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Author Topic: On Modesty of Women in Church  (Read 7621 times) Average Rating: 0
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sinjinsmythe
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« on: December 17, 2002, 01:04:22 PM »

I found this article at the ROCOR cafe and I decided to post it as it is a very interesting article.  I agree totally with what the author has stated.  Here it is below:

On Modesty of Women in Church
by Reader Nathan Williams via Internet transmission

It seems that more and more often we see young women standing in church who, contrary to the explicit teachings and traditions of the Orthodox Church, are wearing immodest clothing, lipstick and no head coverings. At the St. Herman's youth conference last year, for instance, the clothing many of the young women were wearing was bordering on skin tight, and it seemed that only about half the young women had scarves or hats on.

Perhaps they feel that wearing simple, modest clothing, no lipstick and a scarf makes them, somehow, less attractive. But less attractive to whom? The answer is simple: Orthodox young men. Being one myself, perhaps I can offer an opinion from our perspective. To begin with, let us consider women not covering their heads.

To an Orthodox young man who is devoted to serving God and the Church, it is far more appealing to see a young woman wearing a scarf in accordance with God’s law than to see one putting aside obedience to the Church in order to look more "attractive." When we see a young woman standing in Church with no head covering, our first feeling is not one of admiration. The first thought that comes to mind is "Why on earth isn't she covering her head?" Our feelings may even be along the lines of "How immature!" or, "Doesn't she know any better?"

This is not a sexist attitude. The rules and ways of the world (political correctness, democracy, independence) do not and cannot apply to the Orthodox Church. We are simply filled with amazement and even sadness at the decision of so many of today's Orthodox young women to completely ignore this rule that has been in place since the time of Christ. Take, as an example of this teaching of the Church regarding women covering their heads, this excerpt from St. Paul's epistle to the Corinthians:

"I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband and the head of Christ is God. Any man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, but any woman who prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonors her head--it is the same as if her head were shaven. For if a woman will not veil herself, then she should cut off her hair; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her wear a veil. For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. (For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman but woman for man.) That is why a woman ought to have a veil on her head, because of the angels." (1 Cor., 11: 3-11)

The ideas of obedience and humility are foreign in today's world, but they are an essential part of the way of life for Orthodox Christians.

Another thing that is seen more and more frequently is the wearing of immodest clothing by many of today's Orthodox young women. Some of the things young women wear today in the temple of God are utterly appalling. Shirts and dresses are often nearly skin tight, the necks of dresses and shirts are cut very low, and skirts are extremely short. Some skirts and dresses being worn in church today are literally so tight fitting that if a young woman wearing one were to bend over and touch the ground as is customary when venerating the icons, the skirt would rip in two. This is often enough to make many young men look away in embarrassment. Or what is worse, they are not able to look away, or simply do not. This kind of attire is a great distraction to both men and women who have come to the church to pray, not to admire the bodies of the young women. A young person's body should be reserved for their future spouse and for him or her alone, and for a young woman to flaunt her body this way, especially in the temple of our Lord, is to bring shame on both her and her future husband. In a homily on St. Paul's first epistle to Timothy, especially concerning this verse, "Therefore I desire that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting; in like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing..." (I Tim., 2: 8-9), St. John Chrysostom writes:

'That women adorn themselves in modest apparel.’ "But what is this modest apparel? Such attire as covers them completely and decently, not with superfluous ornaments, for the one is becoming, the other is not... Do you approach God to pray with braided hair and ornaments of gold? Are you coming to a dance, to a marriage, to a merry procession? ... You have come to pray, to supplicate for pardon of your sins, to plead for your offenses, beseeching the Lord, and hoping to render him propitious to you ...For is it not acting to pour forth tears from a soul overgrown with extravagance and ambition? Away with such hypocrisy! God is not mocked! This is the attire of actors and dancers, living on the stage. Nothing of this sort becomes a modest woman, who should be adorned with shamefacedness and sobriety..." (St. John Chrysostom, Homilies VIII and IX on I Timothy II).

There is another factor to consider as well, and that is simply, what "market" are these young women appealing to? What sort of man are they hoping to appear attractive to by wearing tight clothing and not covering their heads? If a man would think worse of a young woman if she covers her head in accordance with the teachings of the Orthodox faith, is he really the kind of man she is looking for? Would she really want to develop a relationship with a young man who judges her by her looks?

