The scapular originated as one of the most important parts of a monastic habit. Originally, scapulars were large pieces of cloth with a hole in the center to be placed over the head. The front and back panels of the scapular would then hang at an equal distance on the front and back of the wearer’s body. From these, personal devotional scapulars developed. Much smaller in size, devotional scapulars are still worn over the head in the same fashion but are made of a single square of wool cloth and bear specific symbols and colors according to the confraternity from which they come. Today scapulars are also made of medal and wood and can be covered in plastic to protect them. The scapular
comes in many varieties, each with specific indulgences attached to them, and promised to those who wear them faithfully.