Catholic Candle note: Genuine conservatives and uncompromising traditionalists are extremely rare. Most people who consider themselves conservative and uncompromising, are really only “conserving” the less extreme liberalism of a few decades ago. They are not real conservatives, only less liberal than the society around them now. They are not fully traditional, merely less-modernist.
One example of their liberal contamination is in regards to their position on the role of women. Pseudo-traditionalists have so fully accepted a less radical version of the feminist heresy1 around them, that when they learn their position contradicts the truth taught by the Doctors of the Catholic Church, they assure themselves that the Doctors must be wrong.
The truth is that human nature does not change, nor does God’s Plan, nor do the differences which Providence established between the sexes. Those weak Catholics who have imbibed so much of the poison of our times, think wrongly that:
Anyone who considers the following article to be “out of date” or “unenlightened”, only shows the extent to which he has already accepted the norms of today’s corrupt society (feminism) and the revolt against God and Nature.

Raising children well is the Great Work of a woman’s life.2 Hers is a noble calling, a glorious vocation! This is true on a natural and on a supernatural level. Her role is magnificent and indispensable3, viz., to form great saints and great men and women in the next generation of Catholic and civil society—although such greatness will often not be recognized by the world. This Great Work has more lasting value and is more rewarding in itself, than the work her husband is doing, such as working in commerce to support their family.
Here is how the poet, William Ross Wallace, lauded motherhood on a natural level:

The Hand that Rocks the Cradle is the Hand that Rules the World

BLESSINGS on the hand of women! Angels guard its strength and grace.
In the palace, cottage, hovel, oh, no matter where the place;
Would that never storms assailed it, rainbows ever gently curled,
For the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.
Infancy’s the tender fountain, power may with beauty flow,
Mothers first to guide the streamlets, from them souls unresting grow —
Grow on for the good or evil, sunshine streamed or evil hurled,
For the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.
Woman, how divine your mission, here upon our natal sod;
Keep—oh, keep the young heart open always to the breath of God!
All true trophies of the ages are from mother-love impearled,
For the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.
Blessings on the hand of women! Fathers, sons, and daughters cry,
And the sacred song is mingled with the worship in the sky –
Mingles where no tempest darkens, rainbows evermore are hurled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.
On a supernatural level also, raising children well is the Great Work of a woman’s life. This is God’s Plan for women and their crucial role in the human race and the salvation of souls.
In his autobiographical work, The Confessions, St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, paid great tribute to his dear mother, St. Monica. He recalled his mother’s:
devout conversation towards You [i.e., God], her holy tenderness and attentiveness towards us ....4
St. Augustine extolled his mother for many things, e.g., because:
she acted mercifully, and from the heart, forgave her debtors their debts .... She had been the wife of one man, had requited her parents, had guided her house piously, was well-reported of, for good works, had brought up children .... [St. Monica devoted herself to] care such as she might if she had been mother of us all; served us as if she had been daughter of us all. Id.
St. Monica was not only a saintly instrument in converting her son, the great St. Augustine, but she was also the instrument for converting her pagan husband and doing countless other good works. St. Augustine tenderly implored God for the soul of his saintly mother, in these words:
[L]et her rest in peace with her husband, before and after whom she was married to no other man; whom she obeyed with patience, bringing fruit to thee that she might also win him for thee.5 Id.
Truly, a Catholic mother who lives well her high calling of motherhood, should be revered! Her life is a great success! She has done important work on a natural and on a supernatural level!

