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The Duty Imposed on Women:
Submission to Man
The holy Abbot of Solesmes Dom Prosper Guéranger here reminds us of two consequences of original sin: First, that the married state becomes inferior in dignity to the state of virginity, due to “humiliation of concupiscence” brought upon it. Second, that the duty of obedience to man is imposed on the woman because of her disobedience to God’s divine command.

Sadly, these teachings of the Holy Church have been disregarded and even abandoned since Vatican Council II.

Dom Prosper Guéranger

[After original sin], forgiveness is promised; but atonement must be made. Divine justice must be satisfied, and future generations be taught that sin can never pass unpunished.

Eve is the guiltier of the two, and her sentence follows that of the serpent. Destined by God to aid man in peopling the earth with happy and faithful children, formed by this God out of man’s own substance, flesh of his flesh and bone of his bones, woman was to be on an equality with man.

But sin has subverted this Order, and God’s sentence is this: Conjugal union, notwithstanding the humiliation of concupiscence now brought upon it, is to be, as before, holy and sacred - but it is to be inferior in dignity, before both God and man, to the state of virginity, which disdains the ambitions of the flesh.

Secondly, woman shall be mother still, as she would have been in the state of innocence; but her honor shall be a burden. Moreover, she shall give birth to her children amidst cruel pains, and sometimes even death must be the consequence of her infant coming into the world. The remembrance of Eve and her prevarication will hover over every birth, and nature shall be surprised of seeing he who must reign over it arriving to live violently.

Lastly, she who was at first created to enjoy equality of honor with man, is now to forfeit her independence. Man is to be her superior, and she must obey him. For long ages, this obedience will be no better than slavery; and this degradation shall continue till that Virgin comes, whom the world shall have expected for four thousand years, and whose humility shall crush the serpent’s head.

The Virgin shall restore her sex to its rightful position, and give to Christian woman that influence of gentle persuasiveness, which is compatible with the duty imposed upon her by Divine Justice, and which can never be remitted: the duty of submission.


Blason de Charlemagne
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The Liturgical Year, vol. 4, Thursday of Septuagesima Week
Posted on March 25, 2023

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