Women & Church Praxis

Childbirth is a Blessing, Not an Occasion of Impurity

by Dr. Carrie Frederick Frost
originally published on Public Orthodoxy

“It was not until the late Byzantine era that the language of impurity entered these rites. And it was this modified and theologically problematic version of the prayers that received mass distribution through the printing press during the Ottoman period, effectively entrenching the impurity language in the Euchologion.”

Read entire article…


On Women & “Ritual Impurity” Coffee with Sister Vassa Podcast


Published on Jan 17, 2017

Sr. Vassa discusses the grisly topic we all hate to talk about, “ritual impurity” i.e., the canonical rules that limit women’s liturgical participation during times of menstruation and after childbirth.

Subscribe for Sister’s twice-weekly podcast at patreon.com/sistervassa


Churching: The Orthodox Rite of Churching the Mother and Child After Childbirth

By Dr. Carrie Frederick Frost
This four-part series explores the Orthodox rite of Churching in which mother and child re-join their church community for attending services, the prayers that are recited by the priest, and the implications and meanings of some of the language in these prayers.

Part I
The Orthodox Rite of Churching the Mother and Child After Childbirth

Churching Part II
A Focus on the Mother and the Putative Connection between Impurity and Childbirth

Part III
The Baby’s Trip Around the Altar

Part IV
Churching in the Twenty-first Century