How God perfectly equips women for this Great Work of their lives

Here is an analogy: God intends the organ of the eye for seeing. Therefore, God designed the eye with everything necessary for doing this task well. Likewise, God made a woman for the Great Work of raising children, and thus God designed her with everything necessary for doing this task well.
For good reason, women are called the softer sex. God made women’s bodies softer and more delicate than men’s bodies. God made women to bear children and they are her glory. This is so central to women’s life that as soon as Eve sinned, God cursed her to pain and labor when she brought children into the world. Whereas men want to leave some other, noteworthy accomplishment behind them when they die, women want to leave children.
Everything in a woman’s whole life, including the toys she played with as a child, is, and should be, geared to the Great Work of her life, viz., raising children well.6
Her Great Work is the reason God made a woman more compassionate, more nurturing, sweeter, more tender, more generous,7 more loving, better listeners, more focused on personality and on detail. God made her with exactly the qualities necessary for her to serve as the Heart of the Home. She would make a poor Head of the Home, just as her husband would make a poor Heart. Because God made her the way He did, a mother is much more likely than a father is, to compassionately notice one of their children is “having a bad day”, or needs comforting, etc.
To fulfill her life’s work well, a woman’s natural makeup makes her more emotional8 and she reasons less clearly than her husband. This is complemented and completed by her husband reasoning more carefully and being less emotional.9 Together, they are the parents that children need, to be raised well. She is her husband’s helpmate10 and his partner in their crucial vocation of raising their children well.11 This vocation is theirs together. They should be lifelong best-friends and companions.12
Although the husband has a different role13 in their family than the wife does, it is a complementary role.14 That the sexes are complementary means that neither sex has all strengths and that both need the help of the other. Each sex has strengths to be used to improve the weaknesses of the other.
Because God made woman the way He did and made her for this Great Work of her life, it is good and natural for a girl to play with girls’ toys, e.g., dolls and not guns.15 This is part of her preparation for her Great Work.
But it is also good, natural, and according to God’s plan, for girls to interact differently than boys in countless other ways, throughout girlhood, and all along the way to adulthood and throughout life, learning and perfecting the homemaking arts, showing greater compassion (than their brothers do) for younger siblings who need help, who are crying, etc. All of this is natural and is good practice for the Great Work of women’s lives.
The Catholic Church and all good civilizations have seen how essential good women are, and the Church and these civilizations shelter and protect women16 to provide the optimal conditions for their Great Work. Among countless other ways girls and women should be protected, is to provide them with separate education.17

A woman should pursue holiness for her own soul’s sake and also to prepare for her life’s Great Work

God expects Catholic women (as well as Catholic men) to sanctify themselves and grow in holiness for their individual perfection.18 But God also expects a Catholic woman to sanctify her soul to prepare herself for the Great Work of her life, viz., raising the children God sends her, as perfectly as possible. For how could she foster sanctity and virtue in her children if she is not virtuous and holy herself? She “cannot give what she does not have” (as the proverb says).

A woman should perfect her intellect for herself and to prepare for her life’s Great Work

God expects women to perfect all of the talents and faculties (i.e., abilities) He has given them, especially their highest faculty—their intellects. The best way for them to perfect their intellects is through a Catholic Liberal Education. It forms and perfects the mind by knowing the highest truths, about God and the things of God, both in the natural and supernatural order. This is education par excellence! It is the best for everybody, because they have a rational nature. This is a beginning of that knowing which is the primary joy of heaven, viz., the Beatific Vision.19
This education makes a woman wise in an important way. A man is even more logical than a woman and so a Catholic Liberal Education perfects his intellect even more.20 A husband should have a Catholic Liberal Education too, helping to further make him wiser21 than his wife and increase his fitness to be head of his family.
An important part of woman’s Great Work of raising children well, is perfecting the children’s minds. Again, the mother cannot give what she does not have. Although a Catholic Liberal Education is ideal for everyone, in any time and place, this education is even more crucial in our times, where an uncompromising family almost never has a good school to which to send their children.
Homeschooling is not merely teaching the multiplication tables and phonics. Parents know that raising and educating children involves countless discussions (and answering their questions) on virtually everything, including the highest truths. Plainly, to do a good job in a woman’s Great Work of raising children well, she must, as much as she can, have an intellect perfected with the important truths, so necessary for homeschooling.

Women religious are still women, with a womanly life

The above summary principally concerns the majority of women, whom God calls to the married state. However, this summary also applies similarly to most women religious, whom God calls to teach children, or be helpers of priests, unselfishly and humbly living the life of religious who are women, including practicing the womanly domestic arts. Women religious are brides of Christ, faithful, generous, and submissive to their Divine Spouse.

