In what is seen as a very bold move towards transparency, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has created and released a very short video detailing the role of garments and temple robes in the worship of members. The video discusses various faiths around the world that use outward vestiges of religious symbolism to detail an inward commitment to God. The garments and temple robes are discussed openly as symbolic to members of the Church, and that their use is sacred. The Church mentions at the end of the press release that garments are worn by faithful members who have made covenants in the temple, and that temple robes are worn only while those members are participating in temple ordinances.
Never to my own limited knowledge have I ever seen the Church so openly display and talk about garments and temple clothes, making this video extremely interesting and thought provoking. Many in the media have made fun of our garments in the past by calling them “magic underwear”, which this release makes sure to clarify is extremely offensive to members. The Church urges the media to treat the mention of garments with the same respect as they would the sacred vestments of other faiths.
Due to the sacred nature of garments and the temple, comments that we deem offensive will be immediately discarded. Honest questions will be answered in a similarly sensitive way.
Here is the official video explaining Mormon underwear published on the Church’s public relations website.
You can also read a more personal account of What Transparency About Temple Robes and Garments Means to Me.
*10/22/14: An issue in some of the stock footage of the video prompted the Church to alter the video by removing a scene. We have updated the above video. The message remains the same. Read here for press release.