vendredi 18 avril 2008

Pope Benedict's Style

The Holy Father has revived many dormant traditions and introduced a few innovations of his own
Reported by Fr. Guy Selvester

The Papal Wardrobe
Virtually every article of clothing worn by the Pope carries meaning and history. In this photo, the strip of white wool decorated with crosses that he wears over his shoulders, called a pallium, evokes a style dating to the 11th century, when the Eastern Orthodox Church split from the Roman Catholic Church. It has been suggested that this gesture is intended as a way of reaching out to the Orthodox.

Daniele La Monaca / Reuters

The Color Purple

Vestment colors are used to represent the mood of the Mass being celebrated. Violet is used for penitential seasons and occasions of mourning. The cape-like vestment itself, called a cope, is in a modern style that Benedict has laid aside in recent months.

Danilo Schiavella / EPA

Joyful Color

Rose is only worn twice a year, on the 3rd Sunday of Advent and the 4th Sunday of Lent, when this photo was taken. In order to mark the relaxation of the penitential character of these seasons, the normal color, purple is lightened a shade, yielding rose.

Alessandro Di Meo / EPA


The Pope has worn less of fully cut vestments like these in the last few months.

Chris Helgren / Reuters

The Mitre

Benedict wears a precious mitre at an Easter mass in 2008. The jeweled precious mitre is one of three mitres in the Vatican repertory. The other two are the golden mitre, and the simple mitre, which tends to be plain white. Benedict prefers mitres somewhat taller than those favored by John Paul II.

Dario Pignatelli / Reuters

Rare Sighting
Blue chasubles (the outermost garment) are extremely unusual for the Pontiff to wear. The normal liturgical colors used by Catholics are: White, Red, Green, Purple, Black and Rose. This garment, worn by Benedict in Austria last year, is also unusual in that it features a very full cut and its abstract design.

Robert Jaeger / Gamma

The Camauro

This red wool cap has been part of the papal wardrobe since the 12th century. It fell into disuse after the death of Pope John XXIII in 1963, but it was revived in December 2005 by Benedict.

Alessandra Tarantino / AP


The last Pope to wear a white Easter mozetta (the shawl-like garment over the shoulders) was Paul VI (1963 - 1978). This garment was traditionally worn during the first eight days of the Easter season. Benedict has not only revived that custom, but extended the garment's use throughout the whole fifty days of the Easter season, in order to mark the special, solemn character of the time and the centrality of Easter to Christian belief.

Evandor Inetti / Zuma

The Saturno

This traditional red hat, named for its resemblance to the planet Saturn was a favorite of John Paul II. Benedict has worn it several times to shield himself from the sun.

Tony Gentile / Reuters

The Holy Father makes his first journey to the USA since becoming Pontiff of the Catholic Church
[April 16, 2008]

Nationals Park Stadium, Washington, DC
The Holy Father waves to attendees as he celebrates Mass, on April 17.

Max Rossi / Reuters

United Nations Headquarters, New York City
Benedict stands with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Eric Thayer / Getty

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