Women’s employment before they are married

In addition to:
it often happens that a woman has the time and need to earn money to repay school debts, and support herself before getting married. (Further, she should keep busy because an idle life harms virtue.)
Thus, a young woman in this situation should obtain employment in one of the “helping professions”, especially one which is most aligned with, and constitutes further preparation for her Great Work of raising children, such as to teach children or to be a nurse.
She should not be a doctor, a lawyer22, or practice a similar profession, for three reasons:
  1. The years of this training and the cost would rarely “pay off” because she would usually meet her husband and get married before she finished her studies or at least before paying off her additional school debts. Further, this increased debt, as well as her time and effort obtaining this training, might easily create (or increase) the temptation to work outside of the home after marriage.
  2. Such employment is suited only for the most prudent and careful-thinking men, since such professions principally require the greatest prudence and the most careful thinking.
  3. Such professions are detrimental to her God-given role as man’s helpmate and assistant, rather than man’s boss and an authority over him.23 Such employment is both against the natural role God gave her as a woman and also will make it harder for her to be an obedient and submissive wife when she gets married.
A woman should not hold political office, be a police officer, a soldier or have a similar job for two reasons:
  1. This type of job opposes the way God made her because she would be wielding authority over men24; and
  2. Such work opposes her God-given nature as a nurturer, compassionate, a comforter, etc. Being a policeman, soldier, etc., would require a woman to be aggressive, to harden herself, twisting and distorting the way God made women, to her detriment and the detriment of the Great Work of her life, viz., raising children well.25
During her years with children at home, a woman’s Great Work requires so much time, attention, devotion, and focus that a conscientious mother would wish there were “two of her” to accomplish all she rightly wants to accomplish at home, and all the good she wants to do for her family. There is no question of her having “too much time on her hands” and not having enough important tasks to accomplish.26
This is why the Catholic Church teaches that one indication that a man isn’t ready to marry, is if he cannot financially support his family without his wife earning an income. Anyone who thinks a mother’s work outside the home is more important than her family and homemaking duties, fails to understand the Great Work of her life, similar to failing to appreciate the importance of prayer.
Considering anyone else as an acceptable substitute for a mother being at home with her children, is a failure not only to understand Catholic teaching, but is also a failure to understand the family on even a natural level (although this natural truth was accepted and was obvious even to non-Catholics, until a few decades ago).
Anyone who thinks it is better for a mother to not be home with her children than to live in poverty or to default on their home mortgage, etc., fears poverty too much and fears sin too little27, and fails to appreciate the eternal importance of the Great Work of a woman’s life.

A woman’s work after her children are grown

After her children are grown and are engaged in their own lives’ vocations, it is important for a woman (like a man in retirement) to continue to spend her life doing as much good as she can. God gives us additional years of life because he wants us to do additional work for Him, not merely to live for our own amusement.
Besides a woman continuing to grow in holiness and continuing to study the Catholic Faith and increase her knowledge of important truths, it would often be good for her (especially if she is a widow and so no longer has a husband to care for), to perform additional good works like the ones she performed in her earlier years, e.g., helping to homeschool her grandchildren (and the children of other young families), or helping care for the sick and elderly, etc.

Beware of supposing that these truths of the Catholic Faith and of the Natural Law, are “out-of-date”!

If this article seems to you merely Catholic common sense (and also natural common sense), then congratulations! You have managed to avoid the poison of the world (at least until now, and at least on this issue).
If you think that the above article is out-of-date or “unenlightened”, then beware! You have been poisoned by the feminist heresy which is all around us!
Pope Leo XIII warns us against this error of rationalizing the rejection of St. Thomas’ teachings by falsely supposing it is out-of-date. Pope Leo XIII declares that St. Thomas’ doctrine:

corresponds to the necessities not only of one historical period but rather of all times and periods of history ....28

St. Thomas faithfully teaches the true role and dignity of women! This is a doctrine suited for “all times and periods of history”. It is the feminists who are perverse, who combat and deny nature, trying to make themselves like men.
In his Syllabus of Errors, Pope Pius IX infallibly condemned the error that the principles of St. Thomas are not suitable for our modern times. Here are his words:


The method and principles by which the old scholastic doctors [viz., St. Thomas Aquinas and his disciples] cultivated theology are no longer suitable to the demands of our times and to the progress of the sciences.29
Among the principles of St. Thomas, are those set forth above, concerning the role of women. These Thomistic principles are admirably suited “to the demands of our times”, even though (and especially because) these principles are attacked on every side by Our Lord’s enemies!
St. Thomas’ teaching is not only his, but he synthesizes the finest wisdom and the truth from all of the other Fathers and Doctors put together. Here is how Pope St. Pius X praises St. Thomas:
He [St. Thomas Aquinas] enlightened the Church more than all the other Doctors together; a man can derive more profit from his books in one year than from a lifetime spent in pondering the philosophy of others.30
Because St. Thomas so magnificently surpasses all other Doctors and teachers, the Church calls him the Common Doctor, that is, the best teacher to learn from on any question. As Pope Pius XI declares, “the Church has adopted his philosophy for her own.31
When we see St. Thomas repeat and expound on the teaching of St. Paul on the role of women, we see how “his [viz.., St. Thomas’] doctrine is in harmony with Divine revelation”, as Pope Pius XII declares.32
Feminism is one of the most pernicious modernist errors and we see how St. Thomas is the remedy against it. Here is the way Pope Pius XI declared how St. Thomas is the antidote to all modern errors:
Again, if we are to avoid the errors which are the source and fountain-head of all the miseries of our time, the teaching of [St. Thomas] Aquinas refutes the theories propounded by Modernists in every sphere ....33
With the grave error of feminism, as well as the rest of modernism, we see how far the world has strayed from the truth! St. Thomas is the remedy!
Just as all Catholics should especially revere St. Thomas for his unique greatness, likewise the feminists and other modernists especially fear him for that same reason. Here is how Pope Pius XI explains this truth:
[St.] Thomas refutes the theories propounded by Modernists in every sphere .... Modernists are so amply justified in fearing no Doctor of the Church so much as Thomas Aquinas.34


