Advent and Lent are violet; Holy Week, Easter and Christmas are white. Good Friday being the day of Christ’s death is red, as is the color for feast days of martyrs. Other holy days like Ascension, Assumption, Holy Trinity are white. For Marian days, you may see blue in vestments. The color for the times between these special seasons is called “Ordinary Time” and is green. The color of the cinctures of the altar servers also go with the day. The outer garments for the priest and deacon are different yet nearly identical. The priest wears a flowing chasuble, the color of the season over the alb and stole. The deacon wears a dalmatic, like the chasuble but with sleeves. The cope is a large cape clasped in the front, worn over the vestments for solemn celebrations outside of Mass such as Adoration. The humeral veil is worn when the Eucharist is in procession or during Benediction. These vestments give beauty and dignity to our liturgical celebrations. Watch for them.
“When we have God in our heart, it ought to glow. The hearts of the Disciples on the road to Emmaus burnt within them at the sound of his voice.”
~ Thoughts of the Cure D’Ars