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{Poll} Sandals in Church?

Kaela Worthen Gardner - May 31, 2012

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Are flip flops acceptable in Church? What about other forms of sandals? You tell us.

In the October 2005 General Conference, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland addressed the young women of the Church specifically, saying:

"I make a special appeal regarding how young women might dress for Church services and Sabbath worship. We used to speak of “best dress” or “Sunday dress,” and maybe we should do so again. In any case, from ancient times to modern we have always been invited to present our best selves inside and out when entering the house of the Lord—and a dedicated LDS chapel is a “house of the Lord.” Our clothing or footwear need never be expensive, indeed should not be expensive, but neither should it appear that we are on our way to the beach."

Some people contend that this is a clear condemnation of flip flops, while others think it refers to all sandals, and others think it just refers to a manner of dress and no specific article of clothing or footwear. I've heard some women complain that flip flops are unacceptable, but when you put a tiny bit of a heel on a flip flop, suddenly it's a dressy shoe--but they can't wear heels. Where do you draw the line?

FEATURED SPONSOR Wayne Burton

Are flip flops okay in Church?





What about sandals other than flip flops?






© LDS Living, 2012.
Comments 60 comments

jkcook said...

04:22 AM
on May 31, 2012

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For the first one, the apostle was fairly clear in delineating church and non-church. Saying neither should it appear that we are on our way to the beach” clearly states that he realizes beachware is different than church. For the second question, are you talking about flip-flops and sandals in general or in church? Again, read what he says and ask yourself is this appropriate for the temple or the beach. Fairly simple to answer.

onceuponatime said...

04:32 AM
on May 31, 2012

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If sandals were good enough for Jesus then then must be acceptable for us. I think that if girls attend church, in whatever shoes they have or choose to wear, then that is great and we should welcome them with open arms, not look at their feet and condem them.

smallpin said...

04:34 AM
on May 31, 2012

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When it's roasting hot it's difficult not to but I can understand the concern. I think there are more important issues in female footwear to be addressed like extremely high heels. I don't think they are modest. At one time the only women who wore very high heels were of a dubious nature! The fashion industry can be influenced by sex very easily and we have to be careful of that. Compared to this article, flip flops are a non issue I'm afraid.

smudge said...

05:18 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I think that it is far more important to be at church and behaving in an appropriate manner. I think we have to be aware that not everyone can wear dress shoes for the whole 2 or 3 hours of church. When I have to get the bus to church I can't wear my heeled dress sandals and recently because of a problem with my foot I have been even more limited in what footwear I can wear. And on the odd occasion that I have had to walk the 6 miles too or from church I choose my outfit so that I can both comfortably walk that distance, that it goes with my hiking sandals AND it is suitable for church. That being said I when I do wear flip flops to church it is dressy ones not the rubber kind I would wear on the beach! I would be more concerned about the length of skirts that I see some of our young women wear or the "big" people who wear cloths that are too small for them - exposing either flesh or garments than people wearing flip flops! I was thinking recently on the bus to church about how odd it was the members of the Salvation Army wear a uniform to church and the thought came to me that by wearing a uniform they are not taking part in the fashion parade that seems to happen at any church I have ever been to on a Sunday! At the end of the day we are at church to partake of the Sacrament, study the gospel and fellowship with one another - not to stand in judgement of what people are wearing!

smudge said...

05:18 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I think that it is far more important to be at church and behaving in an appropriate manner. I think we have to be aware that not everyone can wear dress shoes for the whole 2 or 3 hours of church. When I have to get the bus to church I can't wear my heeled dress sandals and recently because of a problem with my foot I have been even more limited in what footwear I can wear. And on the odd occasion that I have had to walk the 6 miles too or from church I choose my outfit so that I can both comfortably walk that distance, that it goes with my hiking sandals AND it is suitable for church. That being said I when I do wear flip flops to church it is dressy ones not the rubber kind I would wear on the beach! I would be more concerned about the length of skirts that I see some of our young women wear or the "big" people who wear cloths that are too small for them - exposing either flesh or garments than people wearing flip flops! I was thinking recently on the bus to church about how odd it was the members of the Salvation Army wear a uniform to church and the thought came to me that by wearing a uniform they are not taking part in the fashion parade that seems to happen at any church I have ever been to on a Sunday! At the end of the day we are at church to partake of the Sacrament, study the gospel and fellowship with one another - not to stand in judgement of what people are wearing!

thinkinglady said...