The Great Work of a woman’s life is to raise children well. This is a sublime vocation!
She cannot do this well without preparing herself and living the role of a Catholic woman. She must embrace her feminine character, preparing herself by:
Satan and his servants oppose and attack patriarchy, that is, the rule by the father. But we see that a virtuous patriarchy is good, necessary and is Willed by God.
The current, politically correct program of Satan’s followers, is to oppose all (so-called) “sexism”, that is, the unequal treatment of individuals based on their sex. But God Wills this different, unequal treatment of the sexes because they are different and unequal (viz., in as many ways as they are different). Equal treatment of unequals is perverse, unjust and satanic!
There is no version of feminism that can be reconciled with Nature or with Divine revelation. There is no good feminism; there is no true feminism; there is no Biblical feminism; there is no Catholic feminism. Feminism is satanic and inherently evil, since it deliberately contradicts Nature and God’s plan.
Let us faithfully and docilely live the teachings of the Catholic Church and the Natural Law on the roles of men and women, and on all other matters! Let us combat feminism and the other principal errors of our apostate times!
  1. Heresy is an error against the Catholic Faith. Here is how St. Thomas Aquinas explains this crucial truth:
    We are speaking of heresy now as denoting a corruption of the Christian Faith. Now it does not imply a corruption of the Christian faith, if a man has a false opinion in matters that are not of faith, for instance, in questions of geometry and so forth, which cannot belong to the faith by any means; but only when a person has a false opinion about things belonging to the faith.
    Now a thing may be of the faith in two ways, as stated above; in one way, directly and principally, e.g. the articles of faith; in another way, indirectly and secondarily, e.g. those matters, the denial of which leads to the corruption of some article of faith; and there may be heresy in either way, even as there can be faith.
    Summa, IIa IIae, Q.11, a.2, respondeo (emphasis added).
  2. Because raising her children well is the Great Work of a woman’s life, Sacred Scripture infallibly connects that work directly to a woman’s own salvation. For example, here is one way St. Paul makes that connection:
    She [viz., a woman] shall be saved through childbearing; if she continues in faith, and love, and sanctification, with sobriety.”
    1 Timothy 2:15.
    Because this is the Great Work of her life, St. Paul says that “younger [women] should marry, bear children, be mistresses of families”. 1 Timothy, 5:14.
  3. In 1917, Pope Benedict XV emphasized how women do tremendous good or evil for civilization. Here are his words:
    It is in fact amazing what the woman can do for the good of the human race, or for its ruin; if she should leave the common — [i.e., traditional]—road, both the civil and domestic orders are easily upset.
    With the decline in religion, cultured women have lost their piety, also their sense of shame; many, in order to take up occupations ill-befitting their sex, took to imitating men; others abandoned the duties of the house-wife, for which they were fashioned, to cast themselves recklessly into the current of life.
    Pope Benedict XV, Encyclical Natalis trecentesimi, (Woman in the Modern World), December, 27 1917.
  4. The Confessions of St. Augustine, Bk. IX, ch. 13.
  5. In our modernist age, how quickly and rashly we assume that our loved ones are already in heaven, based on evidence which is no better than the death of a typical practicing Catholic! By contrast, St. Monica was a genuine saint and we see here that her son, a Doctor of the Church, did not assume she was in heaven.

