To be a bishop, it’s important that you dress the part.
(Click to enlarge and see fashion faux pas)
Ralph Napierski (on the left in the photo above) claimed to be "Bishop Basilius" and mingled with religious officials before trying to sneak into a meeting of Catholic cardinals. He’d passed through one level of security and had his photo taken with at least one real cardinal before he was caught by the Swiss Guards.
Supposedly, they stopped him for his numerous religious fashion mistakes: his cassock – which should have been ankle-length – was not long enough, he wore black sneakers instead of dress shoes, his cross and chain were not official, he wore a black fedora hat instead of a skull cap, and his purple sash was merely a normal store-bought scarf.
Would he have made it if he had a better costume designer?
Authorities were unsure of his intentions, but Mr. Napierski claims to lead the "Catholic Order Corpus Dei", which is not an official Catholic organization. He’s also posed as a priest at erotic trade shows to advocate the use of sex toys by Catholics.
– Phony Bishop: German Imposter Sneaks into Vatican, Spiegel Online>>
– Father phony: Man tries to sneak into pope talks, USA Today>>