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Sunday, May 3, 2009

How come the Church doesn't honor male saints as Virgins?

To look at the Mass ordos and liturgies I guess it must just be a woman thang. [Now, I know, that in theory, single men are supposed to remain virgins as are single women. But it's a little telling isn't it, that in TWO THOUSAND YEARS OF CHURCH HISTORY, there are no guy virgins honored as such.] There is no guy, for instance honored as "virgin and martyr" etc.

Whassupwiddat? Been wondering about that one for years.

9 comments:

Tara said...

Yeah! What's up with that!? It would almost seem that virginity is harder for women than men--the fact that it's mentioned with women and not men???

gemoftheocean said...

Well, I think it's almost saying the opposite. It comes off as "Well, we know you women can be pure as the driven snow, but so far it's proven impossible for us."

madame evangelista said...

Yep, it's an interesting one. Maybe it's because so many of those female saints were martyred because they were trying to maintain their virginity rather than get married. I haven't come across a single story where a man was martyred for wanting to be a priest instead of getting married off against his will.

I suppose it was also difficult to tell if a man was a virgin or not. Whereas it's hard to not notice a pregancy...

Mark said...

I imagine that most men saints come under other headings - Martyrs, Pastors, Doctors, etc.

Then there's the "catch-all" category of "Men Saints", which includes sub-categories of Religious, Saints Noted for Works of Mercy, Abbots, and Educators.

Maybe the men saints who don't fit into one or other of those sub-categories tend to be the notorious sinners who have undergone dramatic conversions - and hence not eligible for the Virgin category.

gemoftheocean said...

Good point, Madame E. - guys all seem to laugh when female teachers get nailed for seducing a young male student. Many of them think "Geez, in my wildest dreams as a kid...."

And Mark..un-huh...face it the "confessor priests" all know how "evil" they [men!] are...they hear their confessions! Perhaps some poor monk said "Hey, let's make Sixto of late an happy memory a saint. Let's propose him as confessor and virgin" and then some other monk, who'd heard Sixto's confession, simply laughed out loud [involuntarily] and monk number one said "okay, then, CONFESSOR." St. Augustine, wouldn't have made the cut, for sure.

Somewhat irritatingly, since elevation of a few female saints to the "Doctor" status, the Latin common of doctors still refers to "he" and gives no option for "she" though I'd be surprised if some priest who "got it" didn't change that "he" to "she."

Somewhere else I found a loophole for the ladies. "Z" and like minded always are insistent that "vir" only and always refers to men only rather than the generic "homines" which is more akin to "mankind."

During lent whilst attending the Latin Mass - I remember seeing a latin phrase which said that God wouldn't bend to the will of [a] man. "Vir" was used here. So I guess that must mean that God will on occasion bend to the will of a woman? That or it was inconcievable to the author that it would even be thought that God would be jousting with a woman. Either way, it left us an "out."

:-D [for those who need a smile.] Well, perhaps that Cana business....

Okay, so "vir" means "man [only" when people like Z need it to mean men only! [Actually, another friend of mine (male as it happens) did say although "vir" almost always does mean "man" [in the sense of male only] there were a few places in classical latin he'd come across where it didn't - but he [frustratingly] couldn't pinpoint one for me.

Angela M. said...

I'll pay you a million dollars to go pose this question on the "Catholic Cavemen" blog.

paramedicgirl said...

I never thought of that! It`s one of those things that probably don`t cross people`s minds. But yeah,now that you menyioned it - what`s up with that?

Paul, just this guy, you know? said...

So I guess that must mean that God will on occasion bend to the will of a woman?

Of course, it's in the Bible. Why do you think we pray the "Hail, Mary"?

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Good question, hmmmm, i'll have to think about it.

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