And when a young man is thinking of marriage, one of the first things he considers is "What kind of a mother will she be to my children?" He wants a wife who will help him to bring up their children to be God-fearing, pious Orthodox Christians, who will serve the Church, obey God's commandments and listen to the teachings of the holy fathers. He wants to know if this young woman would be that kind of mother. What kind of answer to his question is he getting from the young woman who openly puts aside the customs of her fathers and the teachings of the Church? By behaving in this manner, what kind of opinion of herself is she forming in his mind? If a young woman does not obey the laws of the church herself, what are the chances that her children will? And if she does not respect the teachings of the church and the writings of the holy fathers, how can her children be expected to respect them, or their parents?

One last thing should be mentioned, and that is the wearing of lipstick. When women wear lipstick in the temple, it leaves ugly smudges on everything their lips touch: the holy icons, the cross, and even the priest's hand. I and many others have spent much time wiping these pink, lip-shaped smudges off the glass covering the icons of Christ, the Theotokos, and the saints. When St. John Maximovich was bishop of San Francisco, he would have an altar boy holding a towel standing nearby during the kissing of the cross. When a woman wearing lipstick would approach to venerate the cross, he would take the towel and wipe off her lips, in front of everyone, before he would let her kiss the cross, or sometimes he would not even allow her to venerate the cross.

I can assure you that although they may not openly criticize, pious and upright Orthodox young men have no feelings of admiration of a woman's open disregard of the rules of the church and the teachings of the holy fathers. We men have many failings, immodesty not being absent from them; therefore when we marry, we look for someone who will help us to overcome those failings. And when we see a girl or young woman who cover
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« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2002, 01:10:39 PM »

Where does this guy go to Church, where seeing women without headcoverings shocks him??  I haven't seen more than 20 women wear headcoverings in Church ever in all the churches I have visited, except when I was in India, where not all the women do it either.

1) I agree that lipstick is bad at church.

2) I don't agree that he should be judging women who don't wear headcoverings.  It's not his business.

3) I haven't seen a woman with a headcovering in an Orthodox Church in a long time (except a few much older women and one convert I know) and it doesn't shock or scandalize me.  Do I wish they'd follow St. Paul's advice? Yes. Will I say something to them? No.  Let the priest do it.

4) What does wearing a headcovering have to do with attraction!  Shame on that man for checking out women during a Church service! haha

In Christ,

anastasios
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Dan Lauffer
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« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2002, 03:04:31 PM »

Anastosios,

I usually agree with you but not on this one.  Modesty is much more important than you think.  It is a grave mistake for women or men to wear clothing that is immodest especially in Church and for the reasons that this young man suggests.  

I applaud this young man's courage to stand on these principles and he will one day find a woman who honors them.  If more young men would seek women of nobility then more women would be noble.  If more young women sought men of nobility then more men would be noble as well.

Dan Lauffer
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« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2002, 05:59:02 PM »

I resent how this kind of criticism is always directed at women.  Men can be immodest too.  It's very easy for men to criticize women for being 'immodest' or for not covering our heads in church when you don't have to wear hose and high heels and skirts.  It's not comfortable, believe me.  

I follow the norm in the church that I'm attending.  If I go to the traditional latin Mass I wear my mantilla.  If I attend the Orthodox Church I wear a dress but don't cover my head.  If I attend the Novus Ordo, I wear jeans or even <shock!> shorts during the summer.  Sometimes I'll look around the congregation at the latin Mass and wonder if I'm among an Amish community because frankly it looks a little funny to see all of the women in long lace mantillas.  Back in the day when all women covered their heads in church, most women wore fashionable hats.  It wasn't such a change from the normal way of dressing.  

Since you all appear to be men, I'm sure you're not aware what a pain it is to wear a mantilla.  The little chapel veils won't stay on without a bobby pin.  The larger mantillas will stay on without a bobby pin as long as you don't move your head around very much.  Honestly, I mess with the mantilla several times during Mass.  I've always thought those babuska scarves would be more practical since they're tied on.  Of course a hat would be best but who has hats anymore?  
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« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2002, 06:07:54 PM »

The headscarves are practical and look great — and culturally they’re very Orthodox. (See the pics of Iraqi women and of the 19th-century Russian family I have in rotation on my site’s front page.) I love seeing ’em in church.
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« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2002, 07:24:36 PM »

I resent how this kind of criticism is always directed at women.  Men can be immodest too.  It's very easy for men to criticize women for being 'immodest' or for not covering our heads in church when you don't have to wear hose and high heels and skirts.  It's not comfortable, believe me.

