I refer to Cathy Cleary's letter July AD2000. Her apparently laissez-faire attitude is quite amazing.
According to Cathy, young people deserve carte blanche to dress and behave as they choose. So, if the fad of the day is to display a maximum amount of skin, then young women presumably may attend Holy Mass and go to Holy Communion bikini-clad, and young men in short shorts and singlet. I wonder would they attend a job interview similarly dressed.
Cathy should re-read I Timothy 2:9: "I also want the women to be modest and sensible about their clothes and to dress properly. And also, Hebrews 12:28: "Worship God in a way that will please him, with reverence and awe".
To be scantily and immodestly dressed with plunging neckline, bare arms showing arm pits, bare shoulders and back, and exposed midriff is not a sign of respect for the holy place of worship, and does not help one to worship "with reverence and awe".
These sorts of apparel may be suitable for clubs and pubs, but more decorum is necessary in the house of God.
Cathy might also re-acquaint herself with the teachings of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (e.g., par 2523: "Modesty inspires a way of life which makes it possible to resist the allures of fashion and the pressures of prevailing ideologies."
Without doubt, the benign ironical expression in Bruce Dawe's poem is an antidote against permissiveness. The editorial staff of AD2000 are to be commended for their courage, common sense and impartiality.
East Malvern, Vic