Volume. XXXI, No. 21
Sunday, 20 November 2016

From the Pastors heart: Clothing Men of the Cloth (2)

In 1 Timothy 2:9, Paul advised women to adorn themselves in modest apparel.  The “modest apparel” in the KJV is translated as “respectable apparel” (ESV), “proper clothing” (NAS), and “dress modestly” (NIV), and the RSV says, “. . . adorn themselves modestly and sensibly in seemly apparel.”  The Bible that talks about salvation, redemption, heaven and hell, also speaks about dress code.  How did we come to church this morning?  Did we come with uncombed hair, wrinkled shirt, dirty shoes, and sing “To God be the glory . . . .?”  We all know that we do not present ourselves to interviewers or even our customers without preparations.  Our appearance does not save us.  At the same time, we know that our appearance is also a reflection of our inner character.  I’ll continue with Hedwig Jemison’s article, “clothing men of the cloth,” for your perusal.  Here it comes . . . .

When Molloy confirmed this “familiarity effect,” he tested it further, using shirts and ties.  He asked three hundred people to judge a grouping of traditional shirts and ties and another grouping that, although non-traditional, were not gaudy.  The subjects were to score each combination as exhibiting good taste, poor taste, or as being neutral.  Eighty-seven percent chose the traditional combinations as in good taste.  Seventy percent chose the more modern combinations as being in poor taste.  Molloy conducted more experiments testing the necktie than any other article of clothing.

“Whether you like it or not, or believe it or not,” he says, “your tie, more than any other aspect of you appearance, will determine how people view your credibility, personality, and ability.”  His surveys leave no question that the tie symbolized respectability and responsibility.  Hundreds of tie patterns exist, but only a few are suitable for professional wear.  Illustrations of these appear in Molloy's book.  When properly tied, the tip of the tie should come just to the belt buckle. Thus your height will determine the length of tie you will need and how to knot it. For business wear, bow ties have several negative effects. If bow ties are worn as sports attire, the same patterns are recommended as for all other ties.

In all tests, the most acceptable dress shirts are, and will continue to be, white and solid pale colours.  These evoke the best responses for credibility and effectiveness. Properly colour-coordinated solids go with every suit and tie.  Pale-blue is still the most popular of the solid colours for shirts.  Pink and lavender shirts are too feminizing and have negative masculine reactions.  And according to Molloy, research shows that a man should never wear a solid red shirt, no matter who he is or what he does.  What about shirt-sleeve length?  Molloy gives the following all-embracing caution: “You will never, ever, as long as you live, wear a short-sleeve shirt for any business purpose, no matter whether you are the office boy or the president.”  Research shows that men who wear short sleeves have secretaries who arrive late 125 percent more often and come back from lunch late 130 percent more often than secretaries of those who wear long-sleeved shirts.

Molloy is frequently asked whether there are any traits common to all successful executives.  He answers, “There most definitely are: they always have their hair combed and their shoes shined. And they expect the same of other men.”  Molloy makes two important statements in his book: “If I have conveyed nothing other than the message that clothing should be used as a tool, then I have fully succeeded in my goal.”  “If the reader has accepted my second message, that beauty is not the name of the game, efficiency is--then I'm a perfectly happy man.”

Fortunately, cost is not a significant factor in dressing for success.  Molloy states that if a man knows how to choose his clothing, he can, without substantial increase in his clothing expenditure, look right on all occasions. After years of tabulation, he has devised a simple set of do's and don'ts that make it possible for any man to dress in a way that will greatly improve his effectiveness.  Many men have already done so through their own innate knowledge of good taste.  Some of Molloy's research involved ministers and their clothing.  He showed pictures of men in various outfits and asked the respondents to identify the clergymen.  Their image of a clergyman was a man in a conservatively cut two-piece black, navy, or dark-gray suit with a white shirt and conservative tie.  They seldom identified men in three-piece business attire as clergymen.

This information is significant, because of the role of expectation. If people expect a man in a particular profession to dress in a certain manner, they are more likely to believe him and trust him if he appears in the expected garb.  The research also included pictures of several dozen men identified as clergymen wearing everything from traditional clerical attire to leisure suits.  Molloy asked his subjects which ministers they considered most effective, sympathetic, best educated, et cetera.  Then he had them choose the pictures of the men they would most like to have as their minister and the men they would least like to have.  In both tests they chose men in conservative, two-piece suits as their favourites.  Surprisingly, as many businessmen rejected “clergymen” wearing three-piece pin-striped suits as they did those wearing leisure suits. Earlier research showed that the clergy who did not wear the conservative clergy garb were less effective in their ministry than were those who wore the identifiable clothing. Could it be that the way the minister dresses has some bearing even on his soul-winning activities?