I agree men can be immodest too.  Who says you have to wear high heels and pantyhose? I have never understood a woman wearing high heels. Huh  Can't women find a decent dress shoe that is flat?  It won't do as much damage to your feet that high heels do.  And who says that a woman has to wear pantyhose, can't a woman were a long dress instead? One can dress comfortable and be modest at the same time(just ask any of the plainsclothes people).   Let me tell you Jennifer, it is not easy being a guy either especially nowadays when it seems like the showing the most skin is in.   It seems that modesty is a dead as a concept and whenever it is raised, one is either a prude or backwards or gets flamed by women as unfairly criticising them.   As for wearing the mantilla, I am not familar with the RC tradition.    Wouldn't wearing a scarf be easier Huh  I am not a Catholic so I don't really know.
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« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2002, 07:28:13 PM »

Dan,

I didn't say I supported immodesty.  I said that when women don't have head coverings it doesn't bother me (although I would hope they would consider St. Paul's advice on the matter).

I didn't say I thought it was ok for women to wear miniskirts to Church or that immodesty was ok.  I also don't think it is right for guys to go to Church dressed in a muscle shirt (I've seen it).

Jennifer,

Dan did say "men or women" but I do think you're right that the author of the article was focusing on women.

Serge,

I agree with you and would like to see it but my point is that I am not shocked when I see a "topless" girl in Church!

In Christ,

anastasios
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« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2002, 07:30:46 PM »

I follow the norm in the church that I'm attending.  If I go to the traditional latin Mass I wear my mantilla.  If I attend the Orthodox Church I wear a dress but don't cover my head.  If I attend the Novus Ordo, I wear jeans or even <shock!> shorts during the summer.

Jennifer, the way we dress in church shouldn't be based on the custom of the majority, but because we are approaching our Lord. We would dress in our best if having a job interview or meeting with a dignitary of another nation, so why shouldn't we show our creator at least the same respect as we would show a fellow human being?

Plus, when we dress immodestly, (especially in the Lord's House) scripture says that we share the sin of causing others to lust.
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« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2002, 08:33:23 PM »

Jennifer,

Quote
I resent how this kind of criticism is always directed at women.  Men can be immodest too.  It's very easy for men to criticize women for being 'immodest' or for not covering our heads in church when you don't have to wear hose and high heels and skirts.  It's not comfortable, believe me.

As a good RC priest once told me, "if tardiness and brutishness are a predominating flaw in men, immodesty is peculiarly so with women."  While it is true, particularly in our increasingly eroticized and pagan culture, that men can be immodest, let's be honest; for some time now this is more a problem with women, and I think it has to do with the way original sin manifests itself a little differently in the sexes.

As for your complaints about heels, why the heck would you wear those in a Church to begin with?  Buy flat shoes; my mother seems to find them, I don't see how you make it sound like such a rare and incredible thing to find comfortable shoes.  As for dresses that are loose and non-revealing; I only wish the old Roman custom of robes for men still prevailed!

Quote
I follow the norm in the church that I'm attending.

But what if that norm is ridiculously antagonistic to the teachings of the Church tradition?  I've been in houses of worship where the "norm" was shameful by any objective standard.

Quote
If I go to the traditional latin Mass I wear my mantilla.

Do you feel that Christ is less present at a Novus Ordo than a Tridentine Mass?  Or is this done just so you don't get dirty looks from people attending the Tridentine Mass?

Quote
Sometimes I'll look around the congregation at the latin Mass and wonder if I'm among an Amish community because frankly it looks a little funny to see all of the women in long lace mantillas.

Better "funny looking" than look like a hussy about to go hit the bars.  The Scriptures plainly state that vanity and lewd dress are pagan, and not befitting of Christians - that's in the New Testament as well, and not simply some left over of "barbarian" Judaic law.

Quote
Back in the day when all women covered their heads in church, most women wore fashionable hats.  It wasn't such a change from the normal way of dressing.

