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Author Topic: Headscarves - Revisiting an Old Topic  (Read 13672 times) Average Rating: 0
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Jennifer
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« on: March 08, 2005, 09:13:34 PM »

I've been thinking a lot recently about headcoverings and modest dress in church and I'm curious if other women have 'wrestled' with this issue.  (forgive me, I know it's been discussed before)  I've come to believe that women should cover their heads in church.  It's from Scripture and it's a good, pious tradition.  BUT, I feel very self-conscious doing it because no one does it at my parish except for the priest's wife.  I feel like if I show up for liturgy with a headscarf I'll look like a show-off.  I've worn hats a few times but that's much less conspicuous than a scarf. 

I picked up a simple scarf today at a department store and messed with it a bit tonight and it looks so darn pious that I'm embarrassed.  I don't think of myself as 'pious.' 

On a similar note, I've also been a long quest for appropriate church attire.  I always wear a skirt to the Divine Liturgy but most of my skirts hit right below the knee or if they're a little longer they have a slit.  I feel like ideally I should have a skirt that hits at about my calf but iIt's near impossible to find long skirts.  I'm short and any long skirt is like Laura Ingalls Wilder on me.  I tried a few on today that were actually longer than my legs.  There's a few websites with modest clothing that have wrap skirts that might be a good option although I'd have to get it hemmed.  Any ladies had similar issues?  What's brought this to a head is that there is no way I can do prostrations in any of my skirts.  I usually wear jeans for vespers (the horrors!) but I feel like I should dress it up a bit for the presanctified liturgy at least I can do prostrations in my jeans without being a near occassion of sin (I'm such a Roman Catholic Grin ) for anyone. 

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« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2005, 09:41:30 PM »

Heya Jennifer Smiley

I, too, have "wrestled" with these things. After many many months of thinking (too) hard about head coverings, I came to the conclusion that they are a good thing, mostly because they are a physical practice in humility, which is something I struggle with. I understand the flip side perspective, though, where the head covering instead could become a source of pride. But for me, the head covering issue became a thorn in my side simply because I found I was more concerned w/ what people thought than, well, what God thought (haha it's true tho). So that's when I decided to get over my self-consciousness and just "try" it, to see what the spiritual benefits might be. Now, for me, there was actually a very practical benefit that I feel is tied to their original use, which is that I have long, thick hair that goes all over the place, and even in a pony-tail, when I do a bow the pony-tail would flop over my shoulder and into my face. Not to mention my silly habit of swishing my bangs to the side - I have some fidgeting problems, which manifest into me playing w/ my hair a lot. By covering my head and using the covering to get the hair outta my way, I can participate in all the physical aspects of our worship (sign of cross, bows, etc) without distraction. Beyond this, another reason I have stuck with it is because my patron is the Theotokos, and as my avatar suggests, I want nothing more than to emulate her (even though I do a bad job at it most of the time), and as everyone always says, her head is always covered in icons. Anyway, these are a few of the reasons why I continue to cover my head.

An important thing to remember is, everyone is at the divine services to pay attention to their relationship with God, not the people around them. The fact that we all face forward, including the clergy, is a testament to this, IMO.

As for modest dress, I personally usually go for ankle-length skirts or dresses (which I usually then wear a shirt over the top to make it more like a "skirt" since many of my dresses are spaghetti strap), precisely for the reason you said: bows and prostrations, etc. This hasn't been a huge problem for me, since my personal every-day style in spring and summer consists of broom-skirts ("peasant skirts" as some call 'em), so I have many. On top, I have cultivated a daunting collection of solid color cotton t-shirts, in many many colors Smiley The only advice I can give for finding skirts that fit you and are the length you want is to try thrift stores, since those are the only places the broom-skirt style is found these days (unless you count Urban Outfitters, but I can't afford that lol). Good luck on your search for clothes! Smiley

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« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2005, 09:56:17 PM »

Also - a friend has told me that long skirts without slits are also to be found in Talbots, in case the broom-skirt thing isn't really your style Wink
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« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2005, 12:53:59 AM »

I'm on the (very) short side myself.  I have a long black skirt that I bought many years ago that I depend on frequently.  It's got a slit to ensure that you can walk without falling over, but it's not too high.  Since "knee-length" skirts tend to go well below my knees due to my being vertically challenged, they usually do pretty well for me, and I haven't found them to be much of a problem during prostrations because the skirts tend to fall right around me and cover me quite well.
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« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2005, 01:41:44 AM »

Never really been a issue, frankly. Grin

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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2005, 01:59:44 AM »

I always cover my hair in church. In addition to trying to be obedient to scripture (at least in this one thing), it just feels right. It somehow focuses me and reminds me that I am in a special place.

Since there are plenty of immigrants in my church, covering my hair doesn't really make me stand out, as many other women cover as well. I understand the issue of not wanting to stand out. I have been to a few churches where no one covered their hair and I felt like a fish out of water, so to speak. If your priest's wife wears a scarf, try one similar to what she wears and, who knows, you may start a trend! Does your church have a bookstore/giftshop? If so, perhaps you can suggest that they carry a few scarves or lace mantillas. Although there have always been women at my church who have covered their hair, more cover now than five years ago. I think that may have to do with the fact that our church's bookstore now carries scarves and lace mantillas. I think a lot of women don't cover because they don't know where to look for something appropriate for that purpose. If it is made available, more women will try it. 

I feel most comfortalble with a long rectangle. The most comfortable material is Indian cotton, since it doesn't slip off too easily. Lace mantillas are nice and if you are looking for one, the best source over the internet is http://www.headcoverings.com/index.html. Right now it is kind of trendy to wear little scarves tied behind the neck. I and some other women at my parish sometimes tie our lace mantillas behind our necks, as it can be more comfortable that way.

As for long skirts and dresses, try Eddie Bauer online.
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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2005, 02:04:21 AM »

Oops! I'm always doing this--posting a reply and then thinking of something else to add.  Sorry.  Here is the site for the Eddie Bauer outlet.  It's cheaper and has some good things: http://www.eddiebaueroutlet.com/default.asp?lp=c0
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« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2005, 02:05:54 AM »

I have a few mantillas from back when I used to attend the traditional Mass but I never worn them to the Divine Liturgy because no one here ever wears mantillas. 

I think I might try a headcovering soon.  It'll be a little embarrasing at first but it's probably a good, pious practice.  I just hope I don't offend anyone.  I know that it's a controversial issue and some women think that it's sexist and get angry when they see a woman in a veil. 

In case anyone is interested, I found this website: modestclothing.com which looks like it has some inexpensive long skirts.  I especially like the wrap skirts.  However, they are 40 inches long which means they are longer than my legs! 
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« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2005, 10:18:38 AM »

Yes, I have wrestled with this topic myself. I still have a problem with the "pious costume"  the one that screams "look at me I'm so ORTHODOX!"  Dressing like a 19th century Russian peasant or copping the "penacostal style" in a long denim or calico print skirt with a frumpy blouse IMHO is not necessary.  Especially if it is not the way you dressed before.  I think that we need to set a good example of modest dress to the rest of the world without making ourselves stick out like sore thumbs.   I have been able to find perfectly modern, comfortable and modest clothing for liturgy as well as come nice scarves at TJ Maxx and Marshalls.

Personally, I tend to go with the climate of the parish.  If most of the women cover, I will too. If most of the women don't cover thier heads, I won't. I don't like to be a spectacle.    Regardless of what parish I find myself in, I'm always dressed modestly for church. I favor knee length to ankle length (when I can find them as I am 5'9 1/2) skirts and well fit shirts and blouses.

That's my personal opinion.



As for www.modestapparrel.com, I have ordered from them before. The quality is outstanding for the price!
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« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2005, 11:17:47 AM »

I wear headcoverings only when I go to Communion & during the first & last week of lent.  When we were young in Jordanville, our parents never made us wear scarves, it was only when converts (both American & ex-Soviet) started moving close by that you began seeing 2 month old babies in scarves.  I have nothing against scarves at all, but when some pilgram tried to give us scarves to put on when we came for vigil one weekend saying "I know you girls are new here, but really, if you knew anything about Orthodoxy you wouldn't be tempting the monks," I couldn't help turning around saying "Most of these monks gave us candy and bounced us on their knees, if their tempted by us, they've got more problems than just uncovered female hair."  The old Jordanville tradition (dicated by Archimandrite Kyprian (may he rest in peace) who was the spiritual father to many people including Met. Lavr), was that married women wear headcoverings, unmarried can go without.

On the flip side I have a billion and 5 scarves, shawls, and mantillas which I could in theory wear, but use as draperies, throws, wall hangings and tablecloths (yeah, my apartment's a little weird.  :-) ) 

So that's my babble about scarves.

As far as skirts, Old Navy has (or had, being poor I haven't been there in a while) some pretty decent full length elastic skirts that are perfect for prostrations during lent.  Also, I just know when I'm specifically looking for something I almost never find it.  However if I go to buy shoes and randomly check out the sales rack for tops & skirts/pants, I tend to find great stuff. 

As for the short people, my full sympanthies coming from a short family, but really, LEARN TO HEM!!! A whole new world of possibilities will open up to you in both pants and skirts. 
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« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2005, 11:50:48 AM »

Maybe it's my Protestant background showing a bit, but I could never bring myself to "go without" when it's in Scripture.  I don't think it's very conspicuous if the rest of your outfit is fairly "normal".
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« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2005, 11:51:19 AM »

Never occurred to me to wear anything of the type! Nobody in out parish wears scarves except the very oldest of the Yaya's, and there arent even many of them. Some wear hats (I've seen some fabulous hats). Most ladies wear skirts, in general, but i havent noticed it as a topic at all here. Someone explain prostrations to me...I've a billion and one questions to ask people at church. (first lent/Pascha season for me).
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« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2005, 01:07:11 PM »


As for the short people, my full sympanthies coming from a short family, but really, LEARN TO HEM!!! A whole new world of possibilities will open up to you in both pants and skirts.

