What Happened To The Headcovering?

Women went to church covering their heads from the beginning of time. To cover your head in mass means you want to be subservient to Christ.

Why not men? I believe it is because God made man in his image. Women was made for man. the man represents Christ in his family… woe to the man who does not take this seriously because when he doesnt the whole family suffers.

There is nothing by the Magisterium stating that the wearing of the veil has been abolished. As a matter of fact in the new Code of Cannon Law published in 1983 was the first time the veil was just left out. neither comfirming or denying anything on this matter. in Can.21 we read: In doubt, the revocation of a previous law is not presumed; rather, later laws are to be related to earlier ones, as far as possible, harmonized with them.

i hear often “it is only a piece of cloth”. i read a very good comparison on this i would like to share. when one looks at the their countries flag, and you think of alllll the men and women who have died serving, protecting, what your country stands for, one is often filled with pride and confidence.
now what does one think when we see someone taking that flag and deficating on it and burning it. now picture that person telling you…“chill out dude, its just a piece of cloth”.
If a women’s headcovering, be it hat or mantilla, is an outward sign of catholics as a whole being humible for Christ why would a women not wear her headcovering with pride? Why do women not want to carry on such a beautiful Catholic tradition?

I heard growing up that women did not participate in mass before vatican II. Now I see women had a much bigger role than they were ever giving themselves credit for.

At Mass & Prayer my head covering is on my head where it belongs. My granddaughters is usually half on and half off as she is a very active five years old and duct tape does not work.:wink:

Why not men? I believe it is because God made man in his image. Women was made for man. the man represents Christ in his family… woe to the man who does not take this seriously because when he doesnt the whole family suffers.

Actually, there are various types of liturgical headgear Catholic, Orthodox, and Non-Chalcedonian clergy (all males) wear: mitres, birette, zuchetti, klobuki, alousi…

There is nothing by the Magisterium stating that the wearing of the veil has been abolished. As a matter of fact in the new Code of Cannon Law published in 1983 was the first time the veil was just left out. neither comfirming or denying anything on this matter. in Can.21 we read: In doubt, the revocation of a previous law is not presumed; rather, later laws are to be related to earlier ones, as far as possible, harmonized with them.

While you were thumbing through the 1983 code, did you happen to run across the canon that said that the Code of 1917, which required women to cover their heads, was officially abrogated?

I’m referring in particular to Canon 6, reproduced below for your convenience.

Can. 6 §1 When this Code comes into force, the following are abrogated:

1° the Code of Canon Law promulgated in 1917;

2° other laws, whether universal or particular, which are contrary to the provisions of this Code, unless it is otherwise expressly provided in respect of particular laws;

3° all penal laws enacted by the Apostolic See, whether universal or particular, unless they are resumed in this Code itself;

4° any other universal disciplinary laws concerning matters which are integrally reordered by this Code.

§2 To the extent that the canons of this Code reproduce the former law, they are to be assessed in the light also of canonical tradition.

Obviously, the venerable custom of women covering their heads cannot be construed to be forbidden, but on the other hand, it clearly cannot be said to be required by the Canons of 1983 by any means.

Really?

Wow. Never heard that before. And, never experienced that in all my years as a (cradle) Catholic.

Where does that idea come from? Thanks for any help! If this is true we really have a LOT of work cut our for us!

On the contrary. The CDF in Inter Insignores in fact referred to the venerable custom of covering one’s head as having ‘no normative value’ - in other words no status as a prescriptive norm or rule. So it couldn’t fall within the ‘immemorial custom’ exception, or have any other status which would allow it to continue as binding obligation after promulgation of the 1983 Code.

we know women were covering their heads from the very beginning of Christianity because Paul admonishes the women concerning the veil in 1 Corinthians 11. in the Jerome Bible Commentary it explains why St Paul did this:
"Some Christian women, influenced perhaps by the liberal atmosphere of cosmopolitan Corinth and emboldened by the attitude of the “the knowledgeable” toward their freedoms, were attending the assemblies without wearing a veil. Paul reprobates this behavior as unbecoming to a woman, because God has established a hierarchical subordination of the women should be recognized in her behavior and dress. the veil is a symbol of this subordination.

This makes me ask myself, that even if the Church said we do not have to wear our veils, which I can not find any proof of, do we have a moral obligation to wear them?

