Every religion has its own symbols, rites, relics, and garments considered sacred to all its believers. These symbols and relics have a history and their own significance. The followers abide by them and respect them throughout their lives. For Mormons, they are the Mormon undergarments or the Holy Mormon Underwear of the Church of Latter-Day Saints.
This religious garment has always enjoyed its fair share of attention among all. The people are curious to know about this garment, its significance, and its history.
Here’s everything to know about Mormon underwear.
What is Mormon Underwear?
A Mormon Underwear is officially called a temple undergarment or a garment of the holy priesthood. It is worn by the adult church members after their temple endowment. A temple endowment refers to a ritual that coincides with the beginning of missionary service or marriage.
Once participated in this ceremony, adults are obligated to wear this underwear all the time, with a few exceptions. Mormon underwear is made of white material and appears like a T-shirt and a pair of shorts. It is further adorned with sacred Mormon symbols to differentiate it from other clothing.
History of the Mormon Underwear
According to the Church of Latter-Day Saints, the tradition of Mormon temple garments dates back to the Biblical beginning.
“Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them.”
However, the culture of wearing this garment is more recent. The founder of the LDS Church, Joseph Smith, introduced it in the 1840s, after the beginning of Mormonism. According to him, the original design of the temple garments was revealed from heaven. It didn’t change for a long time.
The Church claims, “The Lord has given unto us garments of the holy priesthood, and yet there are those who mutilate them, so that we may follow the foolish, vain, and indecent practices in the world. They should hold these things that God has given unto them sacred, unchanged, and unaltered from the very pattern in which God gave them. Let us have the moral courage to stand against the opinions of fashion, and especially where fashion compels us to break a covenant, and so commit a grievous sin.”
After Smith’s death, Mormon underwear underwent some changes. Some adjustments were made to the clothing, such as shortening its sleeves and pants.
What Does it Include?
Often called Mormon underwear, the garment does not include underwear alone. It comprises a top and a bottom piece, both of which are made from several lightweight fabrics. The color of these garments is always white, for white represents physical and spiritual purity.
Mormon garment is worn under other clothing to stick to your skin. For most people, it takes the place of regular underwear. A Mormon woman, however, can wear an ordinary supportive bra, but it should be placed over the garment than under so that the clothing always comes in contact with their skin.
What is the Significance of Wearing the Mormon Underwear?
There are 182 LDS temples worldwide. The disciples learn about the nature of God, the creation of the world, and how Adam and Eve were their first parents. They also learn about the commandments to follow to devote themselves to God.
After visiting these temples for the first time, the members of the church, who decide to devote themselves, begin wearing this sacred temple garment. Not all the members of the church wear it because they do not choose to devote themselves. Only the ones who choose utmost devotion to God wear them. Furthermore, wearing Mormon underwear also comes with age requirements.
The temple garment is a physical reminder of the promises that the devotees make in the temple. The garment reminds them of their promises made to Jesus Christ. It is the reason why Mormon underwear is considered sacred. It may appear simple cotton and thread, but its symbolism means a lot more.
According to the Mormons, Mormon underwear is worn to obtain spiritual protection. When a Mormon keeps covenants made by them during baptism and in the Mormon temple, the garment adds strength against worldly temptations and protects against spiritual confusion. A Mormon who wears this garment is more empowered to care for their family, read the scriptures, and pray for deep insights. They also remain pure in this dirty world.
Even if they have foolishly fallen into flirtation, temptation, and stimulation and are on the verge of committing a tragic sin like adultery, this garment provides the last-resort wakeup call, thus causing them to stop and get out of the situation, and permanently repent their foolishness.
If they do not stop, the removal of the garment serves as a strong symbol that they are betraying God and sacred promises made with Him.
Know These Lesser-Known Things about Mormon Underwear
Here are some lesser-known things to know about Mormon underwear or temple garments.
- Children in the church do not wear Mormon undergarments.
- The garment is to be worn under other clothing and should remain close to your skin.
- You will not find Mormon underwear in retail stores. A follower has to purchase it from a church-owned store.
- Upon receiving their first temple garment, they are given instructions on what it stands for and how they should care for it.
- Mormon underwear is worn day and night by adult members. It is a constant reminder of the promises the believers have made to God.
- The members get their first garment in a special ceremony known as Temple Endowment. It is a spiritual rite coinciding with leaving to serve a mission or getting married.
- The LDS Church calls Mormon underwear “an outward expression of an inward commitment.”
- The garment represents purity and modesty.
- It comprises many simple marks representing the gospel principles of obedience, truth, life, and discipleship in Christ.
- Mormons are not allowed to make their own garments.
- Mormon underwear can be worn off while engaging in sports.
We hope this article helps you to bust the mystery surrounding Mormon underwear. Keep in touch to know more about the different cultures around the world.