I naturally 'recoil' when I think about hemming my skirts and slacks.  My mom and grandmother used to hem my clothes when I was growing up and the never looked right.  The hems never looked the same as 'store-bought.'  I've had a few things altered at the tailor and I should do that more.  I know the tailor can make them look the same as 'store-bought' but I can't get past those childhood memories of the weird looking hems my mother/grandmother did for me. 
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« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2005, 01:16:05 PM »

Never occurred to me to wear anything of the type! Nobody in out parish wears scarves except the very oldest of the Yaya's, and there arent even many of them.  Some wear hats (I've seen some fabulous hats). Most ladies wear skirts, in general, but i havent noticed it as a topic at all here.  Someone explain prostrations to me...I've a billion and one questions to ask people at church. (first lent/Pascha season for me).
Aurelia

I'll try to explain it.  During the Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian which is recited at all of the liturgy of the Presanctified, you do prostrations after every line.  Also it's traditional to include St. Ephraim's prayer in your daily prayers during lent with the prostrations.  You go down on your knees then touch your forehead on the floor then stand back up.  BTW, if your parish has pews, I'm not sure how you do the prostrations.  I've only seen it done in non-parish pews. 

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« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2005, 02:51:51 PM »



I'll try to explain it. During the Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian which is recited at all of the liturgy of the Presanctified, you do prostrations after every line. Also it's traditional to include St. Ephraim's prayer in your daily prayers during lent with the prostrations. You go down on your knees then touch your forehead on the floor then stand back up. BTW, if your parish has pews, I'm not sure how you do the prostrations. I've only seen it done in non-parish pews.



Good explaination! I attended a "pew havin' church last year and everyone sort of moved to the center of the aisle or stood in the back and did prostrations that way. The other way to do prostrations in a church with pews is to go down on your knees and touch your forehead to your hands or the pew in front of you. or simply go down on your knees in sort of a crouching position.
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« Reply #15 on: March 09, 2005, 03:47:05 PM »

Jennifer,

You should have moved to Texas!  The ladies down here, including a matushka I know, wear lovely Southern hats.  My wife has now started in on it.  Not only do they cover your head, but they shield you from the sun when you go outside.  But I guess that's not a real problem where you are.
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« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2005, 05:17:01 PM »

i generally wear jeans and sneakers to church, not out of disrespect but for comfort as long as they're clean i dont see a problem. in fact ive seen people wear tshirts and what not on occasion.  i dont see what the big deal is about dress as long as you don't look sloppy or hooker-like.

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« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2005, 05:48:23 PM »

I attended a "pew havin' church last year and everyone sort of moved to the center of the aisle or stood in the back and did prostrations that way. The other way to do prostrations in a church with pews is to go down on your knees and touch your forehead to your hands or the pew in front of you. or simply go down on your knees in sort of a crouching position.

It was always hard on me during Lent at the Antiochian church I used to attend in Tulsa...the floor was sloped slightly forward and there were pews, so not only did I have to basically fold myself down under the pew into a little ball (which, when you have a lit candle during Holy Week, can get pretty interesting--you always smell someone's burning hair at least once during the service), but when you stayed down there for a few seconds, all the blood would just start to creeeeeep up into your head. It was special. Wink

You should have moved to Texas!

Woah! Do you live in TX, cizinec? If there's a Serbian parish around here, it's news to me!

i generally wear jeans and sneakers to church, not out of disrespect but for comfort as long as they're clean i dont see a problem. in fact ive seen people wear tshirts and what not on occasion. i dont see what the big deal is about dress as long as you don't look sloppy or hooker-like.

Well, yeah, and no one should really look or care about other folks' manner of dress, but--to call you on your own reasoning which you used to tell me about how church buildings should be--we'd dress up to meet the President; shouldn't we do so at least to a degree to meet the King?

That having been said, I usually dress according to the "importance" of the service--less formally for Vespers (slacks, a golf shirt), nicer for DL (button-down shirt, tie, slacks), even NICER for Holy Week/Pascha (suit/tie, though I may be wearing a reader's cassock come this Pascha, Lord and Archbishop willing).

A (my wife Audra) usually wears a scarf during Lent for presanctified and during Holy Week, but not many other times...a symbol of repentance and all that.
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« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2005, 06:54:47 PM »

If one wears a headcovering, should all of the hair be covered? 

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« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2005, 10:13:43 AM »

If one wears a headcovering, should all of the hair be covered?



That depends. I know some monastaries require this, in my experience at parishes where most of the women do cover I have seen everything from bandanas, hats, turbans, tams and big dramatic scarves.
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« Reply #20 on: March 10, 2005, 11:56:42 AM »

Since everyone seems to agree, I think I'll provide an opposite view point for the sake of being a dissenter. From a purely historical standpoint, what Paul was referring to in Verses 11 and 12 is not the same as what is today. To clarify. Back in the day that the Letter was written, The headscarf meant a very different thing than it means today. In Paul's time, A prostitute was recognized by how she dressed. To leave the hair uncovered and lose, flowing down and untamed meant that a woman was independent and could do whatever she wanted. To counter this in Christian society, the women would wear headscarfs to distinguish themselves from common harlots. Now in todays day and age, there is no distinction. A woman not wearing a headscarf doesn't mean that she's a prostitute, it just means that she feels more comfortable with her head uncovered. Further, Paul goes on in verses 13 and 14 to day that each person should judge for themselves about whether it is right or not to wear a headscarf. He continues in 16 that if it will be an issue for a woman then there should be no covering of the head and they may go with their head uncovered. So from history, we see that Paul was merely addressing a cultural issue at the time, and not a spiritual issue. Therefore, the use of headcoverings by women is in my opinion optional.

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« Reply #21 on: March 10, 2005, 12:47:13 PM »

Nicholas, no he does not make it an option and in telling people to judge he is explaining it as something they know is right.
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« Reply #22 on: March 10, 2005, 01:46:31 PM »

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So from history, we see that Paul was merely addressing a cultural issue at the time, and not a spiritual issue. Therefore, the use of headcoverings by women is in my opinion optional.

I think we have only been discussing our own personal practice regarding head scarves - i.e. I don't think any woman who has posted yet has stated that it is not optional, and so required. As a newcomer to Orthodoxy, I seek only to conform my own behavior to my ever-growing understanding of Orthodoxy, and on this issue I have no place or right to project my understanding onto others who have been doing this far longer than I have.
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« Reply #23 on: March 10, 2005, 02:11:50 PM »

Pedro,

St. Sava SOC is in Cypress, a suburb of Houston. I think it's been around for fifteen to twenty years.

Sts. Constantine & Helen is in Galveston (I think this is the oldest Orthodox parish in Texas and one of the oldest in North America). Its current builing was built in 1915 and received most of its icons from Czar Nicholas II. I believe it was Russian when it was built and I believe their first church was built in 1890.

Three Holy Hierarchs is in Dallas. This is a new parish. I think it's only a few years old.

There are also communities in Austin and San Antonio. I know they want to get their own priest, etc.

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« Reply #24 on: March 10, 2005, 02:30:32 PM »

There are also communities in Austin and San Antonio.  I know they want to get their own priest, etc.

There's a Serbian community here in SA?  I had no idea...
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« Reply #25 on: March 10, 2005, 05:11:38 PM »



I think we have only been discussing our own personal practice regarding head scarves - i.e. I don't think any woman who has posted yet has stated that it is not optional, and so required. As a newcomer to Orthodoxy, I seek only to conform my own behavior to my ever-growing understanding of Orthodoxy, and on this issue I have no place or right to project my understanding onto others who have been doing this far longer than I have.


I wasn't trying to disagree, I was merely trying to state an opposite view point as I see things. If we didn't let history interfere with religion, we would all be wearing sandals and robes like Christ and the Apostles, but no one is doing that anymore. I was trying to relate the headscarfs to a change in dress and attitude nothing more, i apologize if I have offended anyone, it was not my intent.

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« Reply #26 on: March 10, 2005, 05:28:55 PM »

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I was trying to relate the headscarfs to a change in dress and attitude nothing more, i apologize if I have offended anyone, it was not my intent.

As far as I'm concerned, no apology necessary Smiley I follow what you are saying re: change in attitudes towards dress and what it signifies, but I still submit that head scarves have a very practical use for women w/ long hair so they can participate fully in the faith through bows and prostrations w/o hair getting in the way... the fact that it is a pious tradition happens to reinforce their use, in my thinking.
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« Reply #27 on: March 10, 2005, 07:38:50 PM »

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I believe it was Russian when it was built and I believe their first church was built in 1890.

Not only that, but it had a Greek priest as well! (Who, I am told, is responsible for certain Greekifications in the design of the church, such as having the bishop's throne outside the altar, rather than at the high place.)

[And totally off-topic, but I witnessed with my own two eyes my priest serving at liturgy there under Metr. Christopher, so nyah to anyone who says that ROCOR and Serbia aren't in communion.]
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« Reply #28 on: March 31, 2005, 11:02:20 PM »

Update on the scarf issue....

I've been covering my head at church for the past month or so.  At first it felt strange but I'm pretty much used to it now.  Thank goodness no one has said anything.  And this wednesday at Presanctified another catechumen showed up wearing a scarf. 

