Is it Okay To Wear T-Shirts to Church?

It’s Sunday morning and all are racing to get ready for church. Mom has on a nice dress. Dad has on his best slacks and button up shirt. Susie, the 10 year old has on her favorite Sunday dress. And then comes in the 8 year old son, Johnny, wearing his favorite blue t-shirt and blue jeans. Being in a rush, Mom raises her brow with slight disapproval, but given they’re already 10 minutes late, she says, ‘OK. Get in the car.’ For the first time, Johnny wore a t-shirt to church. And, it wouldn’t be his last. After many long convincing conversations where he insisted he did it once, and ‘so many of the other boys wear t-shirts to church’, Mom gave in (but not without a long debate in her own head along with Johnny’s Dad).

This isn’t an uncommon question that many parents and individuals in general face. Are t-shirts ok to wear to church?

It might simply come down to one’s beliefs. Out of respect, many believe that wearing t-shirts to church should be a no-no. However, many may argue the fact that as long as you’re in church, then what you wear (within limits), shouldn’t matter, including t-shirts.

Some churches go as far to have a dress code, where others ‘encourage’ church attendees to dress appropriately, which sometimes means ‘no t-shirts’. However, my experience has been that t-shirts are often permitted in church, more so nowadays than previously, but it is expected that one would use good taste in selecting a t-shirt to wear to church. Also, it seems that males vs. females are given more leniencies when it comes to wearing t-shirts to church, as well as children vs. adults.

The type of service you’re attending might make a difference as to whether or not a t-shirt’s appropriate. For example, more contemporary services might be more casual or laid back whereas a more traditional ceremony might be a bit conservative where a t-shirt is not appropriate.

Assuming that the church you attend is open to you wearing t-shirts to church, there are a few things to keep in mind when selecting a t-shirt for church. It should be clean, neat and well pressed without offensive language or pictures (I think we all know what ‘offensive’ means for church). There are several t-shirts that you can purchase that have ‘religious’ sayings on them that seem very appropriate to where to church. Also, for females, there are several different styles of t-shirts nowadays that can be dressed up for church. What t-shirts are appropriate to wear for worship at church comes down to using good common sense.

Given there are a variety of churches to choose from; from conservative to contemporary to upbeat to traditional, the best thing to do is to find one that fits best with your thoughts and beliefs. And if you’re a t-shirt fan, then find a church you’re comfortable wearing t-shirts to, but please, use good judgment when selecting your church t-shirt wardrobe!

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