RCIA member. Chapel Veil...


#1

I am in RCIA.

I am a young, married woman of the age 25. Online, I have came across beautiful chapel veils that I have been eyeing, hoping to get one someday after I become an official catholic :)

During RCIA a few days ago, I told them what I just told you - and asked if that was okay. I was told that wearing a chapel veil, being a young woman and a new Catholic would be grossly improper, it's outdated and it's only acceptable for older Catholic women who grew up that way to still wear it. :eek:

Now, to be fair, this particular parish is only a few years old and I live in a very Mormon area, and also I haven't ever seen anyone wear a chapel veil but I thought it was more of an old school tradition, but that it was still openly optional. I don't see why it would be "grossly improper". My heart kind of sank because deep down I was waiting to wear a veil. But oh well I guess. However, the woman who told me this grew up Catholic in NY state.:shrug:

My sponsor who is an older woman, (but went through RCIA a few years ago...she used to be Mormon) whispered to me "I've seen women wear veils on Christmas and Easter" kind of to dispell the "grossly improper" wording.

I also was told that we are strongly discouraged to not go down on our knees when taking communion. The reasoning was because it is distracting and not in uniform. However, when I've watched EWTN I've seen quite a few people receive the bread on their knees.

I don't know...I guess I'm a little disappointed. Not really about going down on my knees, but about the veil. Could it be just this church? Diocese? Or just the opinion of the woman about the chapel veils?

Any thoughts? (especially about the chapel veil). Do you think it's okay to wear a modest veil to mass? The woman who answered my question was leading the class, but not a weekly RCIA teacher.


#2

The change in the rules was that we were no longer required to cover our heads, not that we were forbidden from covering them.

There is nothing at all wrong with wearing a chapel veil if that is your wish. It's not my thing but, hey, I grew up when covering was mandatory and was not sorry to see the law go. Although, when mantillas became the style in the early 60s, I wanted one - not for piety but for fashion and to do what the teenagers did. I never did own one, little triangular kerchiefs were cheaper and could be worn everywhere so that's what I was given.


#3

The woman who told you that it was "grossly improper" should be ashamed of herself. Women covering their heads in temple/church is an ancient Jewish tradition that continued in the Catholic Church for two thousand years until the 20th century.

It is no longer required but still very commendable.


#4

[quote="xflaxen, post:1, topic:308241"]
I am in RCIA.

I am a young, married woman of the age 25. Online, I have came across beautiful chapel veils that I have been eyeing, hoping to get one someday after I become an official catholic :)

During RCIA a few days ago, I told them what I just told you - and asked if that was okay. I was told that wearing a chapel veil, being a young woman and a new Catholic would be grossly improper, it's outdated and it's only acceptable for older Catholic women who grew up that way to still wear it. :eek:

Now, to be fair, this particular parish is only a few years old and I live in a very Mormon area, and also I haven't ever seen anyone wear a chapel veil but I thought it was more of an old school tradition, but that it was still openly optional. I don't see why it would be "grossly improper". My heart kind of sank because deep down I was waiting to wear a veil. But oh well I guess. However, the woman who told me this grew up Catholic in NY state.:shrug:

My sponsor who is an older woman, (but went through RCIA a few years ago...she used to be Mormon) whispered to me "I've seen women wear veils on Christmas and Easter" kind of to dispell the "grossly improper" wording.

I also was told that we are strongly discouraged to not go down on our knees when taking communion. The reasoning was because it is distracting and not in uniform. However, when I've watched EWTN I've seen quite a few people receive the bread on their knees.

I don't know...I guess I'm a little disappointed. Not really about going down on my knees, but about the veil. Could it be just this church? Diocese? Or just the opinion of the woman about the chapel veils?

Any thoughts? (especially about the chapel veil). Do you think it's okay to wear a modest veil to mass? The woman who answered my question was leading the class, but not a weekly RCIA teacher.

[/quote]

It's just the opinion of the woman (which I think is improper). The Church doesn't forbid the wearing of mantillas.


#5

You know the phrase, “Lead me, follow me, or get the heck out of my way!”…

Options 2 and 3 are looking pretty good.


#6

My great gran and gran still wear mantillas to Mass. If any of their female relatives attend Mass with them, the oldies insist on us wearing a head veil. I don't mind but I have been doing so with them regularly for 18years or so.

When I attend Mass weekly on my own I don't wear a mantilla.

However, when I attended Mass at St Peters and at the Holy Sepulchre and Church of Nativity, I wore a head veil.

Either way is acceptable, Vatican II did not ban it, it simply made it optional.


#7

I wear a hat , not a veil/mantilla, every time I set foot in a place where Jesus is present in the Blessed Sacrament .

It is a matter of personal piety now whether a woman covers her head or not, but there is certainly nothing improper about it.