Because it was a more modest, Christian society.  Your whole argument thus far has hinged on relativistic thinking and comprimise with pagan fashion sense.  There was also an age where being a professing Christian in the typical workplace wouldn't get you snickers and cynicism; are we supposed to comprimise on this point as well, since it's no longer "easy" to live as practicing Christians?

Quote
Since you all appear to be men, I'm sure you're not aware what a pain it is to wear a mantilla.

Get a pin to keep it in (though my mother manages to wear hers just fine without it.)  Or better yet, go whole hog and put on a head scarf; you can tie those back, and having worn bandannas myself, I'm quite sure they're not uncomfortable.

Quote
Of course a hat would be best but who has hats anymore?

If you don't have one, and that's your thang, buy one.  You get after us "menfolk" for being so judgemental and inconsiderate of the "hardship" of being modest in the temple of God...but the reasons you're offering strike me (male chauvenist that I am) as being petty.

Seraphim - who suffers the intolerable hardship of (gasp) putting on a tie that ever so mildly (but oh so annoyingly) makes him feel "confined" every time he goes to Church...and don't even make me start about the suit jacket and leather loafers...
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« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2002, 12:13:13 AM »

As for your complaints about heels, why the heck would you wear those in a Church to begin with?  Buy flat shoes; my mother seems to find them, I don't see how you make it sound like such a rare and incredible thing to find comfortable shoes.  As for dresses that are loose and non-revealing; I only wish the old Roman custom of robes for men still prevailed!

I wear heels in church because heels are the appropriate shoes to wear with most dresses.  We're required to be 'modest' but not dowdy or unattractive.  BTW, comfortable women's dress shoes are a "rare and incredible thing to find."  

But what if that norm is ridiculously antagonistic to the teachings of the Church tradition?  I've been in houses of worship where the "norm" was shameful by any objective standard.

I'm a nice Catholic girl at heart.  I would never wear something my father would disapprove of.  So I personally won't show a lot of skin at Mass.  But I will wear jeans if that's acceptable attire.  I'll let my confessor decide if that's a terrible sin.  

Do you feel that Christ is less present at a Novus Ordo than a Tridentine Mass?  Or is this done just so you don't get dirty looks from people attending the Tridentine Mass?

I was raised to dress in a manner appropriate for the occasion.  It's simple politeness.  

Better "funny looking" than look like a hussy about to go hit the bars.  The Scriptures plainly state that vanity and lewd dress are pagan, and not befitting of Christians - that's in the New Testament as well, and not simply some left over of "barbarian" Judaic law.

We don't have to be unattractive or even unfashionable.  

Because it was a more modest, Christian society.  Your whole argument thus far has hinged on relativistic thinking and comprimise with pagan fashion sense.  There was also an age where being a professing Christian in the typical workplace wouldn't get you snickers and cynicism; are we supposed to comprimise on this point as well, since it's no longer "easy" to live as practicing Christians?

I'm not making any argument here.  I was merely making an observation and relating what I personally wear to church.  

You get after us "menfolk" for being so judgemental and inconsiderate of the "hardship" of being modest in the temple of God...but the reasons you're offering strike me (male chauvenist that I am) as being petty.

Nobody is after you 'menfolk.'  It just struck as funny to see a bunch of men discussing what women wear to church.  It also strikes me as funny that you bring your mother into the conversation.  I'm a young woman so I don't have to dress like your mother.  The Church does not require that I dress like an old lady.  It doesn't require that I cover up all of my physical attributes.  It requires that I be modest (and actually I dress modestly) but not unattractive.  I'm allowed to wear make-up.  I'm allowed to show my hair.  We're not Orthodox Jewish women required to cover every inch of our hair.  I don't have to wear a nun's habit.  I don't have to hide my figure because shapeless garments.  

BTW, I was not arguing that the 'hardships' of dressing modestly mean that we don't have to dress modestly.  I just thought that you guys might need a bit of education (especially if your mother is your only gauge of this issue) before you make any judgments.  

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« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2002, 12:30:43 AM »

The two best dressed women that have ever attended my college classes were young Muslim women.  They were sisters about 19 or 20 years old.  When asked why they wore the hijab (scarf) they said that they attended a Muslim meeting in which they learned that the hijab was a way to honor God and it kept them off the meat and meet market.

