Penitential of Theodore


Bishop Theodore of Canterbury

Theodore died in 690 AD

Source: Poenitentiale Theodori I, 14, § 17-18.
Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 47-49.

The 'penitential book' imposed by Theodore had the following prescriptions:

  1. “During the time of menstruation women should not enter into church or receive communion, neither lay women nor religious. If they presume to do so all the same, they should fast for three weeks” (§ 17).
  2. “In the same way those women should do penance, who enter a church before their blood is purified after birth, that is for forty days” (§ 18).

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