Menstruation=women cannot be priests

I go to a secular college and today in philosophy class, my teacher was telling us that the Catholic Church did not allow women to be priests because of their menstruation cycle. Evidently it is evil and so women are evil and cannot be priests. Then he went on to say that some Catholics have this “archaic idea” that the Church is the bride of Christ and priests are married to the Church and therefore must be men. I have heard the Bride of Christ one, and agree with this “archaic idea,” but I have never come across the women being evil because of their menstrual cycle. In Deuteronomy it says that women are unclean during their time of month and that they must go outside the camp . . . but I didn’t think that unclean was equated with evil. I tried a google search on it and didn’t come up with anything except something about Hasidic Jewish women still cleansing themselves today (and they do not consider menstruation as evil but as a gift from God.) Did any of the Fathers write anything about women’s monthly cycle? Or could anyone give me a link to such a site that would promote this idea?

I’m am contemplating going to his office hours and asking him about it. However, it may seem slightly odd since his opinions of the church only took up about two minutes of class.

Another one of my friends has this particular teacher in another philo class and says that he has had some ideas about Christianity that were not exactly on base.

He is just off base. He does not understand Catholic beliefs. Tell him he should actually find the correct information about Catholic belief and stop acting like he knows what he is talking about.

It has always been my impression that the reason women are not allowed priests is because Jesus chose only male apostles and that therefore the Church would be adding something new to what Christ did. Ultimately, the Church is allowed to discern the implications of Christ’s teaching, but it is not allowed to innovate. If a Church teaching was innovative the Church has failed in its mission.

Therefore, since Jesus did not give us female apostles, we cannot have female priests.


Ary Girl - tell him to produce his sources for his statements. He would expect no less of you had you stated this in a paper, he should be held to the same level of accountability.

These instructors can’t just make stuff up and get away with it.


You mean he doesn’t even see the Church as the Bride of Christ in Scripture???

Just when I thought I’d heard it all…:rolleyes:

Ary_Girl, what your professor said about the theology of women’s cycles is preposterous. It frankly does not pass the laugh test.

However, your professor was right, but misleading and incomplete, when he described priests being married to the Church and the Church as the Bride of Christ. He may call the “Bride of Christ” teaching an “archaic idea” but it is goes back to the beginning of the Church and is valid today. Even many Protestant groups use this as a concept. The Bible uses this analogy more than any other to describe the relationship between God and His people.

The incomplete part is that when a priest is performing certain activities; when administering certain sacraments, he becomes an alter Christus and acts en personae Christie, the person of Christ. To do this, he must be a man because Christ is a man.

That Christ only appointed men is important. Nor can it be said that he did this because of some sort of cultural influence. Christ is God, God transcends all culture and is never constrained by human ideas or trends.

This is ridiculous. Mary, a young virgin woman who no doubt has a menstrual cycle, is the Queen of Heaven, and sits with God in Heaven.

Then he went on to say that some Catholics have this “archaic idea” that the Church is the bride of Christ and priests are married to the Church and therefore must be men.

Another reason is that priests are in persona Christi - the image of the person of Christ - a kind of living icon - and because Christ was a male person, the priest who images Him to the world also has to be male, in order for the iconography to work.

(Have you ever seen an icon of Jesus that showed Him as a female? I haven’t, either … :wink: )

This is where one finds an opportunity to challenge unsubstantiated opinions. We need people like this to stir our sediment and allow us to grow. Everytime I am presented with nonsense such as this, I research and end up with more information about something that I may have never been concerned about. So, look at this as an opportunity for your growth as well as for the evidence he may try to provide to validate his confusion.

Stay strong and God Bless you…teachccd :slight_smile:

This is from the Luke E Hart Series on Catholicism

12. Who can be ordained?
For bishops or priests, as distinct from deacons, “‘[o]nly a baptized man (vir) validly receives sacred ordination.’ The Lord Jesus chose men (viri) to form the college of the twelve apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry. . . .The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible” (C 1577). It is not arrogance but humility that makes the Church insist that she has no authority to correct her Lord. One compelling reason against the ordination of women is that a religion with priestesses would be a different religion, and would implicitly signify a different God.To see this point,we must begin with data, with facts. One such fact is that the true God, the God who revealed himself to the Jews, the God of Jesus Christ, is never called “she” but always “he” throughout Scripture. Jesus himself always called him “Father,” never “Mother.” His mother was Mary. It is also a fact that the Jews, alone of ancient peoples, had no priestesses. For priestesses represent goddesses, and priests represent gods. God chose to incarnate himself as a man.This is also a fact; this we know.What God’s reason was, we do not know with certainty – though we do know what that reason wasn’t: it wasn’t because women are inferior or less holy, for Scripture declares “the image of God” to be “male and female” (Gn 1:27). But we do know that, as C. S. Lewis put it,“Christians believe that God himself has told us how to speak of him.” Three additional arguments against the demand for priestesses are that this demand is recent, local, and secular.

  1. The demand is recent. It has never been done. Throughout all of Jewish and Christian history, only men have been ordained to represent the God of Scripture. The reason most of the saints give for this is that “he” symbolizes the divine transcendence. God is other than and more than nature and human souls; and God comes into nature and into human souls from without, from himself, from Heaven. He is not within us automatically, by nature. He is not a part of human nature, like thoughts and feelings, and he is not a part of the natural universe, as planets are, or as the pagan gods were thought to be.All human souls are feminine to God, he impregnates them with new life, as he performs miracles in nature; for this God is not “Mother Nature” but is “other” than nature, as a man is other than a woman. There is surely a connection between the two historical facts that throughout the ancient world a) all Gentile religions, polytheistic or pantheistic, had goddesses and priestesses, and b) that these religions did not have knowledge of the divine transcendence or of the doctrine of creation in the proper sense of the word
  2. The demand is also local. It is limited to Western Europe and North America. It is almost as limited in space as it is in historical time.
  3. And the demand is secular. It is derived from secular feminism, with its language of “demands” and “rights.” Anyone who demands ordination for “empowerment” shows a radical misunderstanding of the priesthood. Christ’s priesthood, like Christ, is for service, not power (see Jn 13:12-15; Mt 20:20-28). And anyone who demands it as a “right” is also using a radically different set of categories – legal and political ones – than those of Christ.“No one has a right to receive the sacrament of Holy Orders.Indeed no one claims this office for himself; he is called to it by God [cf. Heb 5:4]. Anyone who thinks he recognizes the signs of God’s call to the ordained ministry must humbly submit his desire to the authority of the Church . . . . Like every grace, this sacrament can be received only as an unmerited gift” (C 1578). God ordained two sexes, not one, to be equal in value, different in nature,and complementary in function. He created women to be a kind of priest that men cannot be; for motherhood is a kind of priesthood and mediation between God and the world. Every mother brings a new image of God into this world as the Blessed Mother brought God himself into this world.

I think that your professor is mixing his antisemitism with his anti-catholicism. I think on the first point he might be referring to the Jewish temple priesthood.

For some reason this post struck me as funny. :stuck_out_tongue:

Your teacher is a buffoon, and doesn’t know what he is talking about…:mad:

As lizanne said, in my blunt fashion, ask him to put up or shut up.

I would also point out that it has nothing to do with women somehow “contaminating” with menstruation, but the fact that a woman can never be a father.

I had many professors like this. I was an English major and you’d laugh at how many of my professors thought that a doctorate in literature made them an expert on Christianity and Theology. Sadly enough, a few were FAAAAAAR more short-sighted and uneducated than most of the students they were trying to enlighten. But, they stood up on tables or did other things to differentiate themselves from those “other” teachers in grade school and high school that had been spewing the same old same old at us for years, so of course they were right!

Women are not evil because of their menstrual cycle, only ritually unclean. And that is only for a few days. Check the Torah for details. No one seems to think that Paul meant it when he said women and men are equal in Christianity. That’s why women cannot be ordained in the Catholic church. Eventually they’ll figure it out.


The Apostle Paul never said that women were not equal in Christianity. What he did say, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that men and women have different roles.

**St. Paul did write that " there is no male and female…"

Galatians 3:28


Yup. :thumbsup:

Here is the verse, (in context).

23 Before faith came, we were held in custody under law, confined for the faith that was to be revealed.

24 Consequently, the law was our disciplinarian for Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a disciplinarian.

26 For through faith you are all children of God in Christ Jesus.

27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free person, there is not male and female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendant, heirs according to the promise.

Galatians 3:23-29 NAB

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