Excellent!  I agree completely.

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« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2002, 12:42:11 AM »

The two best dressed women that have ever attended my college classes were young Muslim women.  They were sisters about 19 or 20 years old.  When asked why they wore the hijab (scarf) they said that they attended a Muslim meeting in which they learned that the hijab was a way to honor God and it kept them off the meat and meet market.

Excellent!  I agree completely.

Dan Lauffer

But that's not the Christian way.  Traditional Christianity has never required that women cover themselves from head to toe.  Or even that we completely cover our hair.  We're not dualists.  We don't believe that matter is inherently evil.  God gave us a body.  He made men attracted to a women's body.  He made some women more attractive than others.  He doesn't require that a woman be completely covered up so no one can see what she looks like.  

A woman can be off the "meat market" scene even if a man sees her hair or her knees or god forbid her elbows or even <gasp!> that she has breasts and isn't wearing some shapeless asexual garment.  
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« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2002, 01:02:03 AM »

Jennifer,

It might be helpful if we stuck with the Biblical subject.  It avoids hyperbole.

Dan Lauffer
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« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2002, 03:07:33 AM »

Here the weather can be very hot sometimes and I have seen boys in shorts during the Orthodox Liturgy. I think it is a matter of heart and respect, not so much a matter of modesty. I haven't seen many women with covered heads.

I also think that the rejection of lipstick, for example, is an exageration (I mean, if it is a scandalous blue lipstick that some modern young ladies use, well, I agree that it is not correct).

I have also attended many "modern" catholic masses and I have seen that many people, at least here, do not dress as they should do in a church: men and women in shorts and sandals, and short dresses and miniskirts, men with caps. Only very elder women in small towns cover her heads (and the weather is not always hot).

It is not my buissness to say if Christ is less present in a Latin Mass or a modern one, but sometimes there are elements that can make up a sacred environment and enrich this sacred environment, and dressing reverently is an act of respect. I also think that clothes do not make the sacred environment but it is the sacred environment of the Divine Liturgy (or the Latin Mass, for example) the one which infuse respect and you immediately take a reverent attitude and fear of God and the thankful attitude to Him because of his gifts.

It is the loss of the sacred environment what generates disprespect (I mean, why would a girl think about wearing a mantilla and covering her hear, if pop music with guitars and dancing are taking place in the service, for example?)

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« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2002, 07:51:31 AM »

Remie,

Not wearing lipstick isn't an exaggeration as it literally ruins icons, and one is kissing the priest's hand and the blessing cross as well. There's just no need for it in the Liturgy.
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« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2002, 08:42:20 AM »

I have also attended many "modern" catholic masses and I have seen that many people, at least here, do not dress as they should do in a church:

You should see the tourists in Montreal (the city of churches), a class of homo sapiens I find almost as intolerable as politicians.

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« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2002, 09:39:42 AM »

I have also attended many "modern" catholic masses and I have seen that many people, at least here, do not dress as they should do in a church:

You should see the tourists in Montreal (the city of churches), a class of homo sapiens I find almost as intolerable as politicians.

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One does not have to go as far as Montreal, Samer.  On the way to my own Orthodox church in my less-than-tourist-attractive-city each Sunday, I must drive by a large Roman Catholic parish church which has mass at about the same time as our Divine Liturgy.  During the summer months I see *both* men and women inappropriately dressed for church (IMHO) getting out of their cars for RC mass: men in cut-offs and tank tops, women and young girls in halters and shorts or jeans (more appropriate for the beach).  The "casual" dress does not seem to be limited to any particular age group either.  The sense of reverence upon entering a sacred space seems to have been tossed out the window.

Next door to my church is a Black Protestant church where women dress very modestly and elegantly, even wearing hats for services.  Men are very dressed up in their best clothes too, most in suits and white shirts with ties.

When I arrive at my own church, most men are dressed in suits and ties, even in hot weather (we have *no* air-conditioning either), but in any case, *never* in shorts or T-shirts or the like, and women are modestly dressed (light-weight fabric dresses are popular in the summer), most without lipstick, though head-coverings seem to have gone out of fashion even here.  Very few women wear high heels--I've noticed that those that do are usually quite short in height.

