My wife has been reading The Protestants Dilemma and came across a comment about how some protestant churches wear veils and others don’t depending on whether they take this passage in the bible literally -1 Corinthians 11: 5-6. She noticed recently some Catholic women in mass recently were wearing one and wondered why Paul would command the Corinthian women to cover their heads and why we are not required today?
Another objection is based upon the transitory character that one claims to see today in some of the prescriptions of Saint Paul concerning women, and upon the difficulties that some aspects of his teaching raise in this regard. But it must be noted that these ordinances, probably inspired by the customs of the period, concern scarcely more than disciplinary practices of minor importance, such as the obligation imposed upon women to wear a veil on their head (1 Cor 11:2-16); such requirements no longer have a normative value.
The Church understands St. Paul’s words to be similar to when he talks about the length of men’s hair (1 Cor 11:14), in other words, he was addressing cultural norms and not moral absolutes. Note that verse 16 explicitly talks about customs.
For example, imagine in the 18th century a detailed writing was made of appropriate clothing for Mass. Would it make more sense to completely transpose those norms to modern society or to adapt them?