If an ordained cleric is not wearing the stole for confessions or blessings or distributing Holy Communion, then what is one to assume? Here's atmospheric electricity from Ezekiel 22:26...
"Her priests have done violence to my law and have profaned my holy things; they have made no distinction between the holy and the common, neither have they taught the difference between the unclean and the clean, and they have disregarded my sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them."
People in the Rome newtwork often prefer to go to confession at the Gesu' with Jesuits or St. Mary Major with Dominicans. More often then not, you never see stoles here or there anymore.
Last month in Padua while at "il Santo" I entered the "Chapel of the Benedictions" and watched as the Polish cleric blessed person after person with no stole. As the embarassed layman I simply asked for a reason. Then I got a lecture on why the stole isn't "necessary" for God's grace.
Folks, let's just obey rules; and custom and the voice of Mother Church.