My friend and I went to a tridentine mass. Off to the side in the vestibule, they had a basket with mantillas with a small sign that read “Barrow One”. I placed a veil on my head and my friend teased a bit saying i looked “holier than thou”. A wise women came to my defense and asked, “Isnt it better to be “holier than thou” than “worldlier than thou”?” She really had me pondering from then on. From that moment on I have been researching on this topic.

that would fly if women quit wearing their veils in 1983. however women in the 60’s not wearing their veils or hats and were actually burning their mantillas in the 70’s much less wearing them. it would seem more accurate to say that the church saw a movement that they did not want to take on in the mist of their own new modern movement in the 60’s.

When I was growing up getting all dressed up meant wearing a hat; today it doesn’t in white American culture. And a head covering isn’t required by the church. However, it does have some significance.

My attitude is don’t judge others on what they wear in church. I don’t assume that someone wearing a veil is judging me for not doing so. I also don’t assume they are trying to appear super-religious.

Unity in essentials, diversity in non-essentials, in all things charity.

that would fly if women quit wearing their veils in 1983. however women in the 60’s not wearing their veils or hats and were actually burning their mantillas in the 70’s much less wearing them. it would seem more accurate to say that the church saw a movement that they did not want to take on in the mist of their own new modern movement in the 60’s.

And you think this means that the requirement for women to cover their heads in the 1917 code was NOT abrogated in the 1983 code?

Canon 6 says the 1917 code was abrogated–and it was promulagated with the authority of the Aposotlic See.

You say it was not.

Who’s right?

While in very ancient times there is no record of the veil being codified in a system of law [except for a probably apocryphal decree of Pope Linus, (1) the explanation for this absence is fairly predictable. The time was so remote and so troubled that it is a wonder that any of its writings came down to us at all. We cannot expect each minute decree of every leader to remain in existence, clear and intact, over the course of nearly 2,000 very tumultuous years. For the behavior of women at that period of time, we can rely only on the traditions that have been passed down to us, which clearly mandate the practice of the veil. For the practices of less remote ages, however, some laws for our guidance have survived. [size=2]1.J. P. Kirsch, “Linus, Pope Saint,” in The Catholic Encyclopedia[/size]. Viewed on 29 April 2004. Of particular interest is The Code of Canon Law, the norms of which are binding on all Catholics. From 1917 until 1983, The Code of Canon Law of 1917 was in force throughout the Church; it contained many regulations which were not renewed in the new *Code *promulgated in 1983. One of those regulations was on head coverings in Church, addressed to both men and women.

Men, of course, were required to appear with “a naked head,” (2) except when “the tested customs of the people or the accompanying peculiarity of things bears otherwise.” (3) For women, however, the regulation is considerably more stringent. There are no exceptions made for women; they simply must wear the veil. [size=2]2. “[N]udo capite,” *Codex Iuris Canonici */size, Canon 1262, § 2 at geocities.com/catholic_profide/codex.htm. Viewed on 29 April 2004.
3. “[N]isi aliud ferant probati populorum mores aut peculiaria rerum adiuncta.” Codex Iuris Canonici, 1917. The Code does not give reasons for its mandate; it is simply a statement of rules, not a justification of them. However, it is unambiguous that, until 1983, the laws of the Church required women to wear the veil at least in churches. The Code states clearly that women, while “in a church or while assisting with the sacred rites outside of a church” ought to appear “with the head entirely covered … especially when they approach the Lord ’s Table.” (4) There are no exceptions, no “unless” clauses. That was simply the law of the Church. [size=2]4. “*n ecclesia vel extra ecclesia, dum sacris ritibus assistunt…mulieres autem, capite cooperto [sint]…maxime cum ad mensam Dominicam accedunt.” *Codex Iuris Canonici **/size, Canon 1262, § 2. Moreover, the Code sounds much like St. John Chrysostom, requiring the head to be “completely covered,” not simply partially concealed. Most authors have used the word “velare, ” which means simply “to cover,” to refer to woman’s obligations to cover themselves. The Code, however, used the word “cooperire,” which has a much stronger meaning, referring to a total covering of its object.

Lest I assume too strong an interpretation of this word, I note that the custom at the time of the Code’s promulgation and thereafter consisted not of a complete covering, but simply a hat or mantilla that concealed at least the top and usually most of the hair, and that the Church made no effort to alter this custom after the promulgation of the Code.

I can conclude, then, that the use of the stronger word was most likely to discourage the practice of a covering that is next to useless but still fulfils the precept of having something on the head, following the letter rather than the spirit. The Church is ever watchful for such legalism, for as St. Paul tells us, “the letter killeth, but the spirit quickenet.” (II Corinthians 3:6).

