This week, a reader asked this question:
"What are temple clothes? And why do you wear them? WHEN do you wear them?"
I am going to do my absolute best to answer this question! So...if you've ever seen a Mormon entering or exiting a temple, they're probably carrying a little shoulder bag or suitcase. Inside the bag, it contains our temple clothing that we change into during certain temple ordinances. After entering the temple, everyone changes into white clothing in private locker rooms. Some of the ordinances we make inside of the temple require robes, similar to the ones you can read about in the Old Testament (Exodus 28) that the sons of Aaron wore while officiating in the tabernacle or the temple. There are many religions that have special clothing as part of their worship, and the clothing that we wear inside of the temple is symbolic and very meaningful. It is meant to tangibly teach spiritual things.
I was also impressed to talk a little bit about the undergarments Mormon wear. A lot of people refer to them as "Magic Underwear." I definitely get a kick out of that! After Mormons receive the temple endowment, they wear a special undergarment that reminds them of the covenants they made in the temple. The undergarments look similar to a T-shirt style and boxer-brief type underwear for men. It is a VISUAL and TACTILE reminder to the wearer of the covenants of faithfulness he/she has made in the temple. It also helps spiritually strengthen LDS members to resist sin and to live good, clean, honorable lives. You can also compare the Mormon garment to a priestly collar or clothing of a clerical minister: It simply reminds the wearer of his or her dedication to God. The only difference is that Mormons wear their garments under their clothing instead of outside of it.
I'm not entirely sure if this particular individual was referring to the clothing worn inside of the temple, or the garments we wear after entering into the temple for the first time, so I did my very best to answer both. I also got my information from this book. Do YOU have any questions about Mormonism? Email me at we(n)serendipity(at)gmail.com and your question could be featured on future Mormon Monday posts!