William Thourlby wrote recently: “Aside from the glamour professions like entertainment and advertising, the top executives in most conservative corporations wear traditional clothing that does not call attention to itself.  Quiet reliability is part of the look.  In fact, be wary of any item of clothing that you are complimented on -- unless you sell clothing! You want to show that your mind is on business, not your clothes." -- Sky. January. 1980.  However, we must remember that most clergymen on any given day perform a variety of tasks and deal with a cross section of the public.  Obviously, they would not wear a suit to help with church construction or when accompanying a group of young people to the beach.  The first rule of dress is common sense.

The following words were penned in 1871, long before Molloy and his research: “It is important that the minister's manner be modest and dignified, in keeping with the holy, elevating truth he teaches, that a favourable impression may be made upon those who are not naturally inclined to religion.  Carefulness in dress is an important item . . . . “Black or dark material is more becoming to a minister in the desk and will make a better impression upon the people than would be made by a combination of two or three different colours in his apparel . . . . The very dress will be a recommendation of the truth to unbelievers.  It will be a sermon in itself . . . .”  “A minister who is negligent in his apparel often wounds those of good taste and refined sensibilities . . . . The loss of some souls at last will be traced to the untidiness of the minister.  The first appearance affected the people unfavourably because they could not in any way link his appearance with the truths he presented. His dress was against him: and the impression given was that the people whom he represented were a careless set who cared for nothing about their dress, and his hearers did not want anything to do with such a class of people.” -- Testimonies. vol. 2, pp. 610-613.

How much weight, significance, and value do we put into our worship?  Do we remember God who instructed Moses to build an altar also instructed him to make a priestly garment with specifications?  Surely, we can honour the Lord with our modesty in dress code.  Would you consider . . . .”

Your Pastor

More Lively Hope



*Kitchen Roster - Helpers this week: Bro Daniel Volvricht; Sisters Clara Ki & Bernadette Ng. Helpers next week: Bros Danny Chu, Edwin D’Mello & Daniel Ki.
*Cambodia Missions, 13 - 21 Feb 2017. Anyone interested to go, please see Elder Michael D Lee.
*Offering collection next Lord’s Day will be given to the Independent Board for Presbyterian Foreign Missions.
*Church treasury has transferred AUD$6,780.07 to Bro Wei Feng this week.
*Please note: Those rostered for worship duty, please make arrangements for others to replace your duties if you are not able to do them for any reason.

Praise & Thanksgiving

Journey mercies: Elder Michael, Sis Alice & Mr Lucas Lee;  & others arriving safely at their destinations.
Visitors & new worshippers.
God’s daily mercy, guidance & blessings.
Church activities in the past week.

Prayer Items

Health & God’s healing - Pastor Ki; Rev George van Buuren; Dr Gary Cohen (USA), Dr SH Tow (S’pore); Rev Patrick Tan (S’pore); Rev Edward & Sis Lehia Paauwe; Grandpa Ki (S’pore); & others in affliction.
God’s comfort to Sis Nita Chong & family on the home-going of her sister-in-law in Melbourne.
iSketch & Tell Ministry: Pr Hai Seng Lim’s ministry in Melbourne.
Cambodia Missions.
New Life BPC (London) - Dr Carl Martin; God’s guidance & encouragement for Task Force & congregation.
Providence B-P Church, Mawson Lakes - Ps David & Sis Susan Weng, & congregation.
Theological studies for Dn Sung Hyun Ma & Bro Kevin Low & families.
Youth & Assistant Pastor for Hope B-P Church.
God’s guidance for Covenant, Ebenezer, Hope & Providence BPCs to form an Australian B-P Presbytery.
Journey mercies:  Bros Joseph Selvanayagam (Adl/Beijing) & Wei Hong Seow (Cambodia); & others who are travelling.
Safety in pregnancy: Sis Tabitha Tan.
Interpreters of sermon into Mandarin.
Exam preparation for university students.
God’s guidance for trouble-free settlement of new church on 20 Jan 2017.
Australia - Salvation of Australians & for our politicians not to pass any legislation that is against God’s Law.
Jobs - Those seeking for employment.
Unity of doctrine & fellowship in Hope BPC.
God’s restrain on Moslem militants & protection of believers in Indonesia, especially in Jakarta.



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