05:35 AM
on May 31, 2012

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When my son was married in the Temple last year his fiance's mother came to the Temple with a cute pair of sandals that matched her dress. These were not flip-flops. The Temple workers wouldn't let her in. Since she had travelled from across the country to get there, she couldn't just run home and change. They made her wait outside until she could find someone to bring her a pair of shoes. I didn't understand why they didn't offer her socks. We all went to the waiting room until we were called back- and we all had to put of socks- but they wouldn't even let her in the waiting room. She could have missed seeing her daughter married, all because of an interpretation. I understand the rules, but they should have helped her with a solution. She didn't need that stress that day. Sometimes I think the leadership means well when they make these rules- but if there is room for interpretation, someone is going to appoint themselves as the interpreter.The General Authorities need to say "This is acceptable- and that isn't". Are flat sandals considered flip-flops? Ask 10 people-get 10 different answers.

emmamisma said...

06:29 AM
on May 31, 2012

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The great Utah controversy! In the mission field we love to have members and investigators come to church. :)

ranchwood said...

06:41 AM
on May 31, 2012

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Regarding the temple post. I am very surprised this happened. I know at our temple (and I assumed temples across the world) they are not to refuse people because of dress (unless of course it is extremely immodest). Besides the fact that you change when you get inside. We have people show up to our temple (NYC) all the time without ties, in jeans, in sandals. They are usually from out of town and don't have their entire Sunday dress with them. They are never refused entrance.

aja said...

06:47 AM
on May 31, 2012

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How true about just wanting people to be at church! However, I find the story of the mother of the groom who was not allowed in the Temple to be surprising and disturbing. We took a couple to the Orlando Temple for their endowments who obviously missed the 'dress' memo and who showed up, not only in flipflops but casual shorts and that's all they brought. The Temple workers were gracious and worked around it, not wanting to ruin the special day. Of course the couple realized their mistake but the day went well and what was important was accomplished. The story about the sandals does NOT show much loving kindness. What happened to 'teaching correct principles and letting them govern themselves'? you should see what shows up to our ward to worship sometimes but the point is, THEY SHOW UP and if they desire to have different clothes, we make it happen!

csnana6 said...

06:49 AM
on May 31, 2012

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Have you been shoe shopping lately?? You cannot find a decent shoe in the South. I'm talking about a pump with a mid-size heel. Almost everything out there is a flat soled sandal-type shoe, a dressy flip flop, or a slip on wedge type dressier strapless sandal. I live in rubber flip flops at home but it's all about respect at church. I park the flip-flops and wear something nicer. In our Ward if we have people who cannot afford nicer shoes, we buy them some.

azldsgal said...

07:04 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I don't think this is so much about the shoes we wear as it is how we present ourselves every Sunday. The Sabbath Day is a special day. It's the one day we set aside to worship the Lord in his house, to renew our covenants and to get spiritually fed. I want to go to church every week to show the Lord that Sunday is not like every other day and that my "Sunday Best" is the best of everything I have which includes the way I dress.

oneditz said...

07:40 AM
on May 31, 2012

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From what I have heard from several temple workers, the idea for the temple as well as Sacrament meeting is that you should be able to wear hosiery with your choice of footwear. Therefore, anything that slides in between your toes, prevents the wearing of hosiery, and would be inappropriate. In many cultures, it is unacceptable to walk barefoot in their homes. I think our feet are dirty and wearing hosiery of some sort makes them more clean for the house of the Lord.

gpalm said...

07:41 AM
on May 31, 2012

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(Great comment azldsgal!). It's good to have the conversation (in addition to Elder Holland, Elder's Oaks, Ballard and Pres Hinckley have also spoken about this principle), but I share the concern about some of the shallowness of the comments (and downright goofiness of the comment about the Savior wearing sandals--what a distraction if he had worn wingtips! As big a distraction as if Pres Monson wore flip flops to Conference. THAT'S the principle!): OF COURSE all are welcome and wanted, of course that will include some who for various reasons might be limited in their footwear, but the principle is that of John 12:3-8--we offer our very best to the Lord. It's not about our comfort or style, it's about our offering; we are offering our best selves. We should dress as appropriately, as modestly, and the least casually with the least distraction from the sacred occasion as possible.

petragalazio said...

07:42 AM
on May 31, 2012

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Are we really having this discussion? In an era abounding with all sorts of horrid things, from AIDS to drugs, to underage binge drinking, bullying and hazing in schools We live in a time of very profound political turmoil where those of each of the two sides of any argument now simply refuse to even consider looking at each other's thoughts and instead distort what the "other" thinks, a world full of protracted war, pollution, murder and hatred, where countries like Syria murder their own - all of this, and here we are, talking about whether or not people should wear sandals to church??? It is a non-issue. Subtly turning people away from church because of fashion is something a certain group in the Book of Mormon did. It was not right then and it is not right now. We need to welcome everyone, regardless of their appearance. I know Heavenly Father does.

skydawn said...