The problem is that I don't have that many headcoverings.  I have a little black hat and a white scarf.  The scarf isn't one of those big triangle things though so it doesn't cover all of my hair.  I look around for other head coverings but they seem to be hard to find.  After experimenting I found a way to wear my mantillas.  I can tie it behind the head and then wrap it around a bun.  It's okay.  Not totally Orthodox but it's a start. 

I think I'll have to ease into the babushka scarf look.  I've got to confess though I really don't like wearing scarfs tied under my chin. 

Maybe I'll check out some stores in the Orthodox Jewish part of town since they cover their heads.  Obviously if I'm going to be doing this for the rest of my life I need to build up a headcovering 'wardrobe.' 

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« Reply #29 on: April 01, 2005, 12:23:13 AM »

I wouldn't worry if some of your hair sticks out from the scarf or not having it under the chin and more just tied around the hair/head instead.  I think it's more the gesture that counts.

Disclaimer:  I'm a male, so what do I know.
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« Reply #30 on: April 01, 2005, 01:57:17 AM »

I can't say that I know of any women who cover their hair who do the babushka thing.  Not even the babushkas.  Don't fret too much about it, if you can help it. Most of the women that I know who choose to wear one wear the same one or two every week. It becomes part of their experience of church like a priest's vestments in a way. It's not about fashion, matching, or having a great variety.
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« Reply #31 on: April 05, 2005, 03:08:07 PM »

Hello, I have been a catachumen for 8 months. I see a lot of headscarves in my (mostly convert) congregation. I am very bothered by them. I am especially bothered by women who put them on their little daughters, some as young as 3 or 4! I cannot understand the point of a headscarf. It was part of customary dress in biblical times, as were long robes and sandals for both men and women. Why don't the men show up in First Century attire too, if it is so important to dress like the early church? Probably the headscarf was essential for the biblical woman because she did not have the opportunity to wash and style her hair like we have today. (By the way, I have short "mousy" hair, nothing attractive about it!) My question is WHY this arcane practice??
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« Reply #32 on: April 05, 2005, 03:50:44 PM »

Read this thread and do a search for lots of other threads. It's discussed all over the place. If it were only a historical clothing issue, it wouldn't be addressed. For many people, it's more than that. And that's fine. Talk to your priest about it. And try not to judge or get angry at the people who do wear them. Most parishes have both kinds of people. It's just not an issue.
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« Reply #33 on: April 05, 2005, 03:53:40 PM »

Hello, I have been a catachumen for 8 months. I see a lot of headscarves in my (mostly convert) congregation. I am very bothered by them. I am especially bothered by women who put them on their little daughters, some as young as 3 or 4! I cannot understand the point of a headscarf. It was part of customary dress in biblical times, as were long robes and sandals for both men and women. Why don't the men show up in First Century attire too, if it is so important to dress like the early church? Probably the headscarf was essential for the biblical woman because she did not have the opportunity to wash and style her hair like we have today. (By the way, I have short "mousy" hair, nothing attractive about it!) My question is WHY this arcane practice??

I may be oversimplyfing but... The scarf creates "ambience" and makes one feel good about being Orthodox. Donning a headcovering is more a matter of climate of an individual parish than an official rule of the whole Orthodox  church. Yes, they are more common amongst the converts and much less common in an ethnic parish.

Forgive these people, don't let them get to you. They are only trying to do what's right. I felt  and sometimes still feel the same type of annoyance as you feel.
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« Reply #34 on: April 05, 2005, 04:07:51 PM »

I remember on my visit to the local Malankara church that the women with maybe one except had headcoverings. BUT they used a sort of shawl-- very long and a bit narrow-- and the result was every bit as fetching as the triangle-tied-under-the-chin is dowdy.
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« Reply #35 on: April 05, 2005, 04:22:41 PM »

 Beware, this is probably a liberal, ignorant-sounding, WestCoast thing to say! From a recent catachumen, SoCal, West Coast,mostly convert OO church point of view, I can understand the use of the word "arcane"
in reference to headscarves. Your comments about hair and hygeine are true but secondary in my mind. Let's talk cultural context here.  I have read that the custom in the Holy Land during New Testament times was that the only women who had uncovered heads were the prostitutes and that is the reason for  St. Paul's encouragement to  Christian women to cover their heads in church, it was a sign of respect. That makes perfect sense to me in the cultural context of 1st century Palestine. In my cultural context this is not a problem. There are no elder cradle orthodox women in my parish, so we "young" (relative term) have to go to places like this forum to discuss such things. I don't know what your parish's ethnic background is, our parish is Syrian/Indian. The photos and videos I've seen of Orthodox women in our tradition include Indian women with headcoverings and Syrian women with/without depending on the country. All that to say this. In my part of the US women don't usually do headcoverings /hats etc. for church (like it sounds like they do in the southern US). I go with that norm  and do not wear headcoverings to my parish. BUT, if I were visiting or attending a parish where headcoverings are the practice and there were strong feelings about the wearing of them, I hope that I would choose the charitable/respectful thing and wear them. It could be a way of showing honor to your fellow parishoners. When I was a guest in Russia  at an Orthodox church I wore a scarf out of respect. I know that you know that your spirituality is in no way affected by what is or isn't on your head. Don't you think that the most important thing is to have a humble heart?  How is that for speaking out of both sides of my mouth? Bottom line, I do not believe that that particular Biblical mandate needs to be practiced today, but where it is I choose respect for the cultural heritage of others
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« Reply #36 on: April 05, 2005, 04:41:00 PM »

A couple of points (how unelegantly I may attempt to make):

1) First of all, putting scarves on young girls (like anyone pre-teen), while may be good in a sense of getting them accustomed to wearing it or maybe wanting to "be like mommy" may be ok, but in a praxis/patristic sense would be utterly ridiculous and besides the point.

2) Now to the meaning.  I've read that the meaning of wearing a scarf has to do with woman being considered the "fountainhead" of man regarding beauty - with references made to the Theotokos being "More honourable than the Cherubim and beyond compare, more glorious than the Seraphim..."  With that in mind, it makes sense for St. Paul to say that women should cover their hair.  Of course, the point is for everyone to dress modestly so one can focus on God.
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« Reply #37 on: April 05, 2005, 05:53:39 PM »

Quote
Yes, they are more common amongst the converts and much less common in an ethnic parish.

Depends on the parish. The main ROCOR church here in Houston is very close to 100% ethnic Russians and Ukrainians, to the point that the sermon is given in Russian, and I'd estimate at least half of those women wear a head covering of some sort.
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« Reply #38 on: April 05, 2005, 06:07:44 PM »

It's a matter of respect and the demonstration thereof. In past Western (and Eastern, to an extent) history, men donned hats for most of the time. Removing a hat when indoors, when acknowledging a lady, and especially when in church (excepting liturgical vestments that include headgear) was the respectful way of humbling one's self. For women, it is the taking on of a hat/headcovering when in a church that is the respectful way of humbling one's self. Equal but opposite.

Men have fallen out of the habit of wearing hats when outdoors. Women have fallen out of the habit of wearing hats altogether. Some women continue the practice of donning headgear whenever they're in church as it is the tradition. Any man that wears a hat/headcovering to church had better remove it upon entering or it would be seen as disrespectful. The practices continue with some limited practice. If women wore headcoverings all the time as used to be common practice, wearing one in church would be a non-issue. If more men still wore hats a lot of the time, making sure the man did not wear it while in church would be more of an issue.

The end result of all that incoherent babble?
It's a non-issue.
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« Reply #39 on: April 05, 2005, 06:53:54 PM »

A Corinthians 11 / 4-17

4 Every man who has something on his head while praying or prophesying disgraces his head.
5 But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying disgraces her head, for she is one and the same as the woman whose head is shaved.
6 For if a woman does not cover her head, let her also have her hair cut off; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her cover her head.
7 For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man.
8 For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man;
9 for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake, but woman for the man's sake.
10 Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.
11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.
12 For as the woman originates from the man, so also the man has his birth through the woman; and all things originate from God.
13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered?
14 Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him,
15 but if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her? For her hair is given to her for a covering.
16 But if one is inclined to be contentious, we have no other practice, nor have the churches of God.
17 But in giving this instruction, I do not praise you, because you come together not for the better but for the worse.

Do you know that angels are present in the church ?

The covers over the heads are signs for the angels, because they are not able to distinguish the difference bettwen a man and a woman.

And the true meaning is not about the visual covers but the unseen ones.

Let every woman and man in the church be dressed with humility and have her head covered with humbleness. This is the message from S. Paul.

Also note that in the days of Apostle Paul women that participated in pagan ceremonies have had their heads shaved. So Paul was suggesting to women in his time period not to follow pagan customs.

Also note that S. Paul says "11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman." This is the point that S. Paul is actually trying to make: "preserve what is actually the true meaning for the creation of "man-sex" and "woman-sex" from God: Be different in nature but at the same time be united in Christ".
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« Reply #40 on: April 06, 2005, 03:28:22 AM »

It's weird, but I find that in the west it is mostly converts who cover their heads, but in the east (specifically Romania) the split is more of an age thing. Old women always wear headscarves, younger ones usually don't. The same is true for men wearing hats outside and doffing them in church. If you're ever in Romania be very wary of getting into a taxi if the driver wears a hat. At every single church or shrine they pass they'll take both hands off the wheel, doff their hat with one hand and cross themselves with the other - very scary if you're doing 40 down a country lane!

As for the 'dowdy' scarf knotted under the chin look, in Romania that really is the excusive preserve of old women. The young ones tend to knot them at the nape of the neck, which is much more fetching (or so my wife leads me to believe!). Personally, I'd agree with those here who suggest that women try to fit in with the common practice in their parish. I don't really think it's a big deal to go uncovered. Strangely, though, I think I'd probably critricise a man for entering a church with his head covered. Maybe it's because of my upbringing (I was sent to military school and so constantly had to remove my military cap on entering the church after parade), but I think it's the height of disrespect. I'm troubled to find myself being so inconsistent. Never mind.

