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>Henricus de Sergusio. Cardinalis Hostiensis

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Henricus de Sergusio

Henricus de Sergusio later became cardinal-bishop of Ostia and is also known as Cardinalis Hostiensis. He wrote the Summa super Titulis Decretalium, also called the Summa Aurea between 1250 and 1253; and the Commentaria in Quinque Decretalium Libros in 1268

Translation from the latin by John Wijngaards

Why women cannot be ordained priests

“But apart from the above mentioned rules, the right sex is required. For holy orders need to be conferred on men, not on women.As Ambrose said on the passage in Timothy ‘Women should be modest . . ., etc.’
For women may not receive the tonsure . . . . nor may their hair be cut . . . . nor can any woman exercise the power of the keys . . . .nor serve at the altar . . . . , though a woman may recite the Gospel during matins.
With regard to the ordination of deaconesses, understand ‘deaconess’ as ‘abbess’ and being ordained as ‘receiving the veil’ . . . .”

Summa Aurea co. 188

Women cannot hold male responsibilities

“A woman cannot fulfil male responsibilities . . . This applies even to noble women . . . . and also to abbesses. For even an abbess does not possess full spiritual jurisdiction since she can not hear confessions or absolve sinners, nor exercise other functions that belong to the power of the keys, however grand and noble she may be.
The reason is that, though the most blessed Virgin was more excellent than all Apostles, her Son presented the keys to them, not to her.
Neither is woman made in the image and likeness of God, as the man is;
that is why is she is like the servant of the man, since the man is the head of the woman . . . .
But also out of female modesty should a woman abstain from interfering in a convention of men.”

Commentaria I, fol. 173 r/v.

Eighteen reasons why women are worse off than men

“In many articles of our law, the situation of woman is worse than that of men” (Codex Iuris Civilis, I 7)
First, because a woman may not act as judge . . . . unless a monarch entrust this function to her . . . .
Secondly, because she cannot undertake arbitration . . . .
Thirdly, because she may not teach, preach public sermons, hear confessions or exercise any other function belonging to the power of the keys . . . .
Fourthly, because she cannot receive holy orders . . . .
Fifthly because she cannnot start a court case . . . .
In the eighth place, because she cannot launch an accusation . . . .
In the ninth place, becasue she may not adopt a child . . . .
In the fourteenth place, because her condition is worse as a witness to a will . . .
In the fifteenth place, because she cannot represent others in a court case . . . .
In the eighteenth place, in her subjection to man, and the need to veil her head, and her (defective) formation into the likeness of God.”

Commentaria I, fol. 204v.

Source: Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 83-87.

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