    To read more about how the creeping modernism of our time makes even Traditional Catholics quick to assume a person is in heaven, read this article: ../priests/sspx-travels-the-conciliar-path-toward-promoting-universal-salvation.html
    Here is one example of the “new” liberal SSPX declaring one of its deceased priests to have entered heaven on the day he died. ../priests/sspx-travels-the-conciliar-path-toward-promoting-universal-salvation.html
  6. Raising her children well, not other works, is the Great Work for which God intended women. In other works, such as being partners in business, men help other men better than women do. Here is one way St. Thomas Aquinas, greatest Doctor of the Catholic, explains this truth:
    It was necessary that woman be made, as Scripture says, as a helpmate to the male; not indeed as a helpmate in some other work, as some have said, since in any other work a male can be more conveniently helped by another male than by woman; but as a helper in generation.
    Summa Ia, Q.92, a.1, respondeo.
    Sacred Scripture infallibly says the same thing in many ways. For example, here is one way St. Paul states this truth:
    [S]he [viz., woman] shall be saved through childbearing; if she continues in faith, and love, and sanctification, with sobriety.”
    1 Timothy 2:15.
  7. Here is one way that St. Thomas teaches that truth:
    [M]en are wiser and more discerning and not so readily deceived as women are. Again, women have a disposition to be more giving. “As befits women, professing piety through good works.” 1 Timothy, 2:10.
    Quoted from Lectures on St. Matthew’s Gospel, St. Thomas Aquinas, Ch.23, #1859 (emphasis added; quote from St. Paul in the original).
    Although a man should do his best to be generous, it is more shameful for a woman to be stingy or selfish, than for a man—because it is further from how a woman should be—i.e., it is more against the way God made her.
  8. Here is one way St. Thomas Aquinas explains this truth:
    Since woman is free, she has the power of being counseled, but her counsel is powerless. The reason for this is that, due to the gentleness (mollitiem) of her nature, her reason does not firmly adhere to her counsel, but is quickly changed therefrom on account of passions, such as concupiscence, or wrath, or fear, or things of the sort.
    St. Thomas Aquinas, Commentary on Aristotle’s Treatise on Politics, Bk.1, lect.10, n.9 [159].
  9. To good women (and good men), this truth is obvious. But how ungodly is the rage of feminists when they hear this truth stated! They insist that reason is as strong in them as in men and that emotion (which interferes with clear reasoning) is as subdued in them as in men.
    Here we “smell” the strong stench of satanic pride, because feminists hate the way God made them and they hate men, but also want to be themselves just like men. Feminists bubble forth discontent, resentment, and eventually, apostasy. Satan sows discord, and his use of feminism to attack women is one of his chief works in our modern world. Men are chiefly to blame for the feminist heresy, because they have not vigilantly guided and protected women and society.
    Here is one way St. Thomas Aquinas states men’s duty to protect and guide women to avoid deceptions (including feminism):
    [M]en are wiser and more discerning and not so readily deceived as women are. ... Man is the head and counselor of the woman.
    St. Thomas Aquinas, Lectures on St. Matthew’s Gospel, Ch.23, #1859.
    Sacred Scripture infallibly teaches the same thing, e.g., “[T]he head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.” 1 Corinthians, 11:3.
    Women should be guided by their husbands (or fathers). Here is one way Sacred Scripture infallibly teaches this truth: “But if they [women] would learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is a shame for a woman to speak in the church.” 1 Corinthians, 14:35. (This same passage reminds every man of his duty to be a wise guide to his wife and daughters.)
    Although women should do their best to be prudent, it is more shameful for a man to be foolish, than for a woman—because it is further from how men should be—i.e., more against the way God made them.
    Feminists have contempt for the Great Work of their lives, viz., raising children well. It is Satan’s masterstroke to make modern women aggressive, hard, and angry, and so they are ruined for the Great Work of their lives. This is like Satan’s success making man soft, “sensitive” and emotional, and so ruining him for the Great Work of his own life.
    The saints must always be our models, including our models for the roles of the sexes. There are no feminists who are saints and no saints who are feminists. The saints follow the nature and roles God gave them, humbly, faithfully, and joyfully.
    Here, e.g., are the words of the humble anti-feminist, the great St. Teresa of Avila, when she was writing about a particular spiritual matter:
    [T]here are no words whereby to explain,—at least, none for us women, who know so little; learned men can explain it better.
    St. Teresa of Avila, Autobiography, ch.27, §4.
    The Blessed Virgin Mary is the true model of wise and happy women. True holiness, true happiness, and true devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary always decrease in the same proportion in which a person imbibes the poison of feminism.
