September 18, 2013: What Message Are You Sending?

~ by Mary Galvano

I was walking into a Catholic church and noticed a sign on the door that read, You have been invited to an extraordinary banquet. Are you dressed appropriately? What a great sign! If only we all did as it said.

Even when dining, people don’t really care to dress up anymore. My husband and I have date night and we like to dress up for one another because it makes the experience a little more special. We are showing that we care to be in one another’s company. Looking around in the restaurant it is hard to believe how people come to dinner, even if it is a nicer one. I wonder what would happen if this generation of “sloppy dressed” people were placed amongst the generations before the 1960’s? What would they say to us?

Church is even worse. Not only are parishioners sloppy, but also they are overly sexy, and not sexy in a good way. Little girls have bare backs and are wearing spiked heels. Some have short shorts or skirts showing more than is needed to be shown. The parents aren’t any different. Men have flip-flops on with Bermudas and shirts hanging out. What is going on here?

It doesn’t have to cost much to put on your Sunday best. In my old parish in Fort Myers there is a large Haitian community with some living in very poor conditions. Yet every time they go to Mass they each dress up as if they are going to an “extraordinary banquet” and each one has a big smile on top of it. Whether they get their clothes at a thrift store or anywhere else, they know it is important to dress appropriately because Mass is special.

What message are we sending to others in the way we dress? What message are we sending in the way of our manners? Now we know that Jesus wants us to be more concerned with what is on the inside than the outside, but how we are on the inside reflects to the outside. If we are filled with the Holy Spirit we will have expressions of joy on our faces. And if we are pure of heart we will wear clothing that is modest and behave in a manner appropriate to God. Dressing modestly doesn’t mean being boring, quite the contrary. It is about sending a message of respect towards others and how you want to be treated.

Our manners can have a domino affect on society. If you think your actions don’t affect anyone, beware they do. You personally may not feel the affect but someone else will. Temptations can be strong and the result can be a terrible one. Mother Angelica once said a girl dressed in a revealing way can send dangerous signals to a man that can cause him to act on them, maybe not to that particular girl but to another.

As children of God it is our obligation to act as heirs of the Kingdom of Heaven. We are of Holy Royalty! Our pearls are not to be thrown before swine. We are to guard others and our souls in the way we present ourselves to the outside world. Being a child of God doesn’t come without its difficulties, but it doesn’t come without reward either. The reward is being forever with God.

The next time you take a foot outside your door ask yourself, “What message will I be giving today?” And don’t forget to put on your smile.


Mary Galvano-Bajohr is a singer/songwriter, LPGA golf instructor, speaker and author. On the golf course she is a dedicated professional, but go to a Yankee game, a Pro-life event or other venue and you just might see her step up to the microphone and sing the National Anthem or the Ave Maria.

Visit Mary’s website at

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