Can I wear sneakers to church?

Sneaker, stemming from the word casual wear are typically composed of lightweight and flexible materials with soles made out of rubber or a synthetic material to match the pair. Towards the beginning of their inception in the 1800s, they were more so associated with sports and physical activity but in recent times have made their way into leisure wear often being identified with “athleisure”, comfortable yet versatile way of dressing.

The Bible never makes specific mention of how to dress when going to church making holding a definite opinion complicated.

The Argument for Sneakers

Depending on the churches, denominations or both, diverse expectations in regards to attire during worship may be applied with some believers having a more relaxed point of view when it comes to dress code.

Generally more comfortable, it can also be said that sneakers are better suited for prolonged periods of time spent standing or sitting which happens a considerable number of times during a service. What’s more, sneakers can also just be a more practical option in terms of context but also affordability.

The Case Against Sneakers

As mentioned previously, appropriate attire will highly depend on where you may be exercising your faith. Due to the nature of a service, there are some who hold the opinion that proper attired should coincide with it that is, formal wear arguing that disregarding the sacred nature of this event to be disrespectful.

Additionally, there are some religious traditions or cultures where a specific attire is required or associated with attending a service with some people having the natural inclination to dress formally. Besides, if appearing less formal by wearing sneakers makes you stand out or draw unneeded attention to yourself, it’s cause for concern.

What to Consider when deciding whether to wear Sneakers to Church

Talking to your pastor and members of your church to find guidance is a good first step to take when attempting to address this issue.

Additionally, although sneakers may be more comfortable and perhaps more adapted to your sense of fashion, take time to really think about whether or not you would be comfortable in this type of attire for church, not just in the practical sense but from a psychological perspective as well. As said above if you are drawing attention away from where it should be directed because of your sneakers, things may become cumbersome.

When clearly examining the issue, it’s easy to see that there is no perfect answer to this question. The decision should therefore be guided by the context as well as the makeup of the community you belong too.

On the other hand, if sneakers do not distract from your worship experience or others then wearing them could be a welcomed alternative, making your church experience even more enjoyable than it already is. Moreover, exploring options from Christian apparel brands could be a way of ensuring you’re staying true to His word.