    Feminism is anarchy in the family, which Satan designed to destroy this indispensable natural and supernatural pillar of civilization. For a further treatment of this truth, read this article: ../faith/feminism-is-anarchy-in-the-family.html
  10. God willed woman to be man’s helpmate. Sacred Scripture infallibly explains why God created woman, in these words:
    [T]he Lord God said: It is not good for man to be alone: let us make him a help like unto himself.
    Genesis, 2:18.
    Sacred Scripture infallibly says the same thing in other ways too, e.g.: “[M]an was not created for the woman: but the woman for the man” (1 Corinthians, 11:9) to help him raise a family.
  11. The vocation of raising children includes raising them fully and well. Here is one way the Summa explains this common sense truth:
    For nature intends not only the begetting of offspring, but also its education and development until it reach the perfect state of man as man, and that is the state of virtue.
    Suppl., Q.41, a.1, respondeo.
  12. Here is one way St. Thomas explains this truth:
    The greater the friendship, the firmer and the more lasting it is. Now, between husband and wife there seems to be the greatest friendship; for they join ... for the sharing of all of home life; hence a sign of this is that man leaves even his father and mother for the sake of his wife.
    Summa Contra Gentiles, St. Thomas Aquinas, ch.123, §6 (emphasis added).
  13. The Summa touches upon these different roles as follows:
    Although the father ranks above the mother, the mother has more to do with the offspring than the father has, or we may say that woman was made chiefly in order to be man’s helpmate in relation to the offspring, whereas the man was not made for this purpose.
    Suppl., Q.44, a.2 ad 1 (emphasis added).
  14. Pope Pius XI repeated the important Catholic teaching that the sexes are different and complementary. Here are the pope’s words:
    [T]he two [sexes are] quite different in organism, in temperament, [and] in abilities .... These [viz., men and women], in keeping with the wonderful designs of the Creator, are destined to complement each other in the family and in society, precisely because of their differences ....
    Divini Illius Magistri, (On Christian Education), Pope Pius XI, §68 (emphasis added; bracketed words added for clarity).
    Here is one way that St. Thomas Aquinas teaches regarding the complementariness of men’s and women’s roles and work:
    [I]n other animals, there is communication between male and female only insofar as what was said above, namely only for the procreation of offspring; but in humans male and female cohabitate not only for the sake of the procreation of children, but also on account of those things that are necessary for human life. It is immediately apparent that human works that are necessary for life are divided between male and female; such that some are appropriate for the man, such as are to be done outside, and others for the wife, such as sewing and other things that are to be done at home. Therefore, they are sufficient for one another as far as each brings in his own works for the common good.
    St. Thomas Aquinas, Commentary on Aristotle’s Ethics, Bk VIII, lect. 12, n.20 [1271] (emphasis added).
    God intends the difference and inequality in the creatures He made, as part of the orderliness of creation. For a fuller explanation of that Providential truth, read this article: ../faith/god-wills-the-natural-inequalities-between-different-persons-and-between-different-peoples.html
  15. Further, because God made man and wife to be lifelong best-friends, God made marriage to be indissoluble, even under the Natural Law. Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas, Suppl., Q.67, a.1. This shows that divorce is evil and should be forbidden, even among pagans and Protestants.
    Pope Pius XI repeated the important, perennial teaching of the Catholic Faith and the Natural Law, that the differences in the sexes should be fostered, and not denied and suppressed (as the enemies of Our Lord attempt to do). Here are the pope’s words:
    These [viz., men and women], in keeping with the wonderful designs of the Creator, are destined to complement each other in the family and in society, precisely because of their differences, which therefore ought to be maintained and encouraged during their years of formation, with the necessary distinction and corresponding separation ....
    Divini Illius Magistri, (On Christian Education), Pope Pius XI, §68 (emphasis added; bracketed words added for clarity).
  16. St. Thomas Aquinas gives an example of how men should protect women, in connection with Our Lord condemning the Scribes for “devouring the houses of widows”. St. Thomas explains that the Scribes preyed upon widows precisely because they were without the protection of their husbands. Here is St. Thomas’ example, quoting the Medieval Scriptural commentator, Theophylactus:
    Feigning to be their protectors, the Scribes used to come to women who were left without the protection of their husbands, and by a pretense of prayer, a reverend exterior and hypocrisy, they used to deceive widows and thus also devour the houses of the rich.
    Catena Aurea on St. Mark, St. Thomas Aquinas, ch.12, v.40 (emphasis added).
    Sacred Scripture infallibly teaches the same thing, viz., that men should protect women. For example, “[T]he head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.” 1 Corinthians, 11:3.
