I’m curious, as UU clergy is it appropriate to wear the Roman Catholic Collar? I saw several folks at GA who I know to be UUA ministers (although maybe they are dual fellowship Protestant but I don’t think they could be Roman Catholic as well) who were wearing them and checking out John Cullinan’s blog (who I am stoked will join our fantasy football league, hint hint) I see a picture of him with collar and am reminded of my question. I found this short history:
Origin: "Originally," says the Reverend Henry McCloud in his book Clerical Dress and Insignia of the Roman Catholic Church, the Roman collar "was nothing else than the shirt collar turned down over the cleric’s everyday common dress in compliance with a fashion that began toward the end of the sixteenth century. For when the laity began to turn down their collars, the clergy also took up the mode."
… But that’s only half the story. The clergy also adopted the fad of lining their collars with fancy lace and needlework, which made them more beautiful but also more difficult to clean. So a third custom arose: covering the collar with a changeable sleeve of white linen to protect it from dirt. The modest-minded Pope Urban VIII banned the use of lace in 1624 … but he didn’t ban the protective sleeve. "Thus," McCloud says, "the narrow band of white linen used to protect the collar in the course of a few centuries became what is known today as the Roman collar."
In his essay on Why A Priest Should Wear His Roman collar, Charles M. Mangan states: "The Roman collar makes the priest available for the Sacraments (baptism, confirmation, eucharist, holy orders, matrimony, penance), especially Confession and the Anointing of the Sick (last rites), and for crisis situations."
The Roman collar was a Catholic invention. The clerics mentioned in the above are Catholic ones. That is why McCloud entitled his book "Clerical Dress and Insignia of the Roman Catholic Church." There is absolutely no way the Roman collar was a style many different religious groups used. Those making this argument cannot produce the proof.