Malankara World

What Shall I Do To Be Saved?

By Rev. Dr. Curian Kaniyamparambil

Question 102. Priests in the Orthodox Church wear a cap or a veil. Isn't this against what St. Paul has said? (i.e. when praying, do not cover your head)

The priests and bishops wear a head-dress. The head-dress only covers the hair. The term head means everything above the neck, which includes the eyes, ears, nose, and jaws. So covering the head is not the same as covering just the hair, which is on top of the head. The Jews had a practice of covering the whole head. ('Meanwhile the king covered his face and cried out.' (2 Samuel 19:5). This is what St. Paul has banned.

Ex. 29:9 - "A belt on the waist and a cap on the head are the signs of priesthood."

The head-dress of the bishop and priest also show their authority. In the Old Testament, we find High-priests and priests wearing the head-dress to show the glory of God.

Monks wear their special head-dress as a sign of their submission to the discipline of their community.

When St. Paul speaks about the helmet of salvation, and the crown of righteousness, the usage of different head-dresses for the purposes other than submission is not ruled out.

TOC Section 1 (Q 1-26) | Section 2 (Q 27-56) | Section 3 (Q 57-81) | Section 4 (Q 82-115) | Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

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