  17. As a good spiritual father, Pope Pius XI repeated the important, perennial teaching of the Catholic Faith and the Natural Law, that girls and women should be protected and their feminine nature fostered, by education which is separate whenever possible, from boys and men. Here are the pope’s words:
    False also and harmful to Christian education is the so-called method of “coeducation”. This too, by many of its supporters, is founded upon [the heresy of] naturalism and the denial of original sin; but by all, upon a deplorable confusion of ideas that mistakes a leveling promiscuity and equality, for the legitimate association of the sexes. The Creator has ordained and disposed perfect union of the sexes only in matrimony, and, with varying degrees of contact, in the family and in society. Besides there is not in nature itself, which fashions the two quite different in organism, in temperament, in abilities, anything to suggest that there can be or ought to be promiscuity, and much less equality, in the training of the two sexes. These, in keeping with the wonderful designs of the Creator, are destined to complement each other in the family and in society, precisely because of their differences, which therefore ought to be maintained and encouraged during their years of formation, with the necessary distinction and corresponding separation, according to age and circumstances. These principles, with due regard to time and place, must, in accordance with Christian prudence, be applied to all schools, particularly in the most delicate and decisive period of formation, that, namely, of adolescence; and in gymnastic exercises and deportment, special care must be had of Christian modesty in young women and girls, which is so gravely impaired by any kind of exhibition in public.”
    Divini Illius Magistri, (On Christian Education), Pope Pius XI, §68 (emphasis added; bracketed words added for clarity).
  18. One of the realities of the spiritual life and one of the differences (and inequalities) between men and women, is that God blessed women to be able to attain great spiritual perfection more easily than men. Here is how St. Teresa of Avila stated this truth, citing the authority of her spiritual director, the great man of penance, St. Peter of Alcantara:
    There are many more women than men to whom our Lord gives these [extraordinary] graces; I have heard the holy friar, Peter of Alcantara, say so, and, indeed, I know it myself. He used to say that women made greater progress in this way [of perfection] than men did; and he gave excellent reasons for his opinion, all in favor of women ....
    St. Theresa of Avila, Autobiography, ch.40, §12 (bracketed words added for clarity).
    To help women with their role in the family and with the Great Work of their life, God made women different than men in ways which also make it easier for women to reach spiritual perfection. For example,
    God made a woman more inclined to be generous and self-sacrificing, than a man (which is a great help in motherhood), helping a woman to also be more generous with God;
    God made a woman more inclined to be loving, than a man (which is a great help in motherhood), helping a woman to also be more loving with God;
    God made a woman more inclined to focus on personality, than a man (which is a great help in motherhood), helping the woman to also cooperate with God’s work in developing a personal relationship with Our Lord, which is the spiritual life;
    God made her more ready to obey than her husband (to fulfill her role in the family), helping her to also be more ready to obey God; and
    God made a woman to want to lean on her husband and seek his support, making her more ready to also lean on God, which is a great help in acquiring holiness.
  19. Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas, Suppl., Q.92, a.1.
  20. St. Thomas states this truth in the following way:
    Subjection is twofold. One is servile, by virtue of which a superior makes use of a subject for his own benefit; and this kind of subjection began after sin. There is another kind of subjection which is called economic or civil, whereby the superior makes use of his subjects for their own benefit and good; and this kind of subjection existed even before sin. For good order would have been wanting in the human family if some were not governed by others wiser than themselves. So, by such a kind of subjection woman is naturally subject to man, because in man the discretion of reason predominates.
    Summa, Ia, Q.92, a.1, ad 2.
  21. Although men and women are both rational, reason is more predominant in men—they think more abstractly. Women are more emotional—they are more inclined to bring personality and feeling into their reasoning). Thus, men are able to advance further in the two types of wisdom provided in a Catholic Liberal Education:
    It is wisdom to know the highest truths about God (as well as other high truths), because they perfect the intellect and because they are so magnificent; and
    It is wisdom to know the important truths which help us to live well and live according to our rational nature, e.g., the moral science of ethics.
    Summa, Ia, Q.45., a.1, respondeo; & Summa, Ia, Q.45., a.3, respondeo.
    Both types of wisdom perfect the intellect, so men and women should pursuit both.
  22. Here is one way that St. Thomas teaches this common sense truth of both nature and religion:
