While I’m about ready to let it drop until something else really interesting turns up, I’ve just run across the Presiding Bishopric’s statement about pastel shirts that was mentioned in that recent post and might as well post it for the record. This comes from 1952:
Aaronic Priesthood Members to Dress Conservatively When Officiating in the Sacrament Service
We have observed, with growing concern, the wearing of loud-colored sport shirts and sweaters by our Aaronic Priesthood bearers while officiating in the sacrament service.
While it is recognized that we should stay away from a required uniform dress, yet it is felt that moderation in dress would be more in keeping with this sacred service.
Since President David O. McKay has suggested that more attention be given this detail in our work, we have sought his counsel and are now in a position to publish our instructions in this matter, which instructions have been personally approved by President McKay, as follows:
While we do not attempt to regulat the manner in which those who administer the Sacrament should be dressed, it is felt necessary to suggest that sport shirts of loud colors and patterns, sweaters and coats of the same class, or any other unusual form of dress be avoided.
The wearing of white or very light pastel-colored shirts is recommended for those who participate in the sacrament service. The wearing of coats and ties is always appropriate, though not obligatory. This is not a step toward formality — it is only a precaution against such dress as is not in keeping with the sacredness of the sacrament service.
Stake and ward leaders are urged to give this matter adequate attention in order that the administration of the sacrament may be impressive and appropriate.
I like it. It teaches correct principle and lets brethren govern themselves. It doesn’t define “appropriate” with hard-and-fast rules, thereby giving little permission for officious “looking beyond the mark” by anyone.