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« Reply #41 on: April 06, 2005, 11:29:11 AM »

As far as little girls having their heads covered...
Whatever people may think, it's not a Old Russia tradition, but a New Russia (post 1990) tradition. 
Back in the day, when a woman was married, the next Sunday there was actually a ceremony where a scarf was put on her, as a mark of her new position in the community as a married woman, giving her new status and respect. I've been meaning to locate the actually ceremony in old Russian service books, but whenever I think of it, I don't have time, and when I have time, I don't think about it.

Random Old Russia fact: Girls traditionally wore their hair in 2 braids, when they married, they would have 1 braid.

(BTW, seeing infants with their heads covered drives me bonkers).
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« Reply #42 on: April 06, 2005, 11:56:34 AM »

lpap,
Thanks for jogging my old memory. This headcovering issue surfaces in our home as well. I can understand my wife not wishing to wear the doilie-thingie the oldtimers wear in her ACROD parish and she says she'll cover her head "when Pani does"...no help there.
What your post did do was remind me of parts of a very good piece I found on the internet early last year, written by a convert who objected to the requirement.
I found the piece to be excellent, bookmarked it. then downloaded the page totally to my hard-drive,... then reformatted the dumb drive 6 months later without backup. Embarrassed
The gist of her article was her realizing that the headcovering was symbolic of the willful act of submission of the Theotokos before the Archangel at the Annunciation. That this symbol of submission did not entail oppression by her husband but her willful acceptance "before the angels' of her honored place in Creation and the role she had to fulfil as an Orthodox wife and mother.
It was beautiful.
Now to find the piece again...
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« Reply #43 on: April 06, 2005, 12:39:06 PM »

Interesting thread. I decided to join discussion.. I have been thinking this headcovering subject a lot. In my parish only few women wear scarves. I tried in the beginning but stopped at some point, sometimes I wear sometimes not. This angel part that they would be incapable to see men from women without a scarf as a mark part is totally new to me. What's its origin? Does anyone know? Huh
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« Reply #44 on: April 06, 2005, 01:05:23 PM »

As far as little girls having their heads covered...
Whatever people may think, it's not a Old Russia tradition, but a New Russia (post 1990) tradition.
Back in the day, when a woman was married, the next Sunday there was actually a ceremony where a scarf was put on her, as a mark of her new position in the community as a married woman, giving her new status and respect. I've been meaning to locate the actually ceremony in old Russian service books, but whenever I think of it, I don't have time, and when I have time, I don't think about it.

Random Old Russia fact: Girls traditionally wore their hair in 2 braids, when they married, they would have 1 braid.

(BTW, seeing infants with their heads covered drives me bonkers).

Interesting.  I read something on-line (I think from that Old Believer ROCOR parish in Erie, PA) that said that all girls should wear a scarf once they are not infants in their mother's arms.  I also saw a photo of a ROCA priest and his family.  All of the girls wore scarves. 
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« Reply #45 on: April 06, 2005, 03:19:51 PM »

The main ROCOR church here in Houston is very close to 100% ethnic Russians and Ukrainians, to the point that the sermon is given in Russian, and I'd estimate at least half of those women wear a head covering of some sort.

Same thing here. My ROCOR parish in S+úo Paulo is about 90% ethnic Russian, and about 70% of the female attendance wear headscarves.

I've saw recent photos of a service in Ishim, Siberia. As far as I can recall, all the women were covering their heads, including the infants.

And now for a completely useless and improper comment: besides all the traditional, patristical etc. grounds... I have noticed that girls and young women wearing headscarves often become very charming. Many of them get an irresistibly angelical look you almost cannot find in girls today (possibly this is the reason by which the angels themselves like them with head coverings, according to a previous post).  Cheesy I can even recall a few cases in which a nice headscarf has proved to be a much better option than the supposedly stylish hair it covered.  Afro Yes, almost all women in the world would vehemently disagree; but it is also true that a large part of the male public would agree with me, even if they prefer not to overtly acknowledge it out of understandable security reasons.

EDIT AFTER RE-READING THE POST: On a second thought, I need to admit that the described effects may depend much on the headscarf choosen. The user herself also plays a major role. Grin
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« Reply #46 on: April 06, 2005, 04:20:04 PM »

There are (still) some people that must have a code! A guide to perform their lives.

The coming of Christ has changed this attitude (unfortunately not for all of us).

In Orthodox Church there are NO fashion guides. The teaching of S. Paul is not about a presentation formula.

We (men and women) stand before God as free beings with the freedom to present our REAL selves and to LOOK upon the face of our God.

Why the original question was asked anyway? Was the person who started this topic searching for a proper way to perform salvation for herself?

Whatever the motivation was, the real question is about the necessity for the description of a form that will mould the "unsaved SELF" to a "saved person". Such a pattern does not exist.

S. Paul talks about behavior and hair style in the same context as someone would have described the hair style and the clothes and the behavior of a bride. What is important to analyze and search for in this case is the internal "dimension" of the bride. If a lady wants to be a bride she must find her bridegroom. Bridegroom is Christ. This is the important issue that S. paul is talking about. He is always talking about persons and relations, not about their appearance.

Matthew 25/10"And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; And the door was shut.

Church is not an army in uniform.
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« Reply #47 on: April 06, 2005, 04:28:30 PM »



Interesting. I read something on-line (I think from that Old Believer ROCOR parish in Erie, PA) that said that all girls should wear a scarf once they are not infants in their mother's arms. I also saw a photo of a ROCA priest and his family. All of the girls wore scarves.


Old Believers have traditions that weren't carried on by the regular Russian church after they split.

As far as the ROCA priest and his family... Being the daughter (ROCOR), granddaughter (ROCOR), and great-granddaughter (Russian Church, pre-Revolution) of Russian priests, I can say that different ROCOR priests have different rules for their children.  My father and grandfather never told us to wear scarves, hats or any kind of headcovering, though I have heard them mention that it bothers them when they see scarves on infants and young girls. 
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« Reply #48 on: April 06, 2005, 05:45:29 PM »

Old Believers have traditions that weren't carried on by the regular Russian church after they split.

As far as the ROCA priest and his family... Being the daughter (ROCOR), granddaughter (ROCOR), and great-granddaughter (Russian Church, pre-Revolution) of Russian priests, I can say that different ROCOR priests have different rules for their children. My father and grandfather never told us to wear scarves, hats or any kind of headcovering, though I have heard them mention that it bothers them when they see scarves on infants and young girls.


Whoops, jurisidictional confusion again!  I meant ROAC not ROCA. 

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« Reply #49 on: April 06, 2005, 05:58:21 PM »

I was wondering if it was the ROAC picture that you had seen, Jennifer.  The one of the McGowan family out in Colorado? 

I've been following the ROAC ummm doings on line for over a year.  I, sorry, but I would not take the ROAC for any sort of authority on EO living. Ania has been ROCOR all her life and I think she is a much better authority.

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« Reply #50 on: April 07, 2005, 03:13:53 AM »

Ania,

I found it interesting that you said that in old Russian tradition the wife is scarved on the following Sunday to show her new status as a wife. I guess this is at the time of the churching (if that's the correct word in English)?

Romanians have a similar tradition, though it's not done at the same time. The following Sunday we merely kneel before the priest, get blessed with holy water and are accepted into the church for the first time as a married couple - there's no headscarf involved. However, there is a ceremony during the wedding night (I don't know about other traditions, but Romanian wedding receptions tend to go from dusk till dawn - literally) called the 'undressing of the bride'. In this ceremony, which takes place in the early hours of the morning, the bride's veil and train are removed and the veil is replaced with a headscarf. This has precisely the symbolism you mention with regards to the Russian tradition. It also provided me with one of my favourite photos from our wedding.

James
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« Reply #51 on: April 07, 2005, 09:18:31 AM »

From an earlier post:

"Do you know that angels are present in the church ?

The covers over the heads are signs for the angels, because they are not able to distinguish the difference bettwen a man and a woman.

And the true meaning is not about the visual covers but the unseen ones. "

Two questions: (1) If the angels cannot tell the difference between a man and a woman, why does this difference matter? (2) What do you mean by "unseen ones?" Unseen covers? I am baffled.
Thanks

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« Reply #52 on: April 07, 2005, 11:19:24 AM »


Two questions: (1) If the angels cannot tell the difference between a man and a woman, why does this difference matter? (2) What do you mean by "unseen ones?" Unseen covers? I am baffled.
Thanks


Yes I'm interested in this one too! Can anyone explain, please?
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« Reply #53 on: April 07, 2005, 04:47:12 PM »

I read or heard somewhere that the "because of the angels" line in 1 Corinthians 11, had to do with the Book of Enoch.  The Book of Enoch was popular reading during the first century and  St. Paul, being an educated man, probably read it.  It was quoted in Jude and copies of it were found among the dead sea scrolls.  Also, it is my understanding that it is still a part of the Ethiopian canon of scripture.

Anyway, the Book of Enoch tells of some angels who came to earth and did things they shouldn't have with mortal woman.  According to what I read or heard, St. Paul was making reference to that. In other words, women should cover their heads so that they are not a temptation to the angels.

That interpretation seems a little weird to me, especially since the angels are everywhere (or so I thought) and not just in church when we are praying. 

I have never heard the theory that St. Paul was saying that headcoverings are needed to help the angels distinguish between male and female.  It would be interesting to hear an explaination of this interpretation.
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« Reply #54 on: April 09, 2005, 11:39:43 PM »

Hi Carol,

Let me answer your questions.

