Clothing the SDA ClergyMay 10, 2007
In 1903, following the lead of the GC, the (unofficial) South Africa Conference was remade into the (official) South Africa Union Conference with an American, W. S. Hyatt (pictured above) as president.
I found it intriguing that Hyatt is in this photo, wearing an item of dress not normally associated with SDA clergy.
Hyatt was not the only SDA minister to garb himself this way. It was apparently, relatively common amongst missionaries in certain parts of Africa.
The following picture of Mr & Mrs Walston–also missionaries in Africa illustrates this point. The caption also gives an explanation as to why this dress form was chosen: “to help smooth the way in many situations.” It seems then that wearing such an item of clerical costume enabled the wearer to be easily identified as a clergyman and that this recognition allowed the wearer to accomplished various tasks more easily.