The Church Fathers and Holy Orders and Women by Joe Gallegos
"Peace also they huddle up anyhow with all comers; for it matters not to them, however different be their treatment of subjects, provided only they can conspire together to storm the citadel of the one only Truth. All are puffed up, all offer you knowledge. Their catechumens are perfect before they are full-taught. The very women of these heretics, how wanton they are! For they are bold enough to teach, to dispute, to enact exorcisms, to undertake cures--it may be even to baptize. Their ordinations, are carelessly. administered, capricious, changeable. At one time they put novices in office; at another time, men who are bound to some secular employment; at another, persons who have apostatized from us, to bind them by vainglory, since they cannot by the truth. Nowhere is promotion easier than in the camp of rebels, where the mere fact of being there is a foremost service. And so it comes to pass that to-day one man is their bishop, to-morrow another; to-day he is a deacon who to-morrow is a reader; to-day he is a presbyter who tomorrow is a layman. For even on laymen do they impose the functions of priesthood."
Tertullian, On Prescription Against Heretics,41(A.D. 200),in ANF,III:263
"The consequence is, that a viper of the Cainite heresy, lately conversant in this quarter, has carried away a great number with her most venomous doctrine, making it her first aim to destroy baptism. Which is quite in accordance with nature; for vipers and asps and basilisks themselves generally do affect arid and waterless places. But we, little fishes, after the example of our IKHTHUS Jesus Christ, are born in water, nor have we safety in any other way than by permanently abiding in water; so that most monstrous creature, who had no right to teach even sound doctrine, knew full well how to kill the little fishes, by taking them away from the water!"
Tertullian, On Baptism,1(A.D. 200),in ANF,III:669
"It is not permitted to a woman to speak in the church; but neither (is it permitted her) to teach, nor to baptize, nor to offer, nor to claim to herself a lot in any manly function, not to say (in any) sacerdotal office."
Tertullian, On the Veiling of Virgins,9(A.D. 207),in ANF,IV:33
"When a widow is appointed she is not ordained but she shall be chosen by name.. . Let the widow be instituted by word only and let her be reckoned among the widows. But she shall not be ordained, because she does not offr oblation nor has a ministry. But ordination is for clergy on account of their ministry. But the widow is appointed for prayer, and this is of all ."
Hippolytus,Apostolic Tradition,1,4,5(A.D. 215)in AT,20-21
"We do not permit our 'women to teach in the Church,' but only to pray and hear those that teach; for our Master and Lord, Jesus Himself, when He sent us the twelve to make disciples of the people and of the nations, did nowhere send out women to preach, although He did not want such. For there were with us the mother of our Lord and His sisters; also Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Martha and Mary the sisters of Lazarus; Salome, and certain others. For, had it been necessary for women to teach, He Himself had first commanded these also to instruct the people with us. For 'if the head of the wife be the man,' it is not reasonable that the rest of the body should govern the head. "
Didascalia fragment in Constitutions of the Holy Apostles),III:6(A.D. 225),in ANF, VII:427-8
"But that woman, who previously by wiles and deceitfulness of the demon was attempting many things for the deceiving of the faithful, among other things by which she had deceived many, also had frequently dared this; to pretend that with an invocation not to be contemned she sanctified bread and celebrated, the Eucharist, and to offer sacrifice to the Lord, not without the sacrament of the accustomed utterance; and also to baptize many, making use of the usual and lawful words of interrogation, that nothing might seem to be different from the ecclesiastical rule."
Firmilian fragment in Cyprian's Letters, 74:10(A.D.256),in ANF,V:393
"Likewise in the case of their deaconesses, and generally in the case of those who have been enrolled among their clergy, let the same form be observed. And we mean by deaconesses such as have assumed the habit, but who, since they have no imposition of hands, are to be numbered only among the laity."
Council of Nicea, Canon 19 (A.D. 325),in NPNF2,XIV:40
"PRESBYTIDES, as they are called, or female presidents, are not to be appointed in the Church."
Council of Laodicea,Canon 11 (A.D. 360),in NPNF2,XIV:129
"A WOMAN shall not receive the laying on of hands as a deaconess under forty years of age, and then only after searching examination. And if, after she has had hands laid on her and has continued for a time to minister, she shall despise the grace of God and give herself in marriage, she shall be anathematized and the man united to her."
Council of Chalcedon,Canon 15 (A.D. 451),in NPNF2,XIV:279
"It is true that in the Church there is an order of deaconesses, but not for being priestess, nor for any kind of work of administration, but for the sake of the dignity of the female sex, either at the time of Baptism, or of examining the sick or suffering, so that the naked body of a female may not be seen by men administrating sacred rites, but by the deaconess."
Epiphanius,Panarion,79:3(A.D. 377),in JUR,II:76
"[W]hen one is required to preside over the Church, and to be entrusted with the care of so many souls, the whole female sex must retire before the magnitude of the task, and the majority of men also; and we must bring forward those who to a large extent surpass all others, and soar as much above them in excellence of spirit as Saul overtopped the whole Hebrew nation in bodily stature: or rather far more."
John Chrysostom,On the Priesthood,2:2(A.D. 386),in NPNF1,IX:40
"Now, as to women's baptizing, we let you know that there is no small peril to those that undertake it. Therefore we do not advise you to it; for it is dangerous, or rather wicked and impious. For if the 'man be the head of the woman,' and he be originally ordained for the priesthood, it is not just to abrogate the order of the creation, and leave the principal to come to the extreme part of the body. For the woman is the body of the man, taken from his side, and subject to him, from whom she was separated for the procreation of children. For says He, 'He shall rule over thee.' For the principal part of the woman is the man, as being her head. But if in the foregoing constitutions we have not permitted them to teach, how will any one allow them, contrary to nature, to perform the office of a priest? For this is one of the ignorant practices of the Gentile atheism, to ordain women priests to the female deities, not one of the constitutions of Christ. For if baptism were to be administered by women, certainly our Lord would have been baptized by His own mother, and not by John; or when He sent us to baptize, He would have sent along with us women also for this purpose. But now He has nowhere, either by constitution or by writing, delivered to us any such thing; as knowing the order of nature, and the decency of the action; as being the Creator of nature, and the Legislator of the constitution."
Apostolic Constitutions,9:3(A.D. 400),in ANF,VII:429
"I, the same, make a constitution in regard to virgins: A virgin is not ordained, for we have no such command from the Lord ; for this is a state of voluntary trial, not for the reproach of marriage, but an account of leisure for piety."
Apostolic Constitutions,8:24(A.D. 400),in ANF,VII:493
"A widow is not ordained; yet if she has lost her husband a great while, and has lived soberly and unblameably, and has taken extraordinary care of her family, as Judith and Anna --those women of great reputation--let her be chosen into the order of widows."
Apostolic Constitutions,8:25(A.D. 400),in ANF,VII:493
"A deaconess does not bless, nor perform anything belonging to the office of presbyters or deacons, but only is to keep the doors, and to minister to the presbyters in the baptizing of women, on account of decency."
Apostolic Constitutions,8:28(A.D. 400),in ANF,VII:494
"They give such great positions of leadership to women that women even receive the honor of the priesthood among them, for they say that,in the same city of Pepzua, Christ was revealed to Quintilla and Priscilla in the form of a women."
Augustine,On Heresies,1:27(A.D. 429),in AAOH,38
"Altogether no women deacons are to be ordained."
Council of Orange,Canon 26 (A.D. 441),in NPNF2,XIV:130
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