Women should be silent in the churches

[1 Corinthians]
{14:34} Women should be silent in the churches. For it is not permitted for them to speak; but instead, they should be subordinate, as the law also says.
{14:35} And if they want to learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in church.
{14:36} So now, did the Word of God proceed from you? Or was it sent to you alone?
{14:37} If anyone seems to be a prophet or a spiritual person, he should understand these things which I am writing to you, that these things are the commandments of the Lord.

This passage is the teaching of the Holy Spirit, not some error or bias by Paul. These things are the commandments of the Lord, found in both the Old and New Testaments.

However, Paul is not saying that women cannot speak at all in church. Earlier in this same Epistle (1 Cor 11:4-5) Paul considers that women and men might each pray or prophesy.

Instead, this silence is literal, to one extent, and figurative, to another extent. It is literal in the sense that certain roles in the Church involve one person speaking while the rest are silent. A priest at Mass often speaks alone, taking a certain role not given to women or to non-ordained men. This speaking versus silence indicates that the priest has a different role.

But this silence is also figurative, since women certainly can speak in prayer and in their participation in the Mass, when the faithful present take their proper role in the celebration. So the silence of women figuratively indicates that women are given different roles than men in the Church.

This passage also mentions the differences in roles for men and women intended by God for the family. The wife is subordinate to her husband in her role in the family, since he is the head of his wife. The roles of women in the Church are not unrelated to their roles in the family. We should be members of the Church not merely as individuals, but as whole families. The Church is a type of family, and so the difference in roles in the family also apply, to some extent to the Church.

Those persons who envision women having the same roles as men in the Church, the family, and society cannot explain why women cannot be priests. It is an anomaly to them. So even if they accept that women cannot be priests, it does not make sense to them. But those persons who understand that God gave different roles to men and women in His plan for humanity can more easily accept and understand why women cannot be priests.

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