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« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2002, 02:02:38 PM »

Not wearing lipstick isn't an exaggeration as it literally ruins icons, and one is kissing the priest's hand and the blessing cross as well. There's just no need for it in the Liturgy.

I agree with you Nick, there is no need for it in the liturgy.  

Next door to my church is a Black Protestant church where women dress very modestly and elegantly, even wearing hats for services.  Men are very dressed up in their best clothes too, most in suits and white shirts with ties.


Hypo this is a great observation.  I have noticed this too about Black churches. The men and women are dressed to the nines.  African-Americans seem to have a better reverence for God than us white folk sometimes.
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« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2002, 07:58:10 PM »

Hey I haven't though about it, that of the icons an lipstick, well yes you're right, lol Grin
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« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2002, 01:40:23 PM »

I can't believe I missed this discussion until it reached page 2.  Shame on me.

I think in a way this issue boils down to two different points.

1. Covering any flesh that may distract others from worship.
2. Preparing yourself for God as a bride adorns herself for the bridegroom.

Number one is easy to stipulate...women showing cleavage or men exposing ripped biceps and anyone no matter what their income level can dress modestly.

The second is more difficult in my humble opinion.  What is the best way to dress for God?  While long dresses have been with mankind since the dawn of humanity in a way I consider business suits to be one of the more pagan forms of dress.  I wear a suit to church occasionally(mostly on Pascha and Nativity) but less often as it feels I should be conducting a board meeting rather than worship God.   I find that wearing a sweater, polo, or button up flannel or solid shirt with slacks is more conducive to prayer.  I also am not vainly concerned with my appearance as I often am with a suit.  

As for women's dress in the church, I rejoice when a see a woman wearing a headcovering but I would never be so rude as to criticize other women for not wearing one.  If I decide to marry at some point, I would tell my wife that it would make me very happy for her to wear a headcovering in church.  We have a young woman(late 20s) at my church who often wears a scarf along with attractive long dresses.  To me she is more attractive than another young woman we have with above the knee skirts and a tight blouse.  I also do not have any problem with women wearing pants like some have.  In the 1950s it would have been wearing the garb of men but these days pants are appropiate for both sexes.

I think the key to this is to wear what we think is fitting to glorify God but not judge or condemn our fellow worshippers who don't wish to wear a suit.  It is good to dress well for God but like many good things we can dogmatize this good thing so it is a requirement and those who don't dress to our level we look down upon in vanity.  If this is the case it is a terrible reflection of Orthodox piety, especially towards inquirers.
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« Reply #20 on: December 21, 2002, 03:05:38 PM »

Quote
We have a young woman(late 20s) at my church who often wears a scarf along with attractive long dresses.  To me she is more attractive than another young woman we have with above the knee skirts and a tight blouse.  

Is she single?  If she is single, you should ask her out. Wink  She is definitely a rarity.  Someone once told me, if you see a cutie then bust a move.
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« Reply #21 on: December 21, 2002, 03:35:13 PM »

I've thought of it....she seems to have a non-orthodox boyfriend, though, and she's a bit out of my league.  She's a Chemistry professor with PhD at a local university and I'm still pursuing my undergrad studies.  Too intimidating for me right now.  But who knows what God wills so we'll see what happens.
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« Reply #22 on: December 21, 2002, 04:49:23 PM »

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I've thought of it....she seems to have a non-orthodox boyfriend, though, and she's a bit out of my league.  She's a Chemistry professor with PhD at a local university and I'm still pursuing my undergrad studies.  Too intimidating for me right now.

It seems like that's the way it always goes.  They always have boyfriends.  I know how it is...I have been in the same situation many a times in my life. Sad
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« Reply #23 on: December 21, 2002, 07:03:46 PM »

In addition, in our parish, anyone wearing lipstick and wanting to receive Communion must first wipe the lipstick off before receiving thereby elliminating the lipstick smudge on the Communion spoon. Wink

JoeS

Hey I haven't though about it, that of the icons an lipstick, well yes you're right, lol Grin
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« Reply #24 on: December 22, 2002, 03:27:43 AM »

In addition, in our parish, anyone wearing lipstick and wanting to receive Communion must first wipe the lipstick off before receiving thereby elliminating the lipstick smudge on the Communion spoon. Wink

JoeS

Hey I haven't though about it, that of the icons an lipstick, well yes you're right, lol Grin

That must really be a pain to the *guys* who have taken to wearing makeup!   Grin

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« Reply #25 on: December 22, 2002, 04:43:45 AM »

Lord Bless!

