Friday, 7 May 2010

The Veil for Christian Women

Many Christian blogs are posting that a woman must cover her hair, and some women are now covering their hair with veils, snoods, etc. I'm not sure what to think about this. Doesn't it say in the Bible (I believe Corinthians 11) that a woman should cover? What is your opinion? Thank you very much for your time. Melissa.

"You yourselves judge: doth it become a woman, to pray unto God uncovered?"

(1 Corinthians 11: 13)

Women who enter a church to pray should cover their head, but not their face, with a veil. That is my view.

"But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. Any man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonours his head, but any woman who prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonours her head — it is the same as if her head were shaven. For if a woman will not veil herself, then she should cut off her hair; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her wear a veil.

"For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. (For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.) That is why a woman ought to have a veil on her head, because of the angels. ... If any one is disposed to be contentious, we recognise no other practice, nor do the churches of God."

(1 Corinthians 11: 3-10,16)

In obedience to sacred scripture, many Catholic women wear some kind of veil or head-covering. Some wear a head-covering only at Mass. Others feel called to wear a head-covering at other times during the day, as well as at Mass. Many non-Catholic Christian women also wear a head-covering.

These women are following the call of the Holy Spirit. Society discourages women from wearing a head-covering and from doing anything else which shows submissiveness and obedience. Yet these women have found the light of truth in the midst of dark times.

The moral law requires all women to wear the veil on their hearts. A woman should not wear the veil on her head, until she is wearing it first on her heart. A woman who wears the veil on her heart accepts the place that God gives to women in the Church, the family, and society.

Women who wear the veil on their hearts are imitating the Virgin Mary in her humility, submissiveness, and obedience to Christ. The veil should cover her head, but not her face. It is first and foremost symbolic of humility, submissiveness and obedience.

When St Veronica saw Jesus carrying His cross, she took off her veil and gave it to Him to wipe His face. He handed the veil back to her, and it had an image of His face on it. In this way, Christ gave a special blessing to the practice of wearing a veil. Even Veronica's name comes from this event. She is called vera icon because she had a true icon of Christ, her veil with His face on it. Nearly every Catholic Church has the stations of the Cross with this event at one of the stations.
The Virgin Mary wore a veil or head-covering because she understood this symbol of the different roles given to men and women. Those women who wear the veil are imitating the Virgin Mary in her humility and submissiveness. Nearly every Catholic Church has a statue or image of Mary wearing a veil.


  1. Thank you for your very helpful answer!

  2. Amen lovely. I am one of those women who have chosen to cover. I feel called to do so.