Many, however, will view these dates with confusion. Surely 1983 is not the correct year, they might object, since that was nearly 20 years after the Second Vatican Council. And was it not the recent Council that did away with such archaic practices as Latin in the Mass, the churching of women, and the wearing of the veil?

The date, however, is correct; this law was fully in force until 1983, when the new Code of Canon Law was promulgated (and this Code simply omits any mention of the veil). The veil fell out of practice, however, in the mid-1960s, lasting in some places until the promulgation of the new Missal but dying out shortly thereafter. Does this really mean that for nearly 20 years most Catholic women were in violation of valid ecclesiastical law?

Yes, it does. The individual culpability of these women is totally beyond my or anyone’s ability to state, and I will consequently make no attempt to do so. There are too many factors that may have played into their decision, including ignorance of the law itself, which may have reduced or eliminated their personal guilt. Their culpability is not in question here.
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this was not a question to be judgmental. its about questioning if we are supposed to be covering our heads. as cluny mentioned there is a confusing period there in our church history on the subject.
we have all had to run to church by the seat of pants once or twice. however, i do believe that if our priests will not tell someone who is dressed immodestly or look like they rolled out of bed every Sunday on a regular basis then maybe we do have an obligation to Christ to mention it. when we go to someones home we respect their rules and how they want things done. church shouldnt be any different.

Although I can’t find a source, I believe that the practice came from Paul’s letter which was misinterpeted by Jerome from Greek into Latin.
Peace
FAB

as cluny mentioned there is a confusing period there in our church history on the subject.

I never said “there is a confusing period in our church history on the subject.” Why did you calim I did?

I said that it is simply NOT required by canons for women to do so.

when we go to someones home we respect their rules and how they want things done. church shouldnt be any different.

And there is no canon (which means “rule,” btw) requiring women to cover their heads now.

Deal with it.

This subject always ends in a fight over the issue. Most of us that cover do so for private reasons between God and ourselves, at least that is the situation with those women and girls that I know.

Why is there never an issue over the men wearing suits or jeans or shorts? How about flip flops-v-dress shoes?

There was a thread a while back on modesty for men (or some such title) that dealt with those sort of topics - it absolutely degenerated into a fight between the suit-n-tie guys and the wear-whatevers-comfortable-unless-it’s-immodest brigade, let me tell you!

sorry cluny you are right. you did not say that there was confusion. i mistyped what i meant to say. i meant to say that it was a confusing time for the women of the church but my mind wandered and it got typed wrong.

however, up a few threads, i have the canon law that disputes what you are saying. and even if you are right there is moral law that should come before canon law… its right in the bible explaining very clearly in the new testament.

and by the way i am dealing with it… i wear my veil every sunday with great pride because i know what it stands for. most women believe it is a sign of being subservient to man. its not, its a symbol of being subservient to Christ.

Please understand that nothing I say is to be interpreted as a criticism of women who do cover their heads. In fact, I’d like to see the practice resumed, though lack of a veil should not become an excuse not to go to church. But that’s for a woman herself to be convinced of.

As regarding shoes, I have gout and other problems, and my feet often well up badly. I usually wear neat black sports shoes with velcro closures.

And I used to look disfavorably on people who wore sunglasses indoors, and especially to church. Then I suffered cataracts, and for an extended period, I had to wear sunglasses whenever I went out, even at Liturgy, so I’ve softened my opinion about that. Maybe some are trying to make fashion statements, but charity demands I assume they all have eye trouble.

In Arizona with the summer heat (it’s already over 100), dress standards, even for church, are looser than in other parts of the country.

Just another opinion:

I am in a Bible Study and we just discussed this using “Adventures in 1 Corinthians” by Dr. Tim Gray. In this passage, he says that Paul never uses the Greek word for “veil” and what has been translated as “veil” is better translated in terms of hairsytle.

At that time, according to Dr. Gray, married women wore their hair braided and up as a sign of their committment. Temple prostitutes, especially, wore it down and unbraided as a sign they were “open for business”. Also during feasts/orgies to the pagan idols, women would “let their hair down” or “uncover their heads” as they became enthralled with the pagan services.

His argument appears to be that we can’t clearly determine if a Paul is talking about a literal piece of cloth or a way of wearing the hair that signifies modesty and control.

You can find some similar comments on the web, I believe.

YES ! Their hair was their glory (and their advertising). I just don’t get this obsession with the head covering argument. Women covered their hair then just as they covered their bodies. Goodness, there were times a couple hundred years ago when it would have been scandalous to show an ankle. Wear one or not but let’s not make it into something it isn’t.

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