Bringing you the "Good News" of Jesus Christ and His Church While PROMOTING CATHOLIC Apologetic Support groups loyal to the Holy Father and Church's magisterium
Home About
What's New? Resources The Church Family Life Mass and
Ask A Catholic
Knowledge base
AskACatholic Disclaimer
Search the
AskACatholic Database
Donate and
Support our work
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
New Questions
Cool Catholic Videos
About Saints
Disciplines & Practices for distinct Church seasons
Purgatory and Indulgences
About the Holy Mass
About Mary
Searching and Confused
Contemplating becoming a Catholic or Coming home
Homosexual and Gender Issues
Life and Family
No Salvation Outside the Church
Sacred Scripture
non-Catholic Cults
Justification and Salvation
The Pope and Papacy
The Sacraments
Relationships and Marriage situations
Specific people, organizations and events
Doctrine and Teachings
Specific Practices
Church Internals
Church History

James Ritson wrote:

Hi guys,

  • Why did Pope Paul VI wear the ephod of Caiaphas?



  { Why did Pope Paul VI wear the ephod of Caiaphas? }

Richard replied:

Hi, James —

This is an old canard. On some particular occasion, he wore some vestment that supposedly represented a Hebrew High Priest vestment. Some people call it the ephod of Caiaphas, pretending that it was associated particularly with that notorious high priest.

Personally, I think it's a smear.

The basic facts about the ephod are well established. It's not something unique to Caiaphas. It should be called the ephod of Aaron, since God defined the priestly garments in Exodus, chapter 28. The 1909 Catholic Encyclopedia described it:

Paul VI wore it numerous times but it was an innovation with him, which subsequent popes have not kept. I have no material on Paul VI's reason for wearing it but I've seen many speculations.

  • Is it possible that he intended to remind people that Jesus Christ is our high priest, and the Church is the new Israel? <Possibly, but that's just a speculation.>

There is a classic multi-colored papal garment, the fanon, which is a symbolic replacement for the ephod. Most recently, Pope Benedict XVI wore it for some canonizations but in the end, the ephod is not a big deal.

It was just a garment, not some official act bearing authority like an encyclical or a decree.

An excellent good book on the papacy of Pope Paul VI by James Likoudis is:

The Pope, the Council, and the Mass.

— Richard Chonak
for AskACatholic

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
© 2012 Panoramic Sites
The Early Church Fathers Church Fathers on the Primacy of Peter. The Early Church Fathers on the Catholic Church and the term Catholic. The Early Church Fathers on the importance of the Roman Catholic Church centered in Rome.