> If the angels cannot tell the difference between a man and a woman, why does this difference matter?
There is biological difference in the body. Of course angels can tell the difference between a man and a woman regarding their bodies! So what is this difference that they cannot understand and for that reason they need help from women?

The passage from S. Paul is: I Corinthians 11:10 "Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels". The original text in Greek is: "+¦+¦ß+¦ -ä++ß+ª-ä++ ß+Ç-å+¦ß+++++¦+¦ ß+í +¦-à ++ß+¦ ß+É++++-à -âß+++¦++ ß+ö-ç+¦+¦++ ß+É-Çß+¦ -äß+å-é +¦+¦-å+¦++ß+å-é +¦+¦ß+¦ -ä++ß+¦-é ß+Ç+¦+¦ß+¦++++-à -é" in which the word "+¦+¦+¼ - because" has the meaning "for the benefit".

So the actual translation of the passage is the following: I Corinthians 11:10 "Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, for the benefit of the angels". In this frame seems that the whole issue is a misunderstanding regarding that the angels are those who benefit by the symbol of authority on the heads of women not the women themselves.
I repeat: the angels benefit by the symbol of authority on the heads of women.

The angels comprehend that a woman being, that she was created after the creation of man and she has for this reason a symbol of authority on her head to manifest that she is humble in her own nature compared to a man that can boast about his time-lead in creation, she is in the eyes of God equal with man and she is accepted in the Church just the same as man is. You must have in mind that the angels were present during the creation of man. They know all about man and woman creation.

There is a danger that a woman will enter the church with no sign/symbol of the acceptance that “I am a nature created after man". In this case the second (in time) woman nature will challenge the first (in time) man nature for an equality that is not true. So angels learn that women in the Church are not challenging man for this reason, and they accept to remain in this place by wearing a symbol of authority on their heads. This manifestation from women benefits the angels in helping them to realize that the natural order is not important in front of the face of God.

It’s like arriving at a restaurant after someone else has arrived before you. So you take and hold a symbol to show that you accept this second -in time-place. Nevertheless the restaurant manager is serving both you and the time leading customer in the same way without making any exception regarding the time difference of your arrival. Now if someone else was seeing this incident he would understand that since you accepted to hold the symbol of your lateness it is the generosity of the restaurant manager that equate you with this time-leading customer.

In the same way the angels are seeing that in Church women are accepting to hold the symbol of their natural lateness (inasmuch man was created before them) and they are actually submit themselves to man priority in salvation but the Grace and Love of Lord equates man and woman. So angels benefit from this behavior because - with the help of women - they are learning that Lord abolishes the time-first privilege of man for the favor of women.

If women were not holding this symbol of authority on their heads then this lesson would have not be given to angels. The angels would have not be able to realize the difference between man and woman before salvation and after salvation. Before salvation there is a difference that has to be lifted by making man and woman same in everything by earthly efforts. After salvation the difference is lifted by God Himself without any human effort or use of earthly means. After salvation the under authority woman is free by the Grace of Lord.

(2) What do you mean by "unseen ones?"
I mean that S. Paul is not talking about fashion. His concern is to teach us that humbleness is the dressing to wear in front of God. This is the unseen cover.
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« Reply #55 on: April 11, 2005, 12:33:48 PM »

Interesting! I wonder why is it that so few women use it (at least here in Finland) when it is considered to be so important.
Even my priest whom I appreciate very higly doesn't see scarves necessary. Is there any theological reason not wearing a scarf, has someone decided at some point that it isn't important anymore, or is it a question of not caring? Huh
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« Reply #56 on: April 11, 2005, 01:00:02 PM »

Sister Verushka,

Orthodoxy has never tried to teach how to stand, or what to wear, or how to look like.
I believe this is the power of Truth in Orthodoxy. Not to transform people into an army of clone Christian believers but to unite the variety of each person into one Body .

Regarding your question no one has decided contrary the teaching of S. Paul.

If you go to a monastery you will find that in a men’s' monastery monks do not cover their heads inside the church and in a women’s' monastery nuns are always have their heads covered inside the church.

A general rule is that you can find Orthodoxy in real practice only inside monasteries.

The Church shows tolerance for people out of monastic life.

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« Reply #57 on: April 12, 2005, 02:06:54 PM »

Thank you Ipap for reminding me... I should have known myself   Smiley
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« Reply #58 on: April 24, 2005, 12:11:53 PM »

While below is not the article I referred to above, it is close and from an obvious heterodox source. I still find it interesting. Comments?

http://www.godswordtowomen.org/clements_submission.htm
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« Reply #59 on: April 24, 2005, 02:06:07 PM »

While below is not the article I referred to above, it is close and from an obvious heterodox source. I still find it interesting. Comments?
http://www.godswordtowomen.org/clements_submission.htm

They translate the 1 Corinthians 11:10 as "A woman should have power over her head (physical head) because of the angels."

Then they explain it as "Therefore, the verse says that a woman should have the freedom of choice to cover or uncover her head, and she should not be judged or categorized because of her choice. Additional scriptures using the same language, "power over," include: Luke 9:1 "Power and authority over demons"; Luke 10: 19 "Authority over all the power of the enemy"; Revelation 2:26 "Power over the nations"; Revelation 6:8 "Power over the fourth part of the earth?"; Revelation 14:18 "Power over fire"; and Revelation 16:9 "Power over these plagues."

As you see there is a misunderstanding because if we use this context then in the cases of Luke 9:1 "Power and authority over demons"; Luke 10: 19 "Authority over all the power of the enemy"; Revelation 2:26 "Power over the nations"; Revelation 6:8 "Power over the fourth part of the earth?"; Revelation 14:18 "Power over fire"; and Revelation 16:9 "Power over these plagues", the "power over" means having freedom of choice, having the authority to act regarding the subject which the power is over.

This explanation does not stand in these passages, because we then accept that in Luke 9:11 "And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases." means that "And He called the twelve together, and gave them the freedom of choice to act upon the demons and to heal diseases." Such a translation has many problems. The same stands for the other references too. In all these references, the meaning of "power over" and "authority over" means "to have the power to defeat an enemy" which of course can not be applied to 1 Corinthians 11:10 in case of woman's head.

I think that the right translation is "Therefore the woman ought to have (a symbol of) authority on her head, for the benefit of the angels. To "have authority" should taken not as "having the power", but as "having (a symbol of) power".

It's like telling to a policeman "Show me your authority over me, in order to arrest me" and by that I mean show me the symbol of your authority, show me the arrest warrant.

It’s like saying " a Policeman ought to have authority on his head" and by that we mean that he has to were a hat that is the symbol of a higher authority under which he stands and for that reason we cannot challenge his policeman status.  
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« Reply #60 on: April 24, 2005, 11:57:39 PM »

Thanks. lpap, for your usual painstakingly detailed analysis.
I do not disagree with you; but I did find the points on 'messenger' and 'submission' interesting. My lost article was more specific as to why this submission was not so much an obedience thing, but more of a respect thing.


{Yes, I just moved this from where I posted it earlier today - don't know how I had it in wrong thread to start with... Embarrassed }
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« Reply #61 on: April 25, 2005, 08:38:13 AM »

Out of curiosity . . .

Is there anything wrong with women covering their heads with hats?Huh

Down here it's about 80% to 20%.  Most of the women wear hats, although the women who wear hats will occassionally wear scarves.  Of course the hats do double duty and protect women's faces from the sun.  I know it's not for fashion, but I don't show up wearing grubby jeans and a torn up t-shirt and shout that church isn't a place for fashion or uniforms.  The hats look very nice and formal and appropriate for church, especially down here. 

At any rate, as untraditional as they may seem, I throw in my hat for, ummmm, hats.
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« Reply #62 on: April 25, 2005, 08:43:43 AM »

<grin>
I've never heard of hats being a no-no.
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« Reply #63 on: April 28, 2005, 10:55:02 AM »

Hats actually were worn much more up until about 15-20 years ago.  The whole scarf thing I think came in when people stopped dressing up for church.  If you look at old photos of parishes, you would see most of the women in hats, and not just normal hats, but really fancy-shmancy numbers.  These hats would match their outfits, which were usually nice modern (for them) suits or dresses, well cut and not at all floor length (mid-calf or right below the knee was quite normal).
To this day, my mother and both grandmothers wear hats to church, and only throw on a scarf if they are in a great hurry and don't have time to make themselves up. 
To them and other women who wear those hats, going to church is an event, and they must prepare phsyically as well as spirtually.  They are going to meet and stand before God.  To them going in drab clothing and a scarf would be insulting.  They are going to meet the most important Person in their lives, more improtant than their husbands, bosses, etc, and therefore their clothing must reflect it.  Dressing so is a sign of respect, and to them not a fashion show.
Sometimes I wish I had a little more respect for God to make a real effort in my appearance when going to church than just on Christmas, Petacost and Pascha.

