EDITED: collecta: re "weaker sex"

Yesterday I found something really strange. The collecta for St Martina actually speak of the weaker sex.

Let us pray O God, Who among the other miracles of Your power have bestowed the victory of martyrdom even upon the weaker sex, graciously grant that we who commemorate the anniversary of the death of blessed Martina, Your Virgin and Martyr, may come to You by the path of her example. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

Why do they call women the weaker sex?
If I’m right even St Thomas did so. If women are of the weaker sex then Virgin Mary must be so as well.

I am aware that in the majority women are weaker physically than men.

Only God knows who is weaker intellectually or spiritually in either gender.

As long as the Army keeps a differently scored physical fitness test for women based on how a female’s body is built, we are the weaker sex in this sense.

asthenes from a = without + sthénos = strength, bodily vigor

Used in 1 Peter 3:7
Ye husbands, likewise dwelling with them according to knowledge, giving honour to the female as to the weaker vessel, and as to the co-heirs of the grace of life: that your prayers be not hindered.
Haydock Commentary:
Husbands, &c. His advice to husbands:

  1. To carry themselves towards their wives with knowledge, prudence, and discretion;
  2. Not in any imperious manner, but treating their wives with respect and honour, though a wife be the weaker vessel both in body and mind;
  3. Considering themselves and their wives to be joint heirs with them of God’s graces and favours, both in this world and the next;
  4. That their prayers and duty to God be not hindered, neither by too great a fondness and compliance, nor by disagreements and dissensions. Wi.

1 Timothy 2:14 and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.

My first thought to this subject is women give birth, soooo…

[Emphasis mine.]

I love this verse, thank you! I read, “…as to the,” not “because they are,” which made all of the difference in my understanding. There is no dishonor meant in these verses!

This supports the notion that gender roles are (can be) complimentarian, and to treat women with honor, respect, reverence, gentility, and compassion. Like holding a cup made of soft gold, or the thinnest clay – offering support by holding it and not using the cup (vessel) like a tool to one’s own means – honoring the vessel, not just that it hold wine for one to drink.

Holding the vessel great discretion.
Holding the vessel surely but without crushing it.
Holding the vessel gingerly because it is whole by its own strength.

Because women give birth, that is the paradox of the vessel itself. I must conclude that Haydock’s commentary was colored by the time in which it was written.

1 Timothy 2:14 and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became **a **transgressor.

Going to pick up Timothy to read this verse in full context! “A” transgressor, not “the” transgressor! Adam could have just as well have said, “no” to Eve.

And this: the woman was deceived, and had no evil intent in her heart by her nature. I’m going to share this with some friends who have shared that women are gullible, deceitful, and weaker by nature. I’ve been trying to explain the difference between “egalitarian” and “complimentarian” roles for a very, very long time. Thanks, Vico!

Mayor Koch joked that he was going to change the physical fitness test for NYC firefighters. He said that the only qualification for both men or women was whether they could carry a 180 lb mayor down five flights of stairs.


Love it! But I don’t think he had the numbers right :shrug: :wink:

(I personally feel that the PT standards should be the same, BUT I took advantage of them being different.)

Your welcome. Certainly there were consequences for Serpent, Eve, and Adam, and all to follow.

Good observation on Hadock Commentary, yet weak mind means “foolish”, and the serpent fooled Eve.

13 And the Lord God said to the woman: Why hast thou done this? And she answered: The serpent deceived me, and I did eat.

14 And the Lord God said to the serpent: Because thou hast done this thing, thou art cursed …

16 To the woman also he said: I will multiply thy sorrows, and thy conceptions: in sorrow shalt thou bring forth children, and thou shalt be under thy husband’s power, and he shall have dominion over thee.

17 And to Adam he said: Because thou hast hearkened to the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldst not eat, …

It’s worth noting that the saints are not infallible. And the writings of saints, and collects written by the Church, are not guaranteed to have the absolute best choice of words.

In other words, take it with a grain of salt. It’s a literary and cultural tradition that women are referred to as the weaker sex, and there is both truth and falsehood in that description.

I do too – and it ought to be at the old “male” level. Whenever the thought of fire comes to mind for some reason, I keep hoping that if I ever need rescuing it will be men who come up the ladder to carry my husband and me down!!! :slight_smile:

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