Actually, the hijab, the headcovering of Muslim women, was borrowed from Christian Byzantium;  It was originally worn by all Orthodox women in ancient Byzantium - the Muslims borrowed it and made it their own.  Compare an Orthodox nun with a devout Muslim woman; you will be amazed at the comparison.  The tradition of women wearing the scarf is Orthodox and it is still our tradition.  For Orthodox women the scarf is a sign of dignity and a symbol of one who is Orthodox.  What one wears has a great deal to how one feels spiritually.  Clothing since the beginning of Mankind has had powerful meaning and significance.  Orthodox men as well as women should always be modest, clean and noble in appearance.  The casual attitude in attire is never appropriate for Orthodox Christians; Orthodox Christians should always dress in conservative attire and be aware that how they look is a way to evangelize.

Those who desire to wear loose styled clothes which reveal rather than conceal must seek the laver of Repentance in Confession.  

Theosis - Theosis -Theosis!

We must always remind ourselves of our mortality and that our purpose as Orthodox Christians it to put to death the flesh and glorify God in our bodies.

In the Theotokos,


Alexis


Lord Bless!
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« Reply #26 on: December 22, 2002, 06:14:44 AM »

AlaskanOrthodox,

Bravo!  You have wonderfully summarized the truth.  Don't people observe the icons?  Why do people think we have icons?  Don't people connect the modest dress of the saints with the way in which we all are to dress?  Is something missing in our catechesis and praxis?   Huh

Dan Lauffer
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« Reply #27 on: December 22, 2002, 07:31:27 AM »

Lord Bless!

Actually, the hijab, the headcovering of Muslim women, was borrowed from Christian Byzantium;  It was originally worn by all Orthodox women in ancient Byzantium - the Muslims borrowed it and made it their own.

You may be interested to know that the Muslim practice of removing shoes before entering the temple is another tradition they borrowed from the church. It's something I would love to have renewed in the church, during Summer. In Winter though I think my toes would drop off  Grin
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« Reply #28 on: December 22, 2002, 10:52:20 AM »

Bravo indeed Alaskan Orthodox!

Before my first visit to the Church here I contacted the priest to ask about the etiquette and was told that women should wear skirts/dresses and a scarf or hat. Coming from the Tridentine Mass this did not seem at all strange to me, although I have exchanged my mantilla for a scarf. I would not feel comfortable in the church without mine.As others have said, however, I don't consider it my place to reprove any visitors to the church for not wearing a scarf.

Covering the head has gone out of fashion generally, I notice that the female President of Ireland rarely seems to wear a hat for formal occasions (including religious ones). It's interesting to see footage of the British Queen back in the 1950s flying back to Britain after the death of her father. At the airport both she and her mother and sister are wearing hats with full face black veils attached. Jacqueline Kennedy also wore a large mantilla at the funeral of her husband. You wouldn't see this type of thing today.

I'm intrigued though by the idea that Muslims borrowed the veil from Christians. Can anyone supply further references for me to follow up?

Brigid
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« Reply #29 on: December 22, 2002, 02:41:30 PM »

Here is a quote from the quranic text that established the precedent for modesty in dress among Muslim women:

"Prophet! Tell your wives, your daughters and women of the believers that they should draw lower upon themselves the portions of their outer coverings from over their heads unto their bosoms so as to veil their arms, neck, the hair, and ornaments worn over them. This practice is more likely to help them to be distinguished ( from non-Muslim women) and saves them from trouble... ."-Surah 33:59.

As Islam spread into the Roman (Byzantine) lands, and Roman women became Muslims, they retained their cultural traditions, including modest dress. So the Roman and Islamic styles reinforced each other.

Btw: The burkha is Zorastrian in origin and pre-dates Christianity and Islam.

Jude
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« Reply #30 on: December 22, 2002, 04:30:57 PM »

In Albania, Catholic and muslim women, are veiled, while the orthodox are not veiled, that is curious. Catholics there seem to have received more turklish influence than the muslims themselves (and the orthodox of course)
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