Speaking of, I just realized, Holy Thursday, leaving for home tomorrow AM and I REALLY need to go shopping for an outfit, I have nothing in my closet good enough for Pascha...  There goes my lunch hour.
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« Reply #64 on: May 09, 2005, 01:49:11 AM »

The girls at church look so cute in those headscarves. Smiley
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« Reply #65 on: July 04, 2005, 12:01:30 PM »

I realise this a really old topic, but just one comment: since I started attending Orthodox services nearly three years ago, scarves have never been the slightest problem for me, I don't even *think* about it when I'm wearing one.  I like covering my head in church.  For me, it just feels pious...hard to explain.  BUT, as far as the long skirts go, I'm fighting them tooth and nail.  They're fine during Lent or if you're visiting a monastery, but oh, how I hate them as "standard church attire."   I'm really short(5'0) which may have something to do with it.  I always wear a skirt that covers my knees, but ankle length, it's a battle for me.  Just to be clear, everyone who wears long skirts at my church look very nice.  They are just something I can't stand on me.  When I was working, I ALWAYS wore a skirt to work.  Never even thought about it.  Always to church, always to a nice restaurant, but weekends I wear jeans, or long shorts.  It makes me sad to think that this is somehow "wrong."   It's true, everyday I see women dressed like, well, hookers.  And it's a sad statement.  But I'm never going to be able to do the "home church Fundamentalist " Orthodox look.  If it helps one's spiritual development, great, but I just don't feel the need to wear an "Orthodox uniform."  Now this is not a criticism of anyone else, just how it is for me.
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« Reply #66 on: July 04, 2005, 05:55:31 PM »

Don't worry about it.  If your skirt covers your knees, you're doing fine.  The really long skirts can be useful, however, if you are into doing the full prostrations.  It can be a bit tricky in a shorter skirt.  ÃƒÆ’‚ Smiley
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« Reply #67 on: July 04, 2005, 07:17:45 PM »

For me, it just feels pious...hard to explain.

And hence why I made a point out of somethign seemingly so irrelevant in the first place (and why I made the statement that those who insist on it would be better off in islam), when a young lady (or worse yet an infant, but let's not go there) wears a headscarf it too often seems to be false piety to me, not necessicarily the young lady's false piety (and certainly not the aforementioned infant's) but the false piety of perhaps the priest or perhaps influential members of the congregation..my first suspicion would be the priest (or parents in the infant's case); maybe I'm wrong, and I genuinely hope I am...now if you just think it's something really cool to wear, or, better yet, are wearing headscarves because it is scandalous to certain segments of society (ecclesiastical and secular)...then great, go for it, I'd be indifferent in the first instance and supportive in the second Wink

Quote
BUT, as far as the long skirts go, I'm fighting them tooth and nail.  They're fine during Lent or if you're visiting a monastery, but oh, how I hate them as "standard church attire."  ÃƒÆ’‚ I'm really short(5'0) which may have something to do with it.  I always wear a skirt that covers my knees, but ankle length, it's a battle for me.  Just to be clear, everyone who wears long skirts at my church look very nice.  They are just something I can't stand on me.  When I was working, I ALWAYS wore a skirt to work.  Never even thought about it.  Always to church, always to a nice restaurant, but weekends I wear jeans, or long shorts.  It makes me sad to think that this is somehow "wrong."  ÃƒÆ’‚ It's true, everyday I see women dressed like, well, hookers.  And it's a sad statement.  But I'm never going to be able to do the "home church Fundamentalist " Orthodox look.  If it helps one's spiritual development, great, but I just don't feel the need to wear an "Orthodox uniform."  Now this is not a criticism of anyone else, just how it is for me.

Try pants, female members of the United States Senate and ladies in the House of Lords have been wearing them for years...even Her Majesty the Queen wears them in public...or better yet, you could be perfectly scandalous and go to church in an anderi...lol.

Ah, that reminds me, as this is the 4th of July, I thought these few words would be appropriate:

GOD SAVE THE QUEEN!!!
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« Reply #68 on: July 04, 2005, 07:23:37 PM »

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GOD SAVE THE QUEEN!!!

Ο Θεός ευλογίσον την Αμερικην, τη γη οτί αγαπώ...
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« Reply #69 on: July 04, 2005, 07:26:15 PM »

And hence why I made a point out of somethign seemingly so irrelevant in the first place (and why I made the statement that those who insist on it would be better off in islam), when a young lady (or worse yet an infant, but let's not go there) wears a headscarf it too often seems to be false piety to me

And this is your problem by making this judgement on them just because they want to follow the traditions of the Church and not embrace modernism as the Protestants have. Just because you do not respect Church Tradition gives you no right to make such a negative judgement on someone who does.

On one side you argue for the Church to get with the times and modernize and not stay the same as it has always been, but on the other side you fight those who show you modern bishops that now speak against slavery. You cannot have it both way. Either embrace the Orthodox Tradition and not secularism and modernism or if you want to embrace the secular modern world as an example for Orthodox Christians, then do not use the traditions of the Church (since you do not believe in them) to defend yourself in supporting slavery and other things!
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« Reply #70 on: July 04, 2005, 07:30:21 PM »

...those who insist on it [headscarves] would be better off in islam)

I’d like to see you say that to my mamma’s face, she’d slap you silly boy!

Peace.
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« Reply #71 on: July 04, 2005, 07:34:36 PM »

The bizarre part of your argument, GreekisPagan, is the inconsistancy of them.  We all know that you are opposed to the use of all English in American (and I assume all native English speaking lands) because that would be a break from Tradition.  Langauge is solely external - yet it is a custom you insist upon... yet any custom tied to Orthopraxis you are opposed to.  Alas this seems to be the mentality of many of those coming from Holy Cross - worship of Greek ethnicity and lukewarmness towards Orthodoxy.  Without her Orthodoxy Greek is nothing more than homosexual pagans.... it is Orthodoxy that is exalted, not Greece.  And I am willing to bet that I have spent a great deal more time actually in Greece than you and if your Greek is anything like the rest of those coming out of Holy Cross, mine is considerably better than yours. ÂÂ
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« Reply #72 on: July 04, 2005, 07:58:18 PM »

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Without her Orthodoxy Greek is nothing more than homosexual pagans....

LOL I'd like to give you more opportunity to make calls like that.

What is Egyptian without Orthodoxy? Come on, you got much to play with...sand, camels, sand...

Entertain me,

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« Reply #73 on: July 04, 2005, 09:47:12 PM »

The Queen wears pants?!   Shocked

I have problems with two of the arguments presented against headscarves in this thread and the other headscarf thread:

1.  The argument that wearing a headcovering in St. Paul's day was in accordance with the culture and that since we have a different culture, women should no longer wear them.

     This is pretty much the argument of those who think the Church should now support sex outside of marriage, gay marriage and other things that are explicitly forbidden by the scriptures.  In other words, the argument can be used to invalidate lots of biblical teachings, since the culture in which the Bible was written was so different from ours.

2.  The argument that headcoverings result in, or are the result of, false piety.

     In my church there is no pressure either way with regard to headcoverings.  I would say about forty percent of the women cover and the rest don't.  I have never detected any feelings of false piety coming from anyone, especially not our priest (whose wife does not cover.)  I have never felt any attitude from any of the women who cover, and I would hope no one is detecting that from me.

     I wear a scarf to the liturgy and it is purely because it makes me feel closer to God.  It helps me focus on the liturgy and reminds me that I am in a special place.  It doesn't make me feel pious, but that is probably because I'm really not very pious.  Really.  You should see me during Lent, desperately pigging out on beef ribs.  Actually it's good no one sees me, it's not a very attractive picture.  Maybe during Lent we could start a thread on where we go and what we pig out on when we cheat on the fast.  Unless, of course, I'm the only one who has ever done it.

     Sorry about the tangent. Where was I?  Oh yes.  Headscarves.  While I have a problem with people judging women who don't wear them, I have as much of a problem with those who judge women (and their priests) who do.  Just because someone wants to follow the biblical injunction from 1 Corinthians 11, doesn't mean they or their priest are locked in a frivolous ethnic tradition.  It also doesn't mean they are pretentiously pious.
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« Reply #74 on: July 04, 2005, 10:17:18 PM »

I tried to reply to this yesterday but my browser crashed and I am not sure if this is the correct thead since there are two headscarf threads.  Anyway, GisC said that freezing a culture in time is an Islamic thing.  I would ask GisC if he has ever been in a majority Muslim region of the world as I have and if he is aware of the fact that Islam grows and develops just like any other religion and culture, and that the fundamentalist Islamic movement known as Wahabbism is only a modern phenomenon really.  By the 19th century, most educated Muslims seem to have become quite "liberal" and it is only now that there is a "reevangelization" of these Muslims by the Wahabbists with their luddite and anti-cultural positions.  My point in all of this is that we shouldn't label headscarves an Islamic thing as many if not all Muslim women don't even wear headscarves now!

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« Reply #75 on: July 04, 2005, 10:58:01 PM »

[quote author=Νικολάος Διάκονος link=topic=5594.msg85858#msg85858 date=1120519575]
And this is your problem by making this judgement on them just because they want to follow the traditions of the Church and not embrace modernism as the Protestants have. Just because you do not respect Church Tradition gives you no right to make such a negative judgement on someone who does.
[/quote]

I have a profound respect for the Traditions of the Church, and I even respect the cultural customs of the Church, though I dont necessarily believe they should all be propagated into the next generation. For their time and in their social context they were important and at times even vital to the well being of the Church.

Quote
On one side you argue for the Church to get with the times and modernize and not stay the same as it has always been, but on the other side you fight those who show you modern bishops that now speak against slavery. You cannot have it both way. Either embrace the Orthodox Tradition and not secularism and modernism or if you want to embrace the secular modern world as an example for Orthodox Christians, then do not use the traditions of the Church (since you do not believe in them) to defend yourself in supporting slavery and other things!

I am distinguishing here between social customs and teachings of Morality and Dogma...my statement about Headscarfs is a social custom, my statement about Slavery is one of Morality. Local customs change, not morality.

The bizarre part of your argument, GreekisPagan, is the inconsistancy of them.  We all know that you are opposed to the use of all English in American (and I assume all native English speaking lands) because that would be a break from Tradition. Langauge is solely external - yet it is a custom you insist upon... yet any custom tied to Orthopraxis you are opposed to.