    If therefore they [viz., women] ask and dispute in public, it would be a sign of shamelessness, and this is shameful to them. Hence it also follows that in law the office of advocate is forbidden to women.
    St. Thomas Aquinas, Lectures on 1 Corinthians, 14, lect. 7, n. 881.
  23. The reason is that it is not woman’s role to lead (exercise leadership) in society. This is why St. Paul explained that “I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to use authority over the man: but to be in silence.” 1 Timothy, 2:12.
  24. Isaiah mentions the rule of women as a measure of how corrupt a society (viz., Israel) is. Here are Isaiah’s words: “As for my people, their oppressors have stripped them, and women have ruled over them”. Isaias 3:12.
    Summarizing the Divine Law (from St. Paul) and Natural Law (from Aristotle) concerning the perversity of a woman being in charge of a government, the Summa teaches:
    According to the Apostle (1 Tim. 2:11; Titus 2:5), woman is in a state of subjection: wherefore she can have no spiritual jurisdiction, since the Philosopher [Aristotle] also says (Ethic. viii) that it is a corruption of public life when the government comes into the hands of a woman.
    Supp. Q.19, a.3, ad 4 (emphasis added; bracketed word added for clarity).
    This corruption of having a woman rule is obvious from the fact that she must not even rule her own family. Rather, she must obey her husband. St. Paul commands: “Wives, be subject to your husbands”. Colossians, 3:18. Therefore, how much more perverse it is for a woman to have authority over, and be the head of, all of the families of a country by being the head of the country!
  25. A man’s role is to protect his family in both spiritual and temporal matters. A woman’s role is to nurture her family and be a helpmate for her husband.
  26. Luring mothers to leave their homes and children to join the workforce of businesses is one of the chief tools of communism and is one of the main ways Russia has spread its errors. Here is how Pope Pius XI explained this truth:
    Communism is particularly characterized by the rejection of any link that binds woman to the family and the home, and her emancipation is proclaimed as a basic principle. She is withdrawn from the family and the care of her children, to be thrust instead into public life and collective production under the same conditions as man. The care of home and children then devolves upon the collectivity.
    Divini Redemptoris - On atheistic communism, Pope Pius XI, §11.
    Pius XI condemns married women working outside the home, in the following words:
    Neither this emancipation of the woman is real, nor is it the reasonable and worthy liberty convenient to the Christian and noble mission of the woman and wife. It is the corruption of the feminine nature and maternal dignity, as well as the perversion of all the family, since the husband lacks his wife, the children their mother, and the entire family her vigilant guard.
    On the contrary, this false liberty and unnatural equality with man is harmful for the woman herself, because at the moment that she steps down from the royal domestic throne to which she was raised by the Gospel, quickly she will fall into the ancient slavery of Paganism, becoming a mere instrument of man.
    Pope Pius XI, Casti connubii, #75 (emphasis added).
  27. Our focus should be spiritual. Our material wants should be few and simple. Our Lord teaches us:
    Be not solicitous therefore, saying, What shall we eat: or what shall we
    drink, or wherewith shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the heathens seek. For your Father knoweth that you have need of all these things. Seek ye therefore first the kingdom of God, and his justice, and all these things shall be added unto you.
    St. Matthew’s Gospel, 6:31-33.
    St. Paul instructs us in the simplicity we need: “But, having food and wherewith to be covered, with these we are content”. 1 Timothy, 6:8.
  28. Cum Hoc Sit, Pope Leo XIII, August 4, 1880.
  29. Emphasis added; bracketed words added for clarity.
    In Quanta Cura, Pope Pius IX used his ex cathedra (infallible) authority to condemn this error (#13) as part of a syllabus of errors condemned and attached to Quanta Cura. Regarding these condemnations, the pope said:
    We, truly mindful of Our Apostolic duty, and especially solicitous about our most holy religion, about sound doctrine and the salvation of souls divinely entrusted to Us, and about the good of human society itself, have decided to lift our voice again. And so all and each evil opinion and doctrine individually mentioned in this letter, by Our Apostolic authority We reject, proscribe and condemn; and We wish and command that they be considered as absolutely rejected, proscribed and condemned by all the sons of the Catholic Church.
    Thus, Pope Pius IX’s condemnation fulfills the conditions for infallibility set out in Vatican I’s document, Pastor Aeternus, because the pope was: 1) carrying out his duty as pastor and teacher of all Christians; 2) in accordance with his supreme apostolic authority; 3) on matters of faith or morals; 4) to be held by the universal Church.
  30. Motu Proprio, Doctoris Angelici, Pope St. Pius X, 29 June 1914, quoting Pope John XXII’s Consistorial address of 1318.
  31. Encyclical Studiorum Ducem, Pope Pius XI, 11 (emphasis added).
  32. Humani generis, Pope Pius XII, 31.
  33. Pope Pius XI, Studiorum Ducem, ¶27 (bracketed words added).
  34. Pope Pius XI, Studiorum Ducem, ¶27.