Bishops, priests and religious should wear the formal long robes of a cassock during most occasions when visiting Rome
, a high-ranking Vatican official has said.
Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican's Secretariat of State, made the request for the formal dress in a letter released during last month's Synod of Bishops.
"The very example of those who, sealed with the episcopal dignity, are faithful to the daily use of the cassock proper to them, during office hours, becomes an explicit encouragement for all, including for the Episcopates and for those who visit the Roman Curia and Vatican City," Bertone writes.
The cassock is an ankle-length robe distinguished by a series of buttons down the front and a sash worn across the waist. While typically seen worn by bishops and cardinals, priests in many parts of the world are more often seen instead wearing button down shirts with clerical collars.