In part it's a break from tradition, but the break is accented by the fact that the Liturgy was originally written in Greek, better the Original than some translator's interpretation of it. But also, and perhaps more importantly, is the fact that Greek is the language our Mother Church uses; furthermore, the Holy and Oecumenical Throne of Constantinople is actually opposed to our use of English, making the use thereof an active rebellion against His All-Holiness in light of the direct and forthcoming statements he has made on the issue. Finally, the Greek community in the United States, in general, wants to maintain Greek, understanding the language to be central to who they are...My arguing against English in the liturgy is not merely an insistance on the perpetual propagation of every minor Custom, the importance of Greek in the Liturgy is far more significant than any importance headscarves ever have or will play.

Quote
Alas this seems to be the mentality of many of those coming from Holy Cross - worship of Greek ethnicity and lukewarmness towards Orthodoxy.  Without her Orthodoxy Greek is nothing more than homosexual pagans.... it is Orthodoxy that is exalted, not Greece.  And I am willing to bet that I have spent a great deal more time actually in Greece than you and if your Greek is anything like the rest of those coming out of Holy Cross, mine is considerably better than yours. 

And all this is relevant how?
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« Reply #76 on: July 04, 2005, 11:12:52 PM »

The Queen wears pants?!  ÃƒÆ’‚ Shocked

Yes, it was quite a shock to me when I first noticed it about 10 years ago, but as I've payed more attention to that over the years I've noticed that she quite often does when she's not involved Formal State affairs, times are certainly changing.

Quote
I have problems with two of the arguments presented against headscarves in this thread and the other headscarf thread:

1.ÂÂ  The argument that wearing a headcovering in St. Paul's day was in accordance with the culture and that since we have a different culture, women should no longer wear them.

  ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚ This is pretty much the argument of those who think the Church should now support sex outside of marriage, gay marriage and other things that are explicitly forbidden by the scriptures.  In other words, the argument can be used to invalidate lots of biblical teachings, since the culture in which the Bible was written was so different from ours.

As I've made no pretense about believing in the Infallibility of Scripture I don't find this passage to be problematic; but as I said in my previous post, and as I've said before, there is a difference between social customs and teachings of Dogma or Morality. We have no problem recognizing this in the Old Testament (e.g. laws about cleanness and uncleanness), what's so difficult about recognizing it in the New Testament?

Quote
2.ÂÂ  The argument that headcoverings result in, or are the result of, false piety.

  ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚ In my church there is no pressure either way with regard to headcoverings.  I would say about forty percent of the women cover and the rest don't.  I have never detected any feelings of false piety coming from anyone, especially not our priest (whose wife does not cover.)  I have never felt any attitude from any of the women who cover, and I would hope no one is detecting that from me.

  ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚ I wear a scarf to the liturgy and it is purely because it makes me feel closer to God.  It helps me focus on the liturgy and reminds me that I am in a special place.  It doesn't make me feel pious, but that is probably because I'm really not very pious.  Really.  You should see me during Lent, desperately pigging out on beef ribs.  Actually it's good no one sees me, it's not a very attractive picture.  Maybe during Lent we could start a thread on where we go and what we pig out on when we cheat on the fast.  Unless, of course, I'm the only one who has ever done it.

I hope it is not pietism for you or for anyone at your Church, and perhaps it's not; however, I say what I say from experience because when I have been in such places where all the Women Cover their Heads because it is required of them (NOTE: This is the Situation I've been talking about; thus, as only 40% of the women at your Church cover their heads, your Situation is not the one I have been refering to) there is very often a Cultic atmosphere where the false piety is quite obvious. (EkhristosAnesti, dont take too much offence here, having never attended a Coptic Service, I am unable to form an opinion one way or the other with regard to your parishes. Thus this is obviously not targeted at you.)
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« Reply #77 on: July 04, 2005, 11:14:38 PM »

the importance of Greek in the Liturgy is far more significant than any importance headscarves ever have or will play.


I can't see how you can write this with a straight face.  All women in all cultures have covered their heads in worship.  Scriptures say that women should cover their heads in church.  Where is Greek in the liturgy mentioned in Scripture?  Have all Christians used Greek in the liturgy?  No. 

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« Reply #78 on: July 04, 2005, 11:18:55 PM »


I hope it is not pietism for you or for anyone at your Church, and perhaps it's not; however, I say what I say from experience because when I have been in such places where all the Women Cover their Heads because it is required of them (NOTE: This is the Situation I've been talking about; thus, as only 40% of the women at your Church cover their heads, your Situation is not the one I have been refering to) there is very often a Cultic atmosphere where the false piety is quite obvious. (EkhristosAnesti, dont take too much offence here, having never attended a Coptic Service, I am unable to form an opinion one way or the other with regard to your parishes. Thus this is obviously not targeted at you.)

The thing that strikes me about almost all of greekchristian's posts is his negative opinions of Orthodox Christians who think differently than him.  According to greekchristian, Greek Orthodox who want english in the service hate their heritage.  Now he suspects that women who cover their heads in church have false piety. 

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« Reply #79 on: July 04, 2005, 11:19:26 PM »

I tried to reply to this yesterday but my browser crashed and I am not sure if this is the correct thead since there are two headscarf threads.ÂÂ  Anyway, GisC said that freezing a culture in time is an Islamic thing.ÂÂ  I would ask GisC if he has ever been in a majority Muslim region of the world as I have and if he is aware of the fact that Islam grows and develops just like any other religion and culture, and that the fundamentalist Islamic movement known as Wahabbism is only a modern phenomenon really.ÂÂ  By the 19th century, most educated Muslims seem to have become quite "liberal" and it is only now that there is a "reevangelization" of these Muslims by the Wahabbists with their luddite and anti-cultural positions.ÂÂ  My point in all of this is that we shouldn't label headscarves an Islamic thing as many if not all Muslim women don't even wear headscarves now!

Anastasios

Though I have not spent time in Islamic States, I do understand where you are comming from...Islam was a very progressive religion for many years, and in some places may even continue as such, though the fundamentalist elements that are coming and have come out of the poorer elements of society (fundamentalism almost always seems to rise from the lower classes, regardless of culture or religion) have overshadowed this element of Islamic religion, thus making my statement relevant to modern trends in Islam, if not with historical Islam. Thus, in the sense you have presented it, my attributing headscarves to being 'an Islamic thing' is, historically at least, unfair to Islam.
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« Reply #80 on: July 04, 2005, 11:22:58 PM »

The thing that strikes me about almost all of greekchristian's posts is his negative opinions of Orthodox Christians who think differently than him.ÂÂ  According to greekchristian, Greek Orthodox who want english in the service hate their heritage.ÂÂ  Now he suspects that women who cover their heads in church have false piety.ÂÂ  

That's not what I said, go back and read what you quoted from me carefully. (Hint, read the NOTE I put in the parentheses.)
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« Reply #81 on: July 04, 2005, 11:23:11 PM »

I would like to see english in Serbian Church in Australia. I am sick of sending all my anglican friends to Antiochian Church. Church is not a language museum. People should not expect the Church to teach their kids and grandkids Serbian. Same with customs. It is job of parents to educate kids.

Church is ONE HOLY CATHOLIC AND APOSTOLIC.


Sorry, that was my cry for today.

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« Reply #82 on: July 04, 2005, 11:25:45 PM »

Not to separate this into a male/female issue, but let the women do as they will as they are responsible to their priest and bishop, and let the men address this with their significant others/wives and not worry about other people, especially other people's female relatives.
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« Reply #83 on: July 04, 2005, 11:36:42 PM »

Not to separate this into a male/female issue, but let the women do as they will as they are responsible to their priest and bishop, and let the men address this with their significant others/wives and not worry about other people, especially other people's female relatives.

True.
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« Reply #84 on: July 05, 2005, 12:58:55 AM »

Not to separate this into a male/female issue, but let the women do as they will as they are responsible to their priest and bishop, and let the men address this with their significant others/wives and not worry about other people, especially other people's female relatives.

Headscarves are just a minor issue of a larger problem, fundamentalism in the Orthodox Church. From the nature of my posts it should be clear that I am concerned with these priests and bishops, who try an establish this custom as mandatory, more so than the women involved. This is the reason that I have said time and time again that the focus of my polemics has been parishes where headscarves are expected.
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« Reply #85 on: July 05, 2005, 02:03:53 AM »

What is the "fundamentalist Orthodox" position on pants suits?  What if a woman has their head covered but wears dress pants or some other pants?  One of the most pious members in my parish wears jeans, but has her head covered.  I think those of the (overly) "Traditionalist" variety need to realize that 18th century Russia dress <> the Orthodox standard of dress.  The point is modesty and piety.  No skirt (i.e. pants) <> impious.
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« Reply #86 on: July 05, 2005, 02:13:15 AM »

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Headscarves are just a minor issue of a larger problem, fundamentalism in the Orthodox Church.

Come one now, let's be honest.  I will openly admit and say that I am a "traditionalist."  But at the same time I mostly attend a more "modernist" parish.  No one has asked my opinion on headscares nor many other matters, so I never have offered it.  My attitude is that what other people do is between them and thier spiritual fathers (and ultimately God).  I just do my komposkini and say nothing.  Of course their are "traditionalists" who throw temper tantrums and such - but I don't see that as being in line with being a good Christian either (nor do most traditionalists either).  Most parishes where head scarves are seen as mandatory kindly ask visitors to wear out of respect of their custom... they don't go around to other places making sure everyone else comforms to them.  You on the other hand have appointed yourself to judge all those who think differently than you.  Quite frankly you are one of the most intolerant of people that I have come across, so which fundamentalism are you fighting?  Is it just traditionalism that you are fighting? ÂÂ

Quote
And all this is relevant how? [Pertaining to what I said about Holy Cross]

It is relevant because it reveals a mentality of emphasis on Greek ethnicism over practices related to the faith.  I wrote what I did write concerning my own knowledge of Greek life and culture as a point that I am not anti- Greek, nor do I think knowledge of Greek should be eradicated.  My point is that if tomorrow the GOA ruled that vespers never needed to be served, confession should never be more than once a year (and then that's not even needed) and that fasting shouldn't really be observed there wouldn't be much commotion.... but rule that no more than 25% of the liturgy be greek and you would have a riot.