07:53 AM
on May 31, 2012

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For one who lives in the south pacific, africa or another hot destination wearing sandals is a way of life. I don't believe that Elder Holland is condemning the wearing of this type of shoe. I think he is reminding us to leave the casual of everyday--whatever that casual may be--to the every day. It is more important not to become casual in our attitude about church.

lds_in_dc said...

07:56 AM
on May 31, 2012

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When attending church while visiting in Hawaii we found that we were way out of place in our church shoes. Attire is all about the culture of the people, and not about our faith or reverence. I felt out of place in my regular winter church attire while visiting our family In UT for Christmas one year when I discovered that the custom for women there was to wear red on the Sunday closest to Christmas. In Tahiti, I observed a reverent group of Deacons passing the sacrament in shorts, short sleeve white shirts, and flip-flops. Elder Holland is addressing what he feels is a lack of reverence for the Lord. President Kimball did the same when he said women shouldn't wear denim. Though I personally think women -and men- in tropical climates should not change their cultural traditions, maybe it's not out of a cultural custom that a student at BYU-I wears flip-flops to church. Don't lose your testimony over this. Just do a reverence check before leaving your house to go to church. And Apostles are human. They can derive instruction based on their own frame of reference. however, if in doubt, obey their instruction. The Apostle Paul said that women shouldn't speak in church (1 Corinthians 14:34-35) and there have been a couple of Fast Sundays when I've wondered why that commandment was abandoned.

e3zanyme said...

08:12 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I agree with those who say that dress is not as important as attendance and attitude. I have an alergy to synthetic fabrics that is greatly aggravated by heat. In other words, I have a hard time wearing nylons all three hours of church in the winter. In the summer it is impossible. I buy both casual sandals and dressy sandals. I wear the dressy ones to church and temple and leave the casual ones for everyday wear. What is important is that I recognize the distinction and teach my daughters the same.

atan60 said...

08:14 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I am astonished that the lady was turned away at the temple because she didn't have the correct shoes. I attended a temple sealing where a young woman was dressed in a tunic top and spandex pants underneath and she was allowed in. This was only two years ago. I'm sorry to say that I was judgemental that day and thought what she was wearing was inappropriate. But, like everything else in our lives, we alone are going to be held accountable for the things we wear and the things we do. So as fellow saints, we should just put our arms around those who come to church, love them, hope they want to return, and leave the judging to the Lord. If at all possible, we should wear our Sunday best to Church and to the Temple (whatever your Sunday best is!)

emmafreeman said...

08:24 AM
on May 31, 2012

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Sigh. We have so many traditions that are passed off as commandments in this church that we need to do an overhaul. For example: There is no commandment to wear hosiery in a temple. This is a policy in some temples perpetuated by ladies who used to wear hose. Hosiery is not commonly worn by anyone under 50 these days. Temple workers are human, but I hope any reading this will take a reality pill and stop their unrighteous judgment. On the other hand, Elder Holland didn't say don't wear flip-flops. He said don't wear clothing or footwear you would wear to the beach. You might then be able to make the case that if you have nice new flip-flops that are only worn for church and a separate pair of flip-flops for the beach that is still acceptable because you are making an effort to keep your footwear separate. We should avoid being like the Sadducees and taking everything to the "Nth" degree of the letter of the law. We need to behave in the "spirit of the letter."

grobyn said...

08:30 AM
on May 31, 2012

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...there was recently an article about Utah Mormons. The comments here show that such individuals don't just live in Utah. The doctrine is true, but the culture is ridiculous. Why are so many people so ethnocentric? Let people govern themselves once they are taught correct principles. Thank you all for another reminder as to why I'm happy to have now lived more than half of my life in several states other than Utah.

bgtaylor4 said...

08:41 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I think people commenting here, voting on these two questions, and even the article itself miss the point of Elder Holland's talk. Mostly because it taken out of context. The idea is reverence -- on a personal level. This wasn't about black and white rules or denying agency. The message is that church attendance and sabbath observance are special. They deserve an extra measure on our part to be OUR best -- whatever that might be. In the pure sense, if one wears sandals/flip flops/etc every day (and there are climates, geographic locations, cultures and economies where this is the case), then wear your best ones for Sunday. For a guy, it's try to wear a white shirt if you have one. Wear a tie if you own one and can. Some places jeans are okay -- but one wears their nice jeans. This whole thing is a matter of common sense and THE SPIRIT OF THE LAW.

willow77 said...

08:51 AM
on May 31, 2012

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Yes we should absolutely accept everyone for whatever they are wearing to church. Never judge or turn anyone away.... However we can TEACH that we should present our very best to the Lord on Sundays. If that is flip flops so be it. But most people have better than flip flops to wear to church. We can start with ourselves as women and wear appropriate and nice footwear to church. I wear sandals to church because I live in a hot weather area most of the year. But they are dressy and nice to wear to church. We can then teach our daughters, primary girls and YW about respect and reverence and then let them choose for themselves. We love them and nurture them and rejoice when they are in church, but our job is to teach them.

skhunt said...