#8

You don't have to wait until you are received into the Church to wear a headcovering. It is a Church disipline that was present from Apostolic times (1Cor11). I wore a scarve over my head in my brief fundamentalist Protestant stage because it was scriptural. I was still in the process of working out exactly what the Apostle Paul meant in the passage.

The wearing of a headcovering is no longer binding on women. The Church as the living authority has made this clear. It is not banned now, just optional, and as such a private devotion. While most people are neutral, some take extremes; On one side, that all women should cover; And on the other that no women should cover. Just avoid these extremes and cover if you wish.

I have seen people receive our Lord on their knees, gentuflecting, and the standard bowing of the head. I go to the local Parish and our Cathedral and no one seems to have a problem with these ways of receiving, or with those covering.

Since you have been discouraged in RCIA from kneeling, if you wish to do so you should speak to your Pastor about this.


#9

[quote="anonymous_in_fl, post:7, topic:308241"]
I wear a hat , not a veil/mantilla, every time I set foot in a place where Jesus is present in the Blessed Sacrament .

It is a matter of personal piety now whether a woman covers her head or not, but there is certainly nothing improper about it.

[/quote]

This is the same thought I have. I do not 'cover' regularly but when I do I usually wear a hat or scarf not a lace mantilla. The rule was never that one had to wear a veil but just to cover your head/hair.

In your case you might want to begin to wear a hat. After all it is winter and a cloche or Barrett would be a head cover without being obtrusive. We aren't doing this to call attention to ourselves or to be romantic, but to show humility before God.


#10

I don't mean to generalize about your RCIA class' quality, but your instructor (who told you not to veil) is giving you her big old opinion, nothing more. The only thing that has changed is that the *requirement *to veil was not included in the 1983 Code of Canon Law.

My wife has been wearing a veil to church and kneeling for Holy Communion since college. I think its a beautiful kind of devotion to Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.

We recently found a parish where upwards of 2/3s of the ladies wear a head covering. Don't be discouraged. My advice is to prayerfully and humbly go forward with your inclination to veil.


#11

With due respect, the woman was wrong. And yes, she was giving her (wrong) opinion, not the Church’s teaching.


#12

As another poster mentioned, veiling is an ancient Jewish tradition that Christianity has adopted and maintained (See 1 Corinthians 11: 1-17). The 1917 Code of Canon Law required women to cover their heads and, to my knowledge, has not been revoked. Unfortunately, among many Catholic women, this requirement has been forgotten or ignored. You needn’t be a Catholic to veil in the presence of the sanctuary either. Any woman can (or, rather, should) veil in the nave/sanctuary of a Catholic church.

Kneeling to receive Our Lord in Holy Communion on the tounge, is actually the preferred way to receive. The Catholic Church in the United States (unfortunately) has special permission from the Holy See to divert from this preferred traditional form. You should never be encouraged to receive Communion in the hands and/or standing, but you are allowed to do so in the United States. You can not be forbidden to receive Communion on your tounge and while kneeling, nor should you be condemned for doing so.

Please, listen to these two wonderful videos to see what Francis Cardinal Arinze had to say as Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments. He explains what the Holy See really permits/does not permit in this matter…youtube.com/watch?v=Ap1KL2D5ae4 youtube.com/watch?v=Cc0g3UMRtMM

Again, you can not be forbidden to receive Communion on your tounge and while kneeling, nor should you be condemned for doing so.


#13

[quote="Tantum_ergo, post:11, topic:308241"]
With due respect, the woman was wrong. And yes, she was giving her (wrong) opinion, not the Church's teaching.

[/quote]

That's pretty much it in a nutshell! Sounds like a great opportunity for education. I would be prepared for questions from curious parishioners and have charitable answers ready. Through prayer and your good example God may use you to help others understand this beautiful and reverent custom.

I would also be prepared for those that may spout things like the answer you already received. Just let it be "water on a duck's back." Trust me, the less you act insulted by any similar comments the more she may re-think them.


#14

The 1917 Code of Canon Law was revoked in its entirety by the 1983 Code of Canon Law. The current Code of Canon Law does not require women to cover their heads, so women who do not do so are not forgetting nor ignoring canon law.


#15

[quote="xflaxen, post:1, topic:308241"]
I am in RCIA.

I am a young, married woman of the age 25. Online, I have came across beautiful chapel veils that I have been eyeing, hoping to get one someday after I become an official catholic :)

During RCIA a few days ago, I told them what I just told you - and asked if that was okay. I was told that wearing a chapel veil, being a young woman and a new Catholic would be grossly improper, it's outdated and it's only acceptable for older Catholic women who grew up that way to still wear it. :eek:

Now, to be fair, this particular parish is only a few years old and I live in a very Mormon area, and also I haven't ever seen anyone wear a chapel veil but I thought it was more of an old school tradition, but that it was still openly optional. I don't see why it would be "grossly improper". My heart kind of sank because deep down I was waiting to wear a veil. But oh well I guess. However, the woman who told me this grew up Catholic in NY state.:shrug:

My sponsor who is an older woman, (but went through RCIA a few years ago...she used to be Mormon) whispered to me "I've seen women wear veils on Christmas and Easter" kind of to dispell the "grossly improper" wording.