Quote
the fact that the Liturgy was originally written in Greek, better the Original than some translator's interpretation of it.

Well here's the thing, I agree with that.  Thus I do almost all of my personal prayers at home in Greek.  Even when I went to a parish that was 90% English usage and 10% Slavonic I did my personal prayers in Greek... an English Liturgy didn't stop me.  But there are good English translations out there (St. Anthony's Monastery recently did a very nice project translating both the words and the byzantine music into western notation, I think it is something you would enjoy looking at - I'm being serious here too).  But the reality is that if people don't understand Greek than there is no point in using it.  And the people that actually understand it (even among Greek Americans) is not a very large group.  By the time you hit the second and third generations in America the vocaulary isn't much more than "Καλημέρα."

Quote
But also, and perhaps more importantly, is the fact that Greek is the language our Mother Church uses; furthermore, the Holy and Oecumenical Throne of Constantinople is actually opposed to our use of English, making the use thereof an active rebellion against His All-Holiness in light of the direct and forthcoming statements he has made on the issue.

Constantinople also has under its authority many non - Greeks (i.e the Ukrianians in America etc.).  Should they also use Greek, since the mother church uses it?  This is what I have been trying to say all along... this is a focus on the externals only not the Orthodoxy of the heart.  Should people in america flout the EP's authority? - of course not!  We should all pray that God opens our hearts to do his will and leave the issue at that. ÂÂ

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Finally, the Greek community in the United States, in general, wants to maintain Greek, understanding the language to be central to who they are

Outside of major Greek communities on the east coast, Chicago or Detroit most Greek Americans do not know Greek.  And if they want to mantain Greek there is nothing wrong with them singing the Akathist or Paraklisis as a family every night in Greek.

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« Reply #87 on: July 05, 2005, 08:00:47 AM »

Quick thing here --

Folks have been or will be PM'd individually concerning comments.  Let's all play nice, now.

Namecalling is for poopheads.  Grin
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« Reply #88 on: July 05, 2005, 08:10:55 AM »

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Namecalling is for poopheads. Grin

oh boy, it seems frequent conversing with little Hope Elizabeth is rubbing off on Pedro's posting style! Smiley
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« Reply #89 on: July 05, 2005, 09:21:22 AM »

What is the "fundamentalist Orthodox" position on pants suits?ÂÂ  What if a woman has their head covered but wears dress pants or some other pants?ÂÂ  One of the most pious members in my parish wears jeans, but has her head covered.ÂÂ  I think those of the (overly) "Traditionalist" variety need to realize that 18th century Russia dress <> the Orthodox standard of dress.ÂÂ  The point is modesty and piety.ÂÂ  No skirt (i.e. pants) <> impious.

At the GOC parish I attend sometimes, headscarves are encouraged but not required (except when going to communion) while pants are forbidden (there are wrapparound skirts for anyone showing up not in the know); the sign on the door says though that men are not allowed to dress immodestly either.

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« Reply #90 on: July 05, 2005, 11:09:00 AM »

Not to pick on Greeks in particular, but what I said of any Orthodox nation is true - without Orthodoxy they would be nothing special.  Since Greeks don't find their own history offensive, I don't see how showing their pre Orthodoxy days is offensive.  Ethnically I am a Slav and I am not afraid to admit that without Orthodoxy we would be pagans as well. 
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« Reply #91 on: July 05, 2005, 11:28:05 AM »

I don't know many things. One thing that I know is that as the prayer says O' Lord it is better to not to live than live without You.

Orthodox Nations without Orthodoxy aren't nations. Just look are what Serbs did. Suddenly we became "Yugoslav" and pissed up everthing that we as Serbs gained. I am disgusted by atheist Serbs, as much as I am disgusted by Muslim Serbs (Bosniaks) and sectarian Serbs (Baptists and other heretics in Serbia). Utterly disgusted. Without those three fingers on our head and our chest we have no head nor chest.

THESE THREE FINGERS!
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« Reply #92 on: July 05, 2005, 11:45:28 AM »

At the GOC parish I attend sometimes, headscarves are encouraged but not required (except when going to communion) while pants are forbidden (there are wrapparound skirts for anyone showing up not in the know); the sign on the door says though that men are not allowed to dress immodestly either.

Anastasios

But what's the fascination with skirts?  What's wrong with wearing a pants suit?  My mom (one of 3 - long story), hardly ever wears dresses, but wears dress pants all the time.  How is this "less conservative" than someone wearing a knee length skirt that may be long enough, but still shows a little leg?  It's like certain traditionalists refuse to accept ANY modern dress styles (clothing) at all! 
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« Reply #93 on: July 05, 2005, 01:21:01 PM »

[T]he sign on the door says though that men are not allowed to dress immodestly either.

The problem is that in practice men don't want to dress "immodestly"-- they want to dress like slobs. Or to approach it from another direction: there isn't any immodest formal wear for men, but for women it ranges all over the map.
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« Reply #94 on: July 05, 2005, 04:51:46 PM »

I have always understood that you dress not to be noticed in Church
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« Reply #95 on: July 05, 2005, 07:26:45 PM »

So if you cover, do you do so when you pray at home, as well?

Since 1 Corinthians 11:5 says, "But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying, disgraces her head..." (NASB); and since verse 10 (NASB) says "Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol fo authority on her head, because of the angels," is it the view of Orthodox women who do cover their heads that they should also do so when praying privately?
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« Reply #96 on: July 05, 2005, 07:41:59 PM »

I have always understood that you dress not to be noticed in Church

...which is a reason why I wonder about so many (especially older types) wearing these attention getting hats - they're much more distracting than a veil/scarf.
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« Reply #97 on: July 05, 2005, 08:36:58 PM »

So if you cover, do you do so when you pray at home, as well?

Since 1 Corinthians 11:5 says, "But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying, disgraces her head..." (NASB); and since verse 10 (NASB) says "Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol fo authority on her head, because of the angels," is it the view of Orthodox women who do cover their heads that they should also do so when praying privately?

Traditionally women wear a head covering whenever they pray, whether it be in church or at home.
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« Reply #98 on: July 06, 2005, 02:25:38 AM »

This discussion brings to mind the 12th Canon of the Synod of Gangra which, if not applicable to the letter, is certainly applicable in principle:

'If any one, under pretence of asceticism, should wear a periboloeum [a rugged overcoat work by ascetics] and, as if this gave him righteousness, shall despise those who with piety wear the berus [a robe which constituted the common dress of the day] and use other common and customary dress, let him be anathema.'
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« Reply #99 on: July 06, 2005, 10:08:02 AM »

[quote author=Νικολάος Διάκονος link=topic=5594.msg85991#msg85991 date=1120610218]
Traditionally women wear a head covering whenever they pray, whether it be in church or at home.
[/quote]

So then if a woman were to attempt to pray without ceasing (as instructed by St. Paul), she would basically have to keep her head covered at all times?
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« Reply #100 on: July 06, 2005, 10:21:18 AM »

I thought that women should cover their heads in church for modesty reasons...so as not to be noticed.  Therefore when the woman is at home praying behind closed doors she can have her head uncovered.
I could be wrong though.     Juliana
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« Reply #101 on: July 06, 2005, 10:59:07 AM »

So then if a woman were to attempt to pray without ceasing (as instructed by St. Paul), she would basically have to keep her head covered at all times?

Right. Many traditional babas and yayas do this since it has been a tradition for ages, and in traditional churches one may find many (but not all) younger women that do the same.
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« Reply #102 on: July 06, 2005, 11:14:12 AM »

So then if a woman were to attempt to pray without ceasing (as instructed by St. Paul), she would basically have to keep her head covered at all times?

Remember  also, that those (women in this case) that best live up to that high standard are usually, ahem, in a monastery (i.e. nuns).
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« Reply #103 on: July 06, 2005, 09:53:27 PM »

Oh, as to pants-not encouraged at my parish.  Which is fine with me.  What confuses me, are all the websites that say things like "my priest says no bright colors, no pants ever."  Or the stranger stuff, "Orthodox women should not cut their hair, no jewelry except a cross and a wedding ring, no Orthodox Christian should EVER be seen in shorts."  That sort of stuff.  It's not ROCOR, at least as I've experienced it.  Modesty seems to be "indefinable" these days.  I'd hate to think on a hot summer day at a picnic, I look evil in a loose t-shirt and knee-length shorts!
Now, on the ooooooother hand...Recently, sadly, a young man from my area was killed in Irag.  The local paper showed a photo of his flag-covered coffin.  Obviously, the photo should be respectful, both to the man who died as well as his family.  However, the coffin was not in focus, BUT a woman in a black, strapless dress was totally in focus.  I mean, this poor girl didn't know any better than to wear a strapless dress to a funeral!  I think it's this  the sort of thing that fuels all the Orthodoxy/modesty debates online. 
I certainly support modest dress in church, it's the idea that you can't be a "good" Orthodox Christian without wearing an ankle-length skirt 24/7/.  On the head cover question: when I was at our priest's house, we faced the icons to pray, but most of the women were not wearing hats/scarves.  Matushka took her's off after the prayer was over.
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