09:32 AM
on May 31, 2012

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As Relief Society President in a very hazy hot and humid climate, I honestly do not notice what people wear on their feet. I'm just thankful they are attending our small branch. We have a large LDS Marshallese community in our area who mainly wear flip flops year around, including their children. These people can barely afford food and we're just glad they're here. In the summer when the temps are 120 degrees in the shade, I refuse to wear leather dress shoes as my feet sweat too much, especially in stockings. I wear some form of sandal 7 days a week, on Sundays, I wear dressier sandals. Not sure why this is an issue. If I were in a cooler climate, I would wear more traditional shoes. For the Temple, all LDS members know that you must approach the Temple in Sunday dress. But perhaps the issue of appropriate shoes needs to be further explained so our members are better informed.

leonap said...

10:09 AM
on May 31, 2012

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It seems to me this discussion about welcoming people in church or the Temple isn't the point of either the poll or Elder Holland's comments. The real discussion is within ourselves. What do I consider appropriate attire for church? Of course I welcome those who do not share my point of view. Do you want to wear jeans and flipflops to church, whether that is all you have to wear or is just a personal choice? It is fine with me. But it isn't my choice. I agree with azldsgal, how we present ourselves every Sunday is what is important. The Sabbath Day is special as it's the day we come worship the Lord. An attitude of reverence and respect is the most important aspect of our church attendance. What I wear is only an outward expression of this attitude, and for me it doesn't involve flipflops even if I'm on vacation.

carolekape said...

11:00 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I think there are other things to worry about, like being at church, having a testimony, being kind to others.... Having lived in Hawaii for many years, I think sandles and flip flops are appropriate. I think NO one should ever be turned away or talked to because of something someone is wearing. Sometimes an investigator is wearing pants. I am just glad they are there. Do you think they would want to come back if someone told them they couldn't come if they were wearing pants!? Some people have a hard time going to church anyway, so if they are made to feel bad, why would they come back? I know the gospel is true, aren't we suppose to love everyone, and extend a loving word to everyone. I think this a ridiculous discussion, that has no meaning to me!

carolekape said...

11:09 AM
on May 31, 2012

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I remember going to church as a teenager and one of the older girls told me to get on my knees, in front of others to see if my skirt was long enough. I was a shy person and was very upset about this. I became inactive for many years, because I did not want to be embarrassed again. Members are suppose to be a loving people not judgemental. I pick and choose my battles, this is one I will not pick!

poppyoftwelve said...

11:52 AM
on May 31, 2012

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He taught a principle. Let the people govern themselves. If you are pricked by the principle, then do not wear flip flops to church. If not, then wear them in good health. Nobody is compelled. Me? I would not wear them. However, if you wore them and had an extra pierce hole in your ear lobe, I would not care. How you listen and hear is your own deal....just don't come crying to me if they suspend meetings to go move rocks for an emergency project and you stub your toe. I am totally OK accepting the counsel without having to know the reason why. Others may question if they choose.

concernedone said...

12:26 PM
on May 31, 2012

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Interesting comments. Look carefully at President Holland's comments. It appears that he carefully chose the wording of his remarks. Look at the word "invited". I think he is directing his concerns to the youth, and attempting to teach correct principles. Each of us should learn to govern ourselves, not judge another! Of course, no one should ever be turned away, except in EXTREME situations! As a former temple worker, my instructions were to always make the patron feel welcome and loved! As a patron, I have always felt that from the Temple workers. As a ward member now serving a mission, I think my marching orders are the same! Love each other, and apply the teachings to MYSELF and MY behavior and MY dress. Let others do the same.

sugarbear said...

12:29 PM
on May 31, 2012

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If you have a strong testimony of the gospel and support your Prophets/General Authorities, than what you think shouldn't matter. To respond to the person that said if sandals were good enough for Christ they are good enough for us. Come on! That's all they had! We have so many styles of shoes today, we have a choice, you are rationalizing. You're either an obedient person or your not. Our Apostles are inspired men of the Savior, what they say is what the Lord wants them to say. I choose not to argue with the Lord.

momw said...

12:37 PM
on May 31, 2012

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It is interesting to see the range of comments here. Yes, we are happy when investigators come to church in whatever they may be able to wear, the problem comes when those who should know better slack off and lessen the appropriate standard for themselves. We are recently seeing youth show up to church bare footed...both male and femalwe. Maybe appropriate for Jesus' day, but these are youth who have shoes.We have a problem also with youth walking to the temple bare-footed or in flip flops, which has caused such a problem with dirtying the baptismal font, that special instruction had to be arranged. We have had youth show up to sacrament meeting in swim trunks and t-shirts, not appropriate for a young man who passes the sacrament and knows better. We have to all remember the example we set and teach those who are investigating by our actions and what we wear. What we wear shows our reverence and respect, and our testimony, on the outside. With that being said, we can not judge anothers actions because we don't know the reasons. We can love them and show them by our example what is appropriate and what is not.

racheljl said...

