Friday, August 17, 2012


No, not in a restaurant.

The history of the Marianas since 1668 is tightly bound with the history of the Catholic missionaries.  These missionaries came from different Orders which were in charge of the Marianas mission at different times.  They all wore different apparel, and this is where the confusion happens.  I have seen floats, for example, that has Sanvitores, a Jesuit, dressed as a Capuchin.

So, what were these religious Orders?

JESUITS (Society of Jesus)

The Jesuits were the first permanent Catholic missionaries in the Marianas and, indeed, we are called the Marianas because of a Jesuit, Blessed Diego Luis de Sanvitores, founder of the mission.

The Jesuits wore a black cassock, in Spanish a sotana (which we also use in Chamorro).  A black sash would often be worn around the waist.  They wore no hoods and the sash was made of cloth.

RECOLLECTS (Augustinian Recollects)

The longest-serving Order in the Marianas were followers of Saint Augustine, and wore a black habit (religious robe) with a hood and leather belt, with one strap dropping down towards the floor called the correa.

CAPUCHINS (Franciscans)

The Capuchins wear a form of the very familiar Franciscan habit (robe) : brown, with a white cord, and a large hood.  Traditionally, they also wear beards and wear sandals, not shoes.

Jesuit Seal

Recollect Seal

Capuchin Franciscan Seal

1 comment:

  1. A present-day Jesuit has a sash when wearing a cassock but I am not sure during the time of Sanvitores. Jesuits do not have a habit. They wear the cassock of a diocesan priest, sometimes with some modifications in the past decades just to be different. The so called current "habit" of the Jesuit is a actually one of the many versions of the diocesan cassock which evolved to be identified with the Jesuits.