Women's ordination??

I understand that the Coptic Orthodox Church is opposed to the ordination of women to ecclesiastical ranks. I was just curious as to what the reasoning is that the Coptic Church has??


  • The modern Coptic Church has adopted so much from Islam that it is virtually Muslim. The ordination of women did occur in the early church, however it was only to the rank of Deaconess - not the modern sense of 'deaconess', who is just a women who is like a nun serving in the world - but an actual deaconess ordained through laying of the hands and has the capacity to administer communion to the women, as well as assist the priest in the Chrismation of women (for purposes of decency). I think this is all in the Didascalia Apostolorum. I also remember reading that women deaconesses could also serve alongside deacons, behind the Iconostasis, in the Sanctuary.

    Even without ordination, why doesn't the church accept women chanters? It is ridiculous how stupidly misogynist we have become. The stupid part isn't the misogyny, it is the fact that it is completely unwarranted. The Syrian Church (our sister church) has relegated the chanting almost exclusively to women. This dates back to St. Ephraim the Syrian who would write hymns and immediately teach them to the women, thus establishing chant as the job for women. Perhaps if women had been allowed to chant we wouldn't have lost so many hymns to the shadows of history.

    I understand that it may have been difficult at some points in history to accomplish all this under the scourge of Islam, but why can't we do it now? We are so afraid of change (or more correctly, reversion) that I'm starting to think that we, as an ethnic group, have some serious psychological abandonment issues.

    O how low we have fallen...
  • women can certainly chant.

    we stand in the congregation and chant happily


  • What I meant by chant is to be as equally responsible for chant as men. Or at least be allowed to be able to take full responsibility for chant (depending on the circumstances in the parish). We have marginalised them too much.

  • @Khepra, no one said women are not responsible to chant as men. Hymns and chants are the people's job, but psaltoses became the head of that the process through the years, and it's only the lowest of the deaconship ranks. Chanters/Psaltos and Arch-Psaltoses were always there in church (even before the 15th) but not dedicated to be of the ranks of deaconship till recently. And because women can't become deacons, they cannot be leading the people in chanting, atleast with this recent structure. I haven't heard of women being dedicated to chant anything in the coptic/alexandrian church before, atleast not in the same manner as chanters. With all due respect to other sister churches, I don't really care if they have some kind of rank for this. They have their rites, we have ours. I don't see any problems with that. 

    Since you brought up this matter, let me post Anba Serapion response to something that he did in his grace diocese that is now being refereed to as women deaconesses: 

    NOW, I would rather not argue about this further because it is very trivial compared to what Girgisantony question, Ordination of Women in the Church. So let's get back on topic. @Khepra, if you would like to talk further specifically about this women not becoming Psaltoses, let's open a new discussion but just be specific in its title.
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