12:47 PM
on May 31, 2012

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I've spent most of my life in California near the beach, and served my mission in Southern France near the Mediterranean. I don't understand when people equate nice, backless leather/faux leather sandals as "beach wear" not appropriate for church. I wouldn't wear my silver leather flip flops on the beach! I bought them for church. Frankly, I was surprised when people online (not in my own ward, that I'm aware of) started interpreting that sort of thing as beachwear. I'm trying not to be judgmental of those who go out of their way to say, "how, evil, those are inappropriate!" Not that this matters, (I think it doesn't!) but the 6 or 7 wards I've been in in Southern CA dress more formally, metallic flip flops and all, than the ward I'm currently in in Utah. Neither bothers me. People dress their "Sunday best," which is exactly what we were counselled. To me, the beach wear Elder Holland mentioned were rubber flip flops, plastic informal flip flops, etc. I think people wear them much less than they did. And, even if people still wore them, it is not my place to judge them and decide why they do: especially if they may be low on funds. And how would I know that for sure? Elder Holland's counsel was for us as individuals to take into our hearts and decide if we could do better. On my mission, we were not required to wear nylons during the summer or hot weather. It would have looked a little funny if we had, given the culture there. People need to stop equating their own interpretation of things with the gospel and find better things to do with their time than judging others on such unimportant things.

cwalker said...

02:52 PM
on May 31, 2012

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I know that flip flops are unacceptable however I truly believe that if you are pregnant and nothing else will fit your swollen fat feet then you have to wear what ever will fit. I have also had to wear tennis shoes to fix plantar faciates and I hated it. Sometimes the Lord will make exceptions depending on your circumstances.

mimimum said...

04:10 PM
on May 31, 2012

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Oh I think this sandal issue is a case of the letter of the law killing the spirit of the law. Can we not all be grown up about this? If the Saviour were standing at the door of the Chapel or Temple or anywhere else, what does he require? A broken heart and a contrite spirit, that is what he requires. Pure humility, not humiliation. Surely with his love in our hearts we can reach beyond the material into the spiritual realm and love our sisters. I remember when I first joined the church I never ever wore make-up but was pulled aside by one of the leaders (male) and told that I had to learn to wear make-up because the "Lord requires us to look our best". I was 19 at the time. For weeks I went to church looking and feeling like a painted clown until this leader called me aside and told me to get lessons on how to apply my make-up. Where does it stop? I joined the church because I love my Saviour and his gospel not because I want to be told what to wear. Dress modestly - that is the key - modest in style, modest in appearance, not costly apparel and certainly not extravagant. Do we pick on sandals yet ignore the extravagant jewels that dangle on wrists, around necks, in ears and ankles? As sisters in Zion, and that is what we are, we must remember our motto - Charity Never Fails - let's be charitable, even to those who wear sandals! You never know, one day you may need someone to be compassionate and forgiving to you.

dviolin said...

04:49 PM
on May 31, 2012

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I think the most important thing to remember, is to not judge someone by what they are wearing. There were times when I was growing up, where all I had to wear to church was flip flops. And I know that there were people in the congregation that would loudly whisper about how inappropriate my dress was, and what they didn’t know is that what I was wearing was the nicest that I had. Do I think they are inappropriate if it is obvious that the individual has something better to wear, yes. But I still will not let my judgment of them, (or essentially) my pride and vanity effect me or let Satan ruin the Spirit that is to be felt at church. I can however, make a conscious effort, to lead by example, and not wear anything to church that I view as inappropriate or let my children dress irreverently either.

mimimum said...

05:15 PM
on May 31, 2012

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Hear hear dviolin - nicely put!

millerfamilymom said...

05:47 PM
on May 31, 2012

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Some people get hung up on the stockings issue. I do not wear pantyhose at all anymore and they are even hard to find. They are pretty much outdated in my opinion. Nice sandals in the summer are my dressy shoes. I don't think you have to have your legs covered completely to be nicely dressed and I agree, not everyone can dress up for Sunday. I sometimes get my grandchildren on the weekend who do not go to church regularly. But if they're here, they often don't have dressy shoes, clothes, etc. I hate taking them to church in jeans, screen print t-shirts and tennies but I'd rather they come than stay at home because I fear what others will say. When my children were young, they were always dressed as appropriately as possible but at times they just could not find that other shoe, or they suddenly outgrew the dress shoes before the budget would allow replacements. I would not wear rubber flip-flops but if I found myself on vacation without my luggage, I might do it. I have lost luggage before and with extra bag costs, bringing full dress (of the nicest sort) is not practical. A simple skirt and sandals may have to suffice. It is important for us to always be welcoming and non-judgmental of all who attend. There are way more important things for our attention. That said, we should dress as nicely as we can without feeling we need to be prom-worthy. This does show respect.

jeanieb said...

