Orthodox Christian women serve as teachers, public leaders and musicians, and were recognized as deacons in the early Christian church.
Muslim women worship separately from men, and are often given sole charge of women converts’ spiritual instruction.
Women in the Public Sphere While Orthodox Christianity and Islam practice strict adherence to their traditions’ teachings about the submission of women in public speaking and community leadership, both traditions also give high regard to historical women who modeled a high level of spiritual devotion.
The Virgin Mary, or Theotokos, is highly revered by the Orthodox, as are numerous female saints whose stories are depicted in icons, church teachings and hymns.
Matushkas, or priests’ wives, can be required to wear head coverings in the presence of a bishop.
It is more common for Orthodox women in non-Western settings to