I also was told that we are strongly discouraged to not go down on our knees when taking communion. The reasoning was because it is distracting and not in uniform. However, when I've watched EWTN I've seen quite a few people receive the bread on their knees.

I don't know...I guess I'm a little disappointed. Not really about going down on my knees, but about the veil. Could it be just this church? Diocese? Or just the opinion of the woman about the chapel veils?

Any thoughts? (especially about the chapel veil). Do you think it's okay to wear a modest veil to mass? The woman who answered my question was leading the class, but not a weekly RCIA teacher.

[/quote]

They are wrong.

Both are your choices. Neither is mandatory, but neither is forbidden.

Rome has ruled that no priest can deny communion to someone who chooses to kneel. If fact, at his public masses, all people who receive from the Pope kneel.

God Bless


#16

[quote="AnnArbor, post:14, topic:308241"]
The 1917 Code of Canon Law was revoked in its entirety by the 1983 Code of Canon Law. The current Code of Canon Law does not require women to cover their heads, so women who do not do so are not forgetting nor ignoring canon law.

[/quote]

Please know, I am not condemning anyone for not veiling. I am however in defense of women who are condemned, ridiculed, or made to feel awkward for veiling or desiring to veil.

In contradiction to your statement... According to the 1983 Code of Canon Law, Canon 20: A later law abrogates or derogates from an earlier law, if it expressly so states, or if it is directly contrary to that law, or if it integrally reorders the whole subject matter of the earlier law. A universal law, however, does not derogate from a particular or from a special law, unless the law expressly provides otherwise. * Canon 21; * In doubt, the revocation of a previous law is not presumed; rather, later laws are to be related to earlier ones and, as far as possible, harmonized with them.

Since the covering of a woman's head is not mentioned in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, it would seem there is no reason to attest its revocation.


#17

[quote="AnnArbor, post:14, topic:308241"]
The 1917 Code of Canon Law was revoked in its entirety by the 1983 Code of Canon Law. The current Code of Canon Law does not require women to cover their heads, so women who do not do so are not forgetting nor ignoring canon law.

[/quote]

You and the poster you are quoting are both right--and wrong.

The code was not 'revoked in its entirety'. Many of the 1917 codes were 'reiterated' in the 1983 Code --not revoked.

The point of contention is whether a former code is 'revoked' if it is not explicitly 'reiterated' in the later code. And you can have canon lawyers arguing both sides. Some say yes and some say no.

As I understand it, there has not been a real formal statement from the Church.

So again, as I understand it, one can continue to cover. It is certainly not wrong to do so.

And until/unless the point is totally cleared up (and it will be, in time), one is free NOT to cover. However, the reason one does not cover would NOT be in thinking that covering was 'old fashioned', or 'wrong'. . .the reason would be, "I do not feel called to cover at this time".

And the reason to cover would NOT be, "I'm HOLIER if I cover". The reason would be, "I feel called to cover at this time."


#18

[quote="Tantum_ergo, post:17, topic:308241"]
As I understand it, there has not been a real formal statement from the Church.

So again, as I understand it, one can continue to cover. It is certainly not wrong to do so.

And until/unless the point is totally cleared up (and it will be, in time), one is free NOT to cover. However, the reason one does not cover would NOT be in thinking that covering was 'old fashioned', or 'wrong'. . .the reason would be, "I do not feel called to cover at this time".

[/quote]

Yes, agreed, there is absolutely no reason why one can not veil. My point is, it was never revoked in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, it was simply not addressed. This subject's omission has left room for speculation. I still believe that the requirement to veil is technically still in place. Again, please know, I am in no way against those who do not veil.


#19

I should have used the verb abrogated. The 1917 Code of Canon Law was abrogated. Some of its canons were indeed reiterated in the new Code.

I am not suggesting that women should not feel free to cover their heads, and certainly not that they should be mocked for doing so. However, it is also important to understand that women who choose not to do so are not in some way spiritually deficient or that they are “forgetting or ignoring” a requirement of the Church.


#20

[quote="AnnArbor, post:19, topic:308241"]
I should have used the verb abrogated. The 1917 Code of Canon Law was abrogated. Some of its canons were indeed reiterated in the new Code.

I am not suggesting that women should not feel free to cover their heads, and certainly not that they should be mocked for doing so. However, it is also important to understand that women who choose not to do so are not in some way spiritually deficient or that they are "forgetting or ignoring" a requirement of the Church.

[/quote]

That is absolutely correct.


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