05:58 PM
on May 31, 2012

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I agree, it is better to be at Church, however, how we dress, usually affects the way we act. I wouldn't consider not wearing nylons to Church, therefore, my shoes must accommodate. My daughters dress nicely, won't wear flip flops, yet have been seen in "dress" sandals. The Spirit is the most important element here. Sorry to say, but we are too often too casual about looking nice when we attend the most important meeting of the week. There will always be an exception, but flip flops and sandals without nylons, should not be the standard. Just my old fashioned opinion and my take on an Apostle's counsel.

debg said...

09:01 PM
on May 31, 2012

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One of the options not given, was if a person needs to wear flip flops to church because of a medical condition is it okay. I would prefer women as well as men not wear them and I would prefer all the women that came to church would wear modest dresses or skirts. I do know from experience that sometimes flip flops may be the only shoe that may fit because of a surgery or swollen feet or some other kind of medical condition. I am learning though, that I am not their judge, as long as they feel they are dressed their best, then that is between them and the Lord.

eruthbrewer said...

09:49 PM
on May 31, 2012

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In our ward there are a few people who may not have any other shoes and to make them feel they aren't dressed good enough may cause us to lose them altogether. I'm not supposed to judge whether someone is dressed properly. There are several newer members who wear pants even though I don't but at least they're coming and learning. Pants may be all some of these young girls have and it takes awhile for them to try to wear what they see us long time members wearing.

rockhoundjtm said...

11:01 PM
on May 31, 2012

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We should dress like we were going to meet the Savior...for it is to his house we are going. That does not mean keeping/dressing up or down with the Joneses...just wearing the best you have according to each our own economic circumstances. In a society where we rush to make everyone equal we forget one thing...we are not equals to the Lord. Some respect and propriety is in order.

browninhawaii said...

11:26 PM
on May 31, 2012

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When counsel is given by a general authority, I try to apply it to myself--and my family.

hala said...

11:59 PM
on May 31, 2012

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Oh, wow, as a new member and not living in Utah, I have been trying to figure out the LDS "uniform". I am unused to wearing skirts that do not cover my feet, and not very comfortable with my arms not covered to my hands. Its been very difficult to not cover my hair. Now with bare calves, I feel insecure and like a stripper.

c1k said...

08:17 AM
on Jun 01, 2012

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Hala- Welcome to the church :) And if you feel better wearing long skirts and shirts I say go for it. You can even ask your Bishop about head coverings and see what is appropriate. Hope you find a comfortable place :) When these counsels come out I don't understand I some people get so bent out of shape. Remember when we were told as women to only have one piercing and men none. So many questions and resistance. The church has always taught the rule and not the exceptions. Economics, medical etc are all exceptions and not for us to judge. If you go read the whole talk he doesn't specifically name anything. Elder Holland states our young women (and women) are more precious than rubies and should dress as such. And rubies come in all sizes just like women, so we should be healthy but not obsessive about our looks. Personally I'm against flip flops (dressy or not) because they are noisy and disruptive. And if you are saying we shouldn't even be talking about this because there are a lot of other dress issues like length and tightness, those rules are already in place. It's up to use to follow, teach, and enforce those rules. Just because some people haven't gotten it figured out doesn't mean that new guidelines shouldn't be given.

lynette said...

09:16 AM
on Jun 01, 2012

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I went to the temple in Rexburg, Id. and put on a pair of pearl earrings that were my moms because they were her best and I felt reverent and beautiful in them. I was told to go back and take them off because they were distracting. They were in no way out of line. I was hurt and felt that worker was not very smart. I wanted to leave because I was critizied for trying to do everything right and with reverence. I love the temple and have worn them since . No body else has ever noticed.

catherineheiby said...

12:47 PM
on Jun 01, 2012

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with some research & education one begins to understand that everything is understood differently from person-to-person and maybe this is why the scriptures are very clear about judging one another. i know how difficult it can be to step outside one's own thoughts, feelings and experiences to view something/anything from a completely different perspective, namely someone else's point of view. let me share some trivial facts abt flip flops with you---i grew up in the 60s calling them thongs and wore them only in public showers to keep my feet free from fungus and sometime that same decade they began to be called flip flops---from the sound they make when they hit a hard surface as one is walking with them on. actually the origin of these simple shoes goes back some 6,000 years and it is thought that they were originally made from papyrus. did you know that the Savior might have worn them? also in developing countries flip flops are the most affordable footwear. personally i think if a person is clean on the inside then whatever they are wearing on the outside should be acceptable too and i have a rather harsh opinion of heels and especially about women who wear them, especially those flip flop heels (heels without straps)---so maybe we are all shoe snobs here!

mom2two said...

