Women covering their heads in church and nuns trying to be priests

Some comments I made on Facebook today:

“Men sexualise what women wear, and women indulge in vanity.

The simplest thing might be for women in church to a) dress modestly in line with local norms and b) dress like a woman in line with local custom.”


“Another problem with veiling is that women often get the theology wrong. I just read yet another claim that it is all about feminine “power” from God. No, it is about subordination in the natural order (read what St Paul actually wrote). If a woman doesn’t accept that, then she shouldn’t veil or cover her head. But at the same time, she certainly shouldn’t be preening herself on her supposed feminine uniqueness. That is pride and vanity.”


From here.

“According to St. Paul, we women veil ourselves as a sign that His glory, not ours, should be the focus at worship, and as a sign of our submission to authority. It is an outward sign of our recognizing headship, both of God and our husbands (or fathers, as the case may be), and a sign of our respecting the presence of the Holy Angels at the Divine Liturgy. In veiling, we reflect the divine invisible order and make it visible. This St. Paul presents clearly as an ordinance, one that is the practice of all the churches.”


Nun Auto-Excommunicated, Dismissed for Faux Ordination

“As Aquinas wrote: “Accordingly, since it is not possible in the female sex to signify eminence of degree, for a woman is in the state of subjection, it follows that she cannot receive the sacrament of Order.””


5 responses to this post.

  1. Few too women veil in Church and those who do often have grave misunderstandings as to why they should. Indeed, I have noticed a worrying element of pride. Some seem to think they are endowed with such riveting beauty that men will be distracted by them if they are not covered up – this is more of an Islamic notion, of course – and others seem to think it elevates them above men. Others use a veil as if it covers all manner of sins (such as wearing immodest clothing and gossiping in the back pews). However, this is not to say that veiling should be discouraged, only that the Church needs to provide better formation in the proper roles of men and women.


    • I have to wonder if this is one reason why the church let the discipline drop. The whole thing had become silly.

      A kind of para-theology has developed among some of the Catholic women who do veil or cover their heads. What they seem to be avoiding is the clear, central meaning of a woman covering her head: to show her acceptance of the natural order. This is what scripture says. All the other ideas, about “woman as sacred vessel” and so on, seem just to be sentimental accretions.

      This is why my suggestion was that a woman in church should simply dress modestly and in a female style. If she wants to cover her head – to show her acceptance of appropriate authority – she can simply wear a hat or a scarf or, if she wishes, some kind of veil. When we attended the Latin Mass together, my wife eventually settled on a hat.


      • Fisheaters has a decent essay on the topic: http://www.fisheaters.com/theveil.html Personally, I cover my head at all times, not just in Church, usually with a tichel, sometimes with a hat. I find it the easiest way to be ‘ladylike’ wrt my hair. Women have become very sloppy in their dress and manners, and the messy ponytail trend is symbolic of this disdain for pleasing others or accepting a natural role.

      • Yes, Mishka, one of my quotes above is actually from that article. But I am not too sure about that site. I have a vague idea it might be not quite “kosher” so to speak.

        Both men and women have become much sloppier over the last few decades. Even in church. I remember a number of years ago going back to our old parish of St Peter’s, Toorak; arguably one of the most socially “superior” in Australia; and I was amazed at the sloppiness of the congregants. I am pretty sure it was not like that on a Sunday when we used to go there and I was an altar boy.

        My wife Karna has short hair, and always has had, so there is no issue there. She does almost always wear skirts: to work and when going out in general and to church. I generally insist that she does when she is out with me.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: