Cincture and amice

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: In GIRM 119, it says that “ all who wear and alb should use a cincture and an amice unless, due to the form of the alb, they are not needed.” I assume the amice is meant to cover any clothing underneath the alb (if the alb doesn’t already cover the clothing). But in regards to the cincture, is its purpose  solely functional as a means to keep the alb from opening, or does it have a liturgical significance (or both)? What “form” of an alb would make a cincture unnecessary?


A: This wording was clarified for the third edition of the missal. I’m sure it’s referring to the length of the alb. The primary function of the cincture is to adjust the length so that the same vestment could be worn by tall and short people. If the alb fits, you don’t need a cincture to hold it up and keep from tripping.

That said, I know people with perfectly fitting albs who still wear a cincture. But I have albs that fit, so I don’t wear one.