06:39 PM
on Jun 01, 2012

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I truly appreciate the lively discussion! I teach Primary and I love it. I love it because the children teach me so much more than I could ever teach them. See I am a black and white kind of a person. So about twenty years this topic would have been very black and white to me... don't wear flipflops to church. Today it's a lot more grey for me. There's this little girl in my class whose parents do not come to church. To say the family is financially comfortable would be a stretch of the truth. In their home there is one set of grandparents with two of their grown children with their spouses and children. Several times a month this girl walks to church on her own or with a brother or cousin or two. When I first started teaching the class with the little girl in it, it was difficult for me. The clothing the girl wears rarely fits properly and is often torn or unclean. Most times when she comes you can tell she hasn't bathed recently. I thought that certainly this girl or her family should know that she needs to at least be clean before coming to church. After a few months I thought that perhaps today would be the day I would go home with her and talk with her family about hygiene. Then as we sat in the opening exercises for Primary I saw struggling to sing "I'm Trying To Be Like Jesus". She hadn't come to church enough in her short years to learn the songs, so I usually look up the song in my songbook and hand it to her to read the lyrics. This time though she was really focused on the music director and was singing as many of the words as she could remember. Tears were coming to her eyes, but there was also a smile on her lips. When the singing was finished she walked out to the hall with me. I asked her if everything was okay and she replied, "I think that was the Spirit telling me that I'm doing a good job." As I looked into her sweet face I forgot about the torn and dirty tennis shoes she was wearing, and I saw right into her soul. She was doing her best and more than that, she was teaching me to focus on what's really important. She was coming... this 7 year old girl was coming even when no one else in her family was because she knows she needs to be there. I guess the matter is still black and white for me, but my perspective of what is truly white in this situation has changed.

karenchallis said...

07:57 AM
on Jun 02, 2012

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Modesty in appearance resides between the neck & the knees. Sandals are considered appropriate in church here in Canada. After all our culture requires that everyone takes their shoes off @ the doors of our homes. In the wet winter months you will see dozens of street shoes lined up inside the entrance of the Cardston, Alberta temple. To us no beach wear in the chapel means no shorts, tank tops, halter tops etc. In other words no bare thighs, no bare shoulders, no bare backs. If you remove your feet from your uncomfortable Sunday shoes under the pew, no one will blink an eye nor point a finger. I'm sure flip flops are acceptable any where in tropical regions.

sidney said...

12:39 PM
on Jun 02, 2012

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Oh my goodness. This sounds like such a Utah thing to get hot and bothered over. I agree with an earlier comment stating something to the effect that, here in the mission field we're just grateful to have members and investigators at church. No one should ever be made to feel uncomfortable because to their clothing. Let it be trousers if that is what they have. When I was YW president the bishop and RS pres thought I wasn't making a big enough issue of flip-flops. I was busy trying to lovingly instill in the girls a desire to cover their mid-riffs, their bottoms, their necklines, etc. We need to not make every issue a hill to die on nor to make our people feel judged at every turn. JUST LOVE EVERYONE and it truly will all work out!! Even in the temple we no longer bring the sisters "appropriate" wear if they come in slacks etc. Love will truly conquer all.

reginacosta said...

04:07 PM
on Jun 02, 2012

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Who cares what we have in our feet!!! It is most important worry about what we have in our mind and heart... Scriptures don't say anything about Jesus Christ judging how people were dressed. Only Mormons could care about that!!! All American members should have an opportunity to go and watch how in some poor countries, it is so important that the dear and poor members or investigators show up at the church meeting, some times barefooted...

npotter said...

07:16 PM
on Jun 02, 2012

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We should not be talking about people who do not know any better, who do not have any better, or who have special issues. To me the issue is with ladies young and old, who do have better, who do know better, who have become too casual in their church wear and do wear the same everyday, casual flip flop to church that they wear any other day of the week. I do feel that dressier sandals as well as dressier flip flop style sandals are appropriate. As far as hosiery, I can't even believe that was brought up here by anyone. Personally, I do not wear hosiery except in the winter for warmth and I feel modest and appropriate when I attend church.

woodhead said...

07:36 AM
on Jun 03, 2012

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If you have other options, then obviously more suitable attire/footwear is appropriate as a sign of respect for the savior and others. However, I feel the savior would rather have you at church in flipflops than staying away because of your footgear.

karenchallis said...

03:36 PM
on Jun 03, 2012

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Out of curiosity generated by this poll, I scrutinized the female feet entering our Canadian chapel this morning on a cool cloudy Sabbath day. I have never scrutinized before. But for your information since it is June most of the over 50 feet including mine were in shoes & stockings hopefully knee highs not panty hose. Gave that mode of torture up years ago. Most of the under 50 feet were in sandals without hose. I do that on hot days. The just turned 50 stake president's wife wore bare legs with flat sandals straight out of the bible. Love 'em. Have some similar & wear then to church sometimes. The 37 year old bishop's wife was probably in her flat flip flops as usual but because she & her brood arrived late I had quit counting. Many of our ward feet were ready for the beach but no one from the knees up was headed in that direction.

noblesse said...

04:39 PM
on Jun 09, 2012

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All I can say is WOW! I wear nice pumps with nylons in the winter time or boots and in the summer I buy nice sandals that are SO impractical to wear at the beach but they are reserved only for church. If I wore those sandals or flats to the beach people might look at me like I am out of place. I am just grateful for the people who show up at church because they feel it in their hearts that this is where they need to be regardless of their attire as long as it is their BEST. DON'T JUDGE ME BECAUSE I SIN DIFFERENTLY THAN YOU. Sending much love to all those reading this post :)

wahlymom said...

12:49 PM
on Jun 11, 2012

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This is such a "funny" Mormon thing! He was clearly trying to help people distinguish between casual and too casual for church. I don't think the real issue is exactly which shoe or sandal is appropriate. It is a matter of not wearing shoes or clothing that is not showing our reverence for church. Many people only have "flip-flops". Maybe in Utah this is not the case, but out here in the "mission field" we are lucky if some even have skirts or dresses to wear. We have spent hours trying to outfit my daughters non-member friends for stake activities. Most don't even own dresses or dress shoes. The ones who happen to be my daughters size would just borrow hers, but for those significantly bigger or smaller we often had to make due. It would have been horrible if someone had made them fell uncomfortable because they only had flip flops. We once went to a stake dance that was designated "sunday best" One young man wore a very snazzy 3 piece suit with a red button down dress shirt and black tie. He looked sharp. About half way through the dance a stake leader noticed the red shirt and asked him to leave the dance, because "sunday best standard calls for a white dress shirt" This young man had to spend the rest of the dance in the lobby while he waited for his ride. (this whole incident sparked many protests for several months, including a whole ward of boys showing up for a sports day in white shirts and ties!) I silently was cheering for the protestors!!! Sometimes we Mormons focus far too much on the letter of the law, and not the spirit!

12sandyfeet said...

04:17 PM
on Jun 13, 2012

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Jesus wore sandals. Let's focus on what is important and not alienate people by their choice of footwear.

annieb said...

08:17 AM
on Jun 14, 2012

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I don't think flip flops are appropriate for church. Sandals are great when stockings are worn with them. I feel that flip flops and no stockings take away from the sacredness of the sacrament. I think that if our priesthood leaders can survive the heat wearing shoes, stockings, and even ties us girls can survive wearing stockings. I also think women's dresses and skirts are more modest with a slip worn underneath. Visiters may come dressed differently, but I think if they continue to come they'll adapt to the example that is being set.

melora said...

09:40 AM
on Jun 17, 2012

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I have foot neuropathy and wearing anything with a closed toe is very painful. I try to find sandals and flipflops that look dressy for church. So for those who think they are not appropriate for church should I just stay home?

troyboy1 said...

10:06 PM
on Jun 17, 2012

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I can't believe how petty the LDS church can be. Micromanaging members all the way down to their shoes. Seriously?

mythoughtsexactly said...

03:57 PM
on Jul 15, 2012

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He who must be commanded in all things is a slothful servant. And he who wanted to command men in all things was cast out of heaven along with 1/3 of the host of heaven. Lets read that again: "from ancient times to modern we have always been invited to present our best selves inside and out when entering the house of the Lord". We are invited--not required--to present our best selves INSIDE and OUT. I have learned that change comes from the inside and eventually the outside will catch up. It is far better to show up at church in blue jeans and flip flops than to not go at all. Those who condemn others for not wearing what their version of "best dress" is would do far better to remember to present their best inside self at church instead of worrying about the condition of other people's outside appearance. While on an airplane I struck up a conversation with a lady who eventually told me that she had given up going to church because her bishop told her she had to wear a dress and she, at the time did not have one, and was not able to afford one. We all should focus on becoming closer to Christ instead of picking each other apart.

nmauga said...

02:02 AM
on Mar 03, 2013

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What is in one's heart is most important than looking at flip flops or sandles. Since I live in the Pacific Islands, wearing closed shoes is just not worn here or your feet would be hot, sticky, and smelly. Let's just focus on what Heavenly Father would want us to do. I doubt that the advice is to be taken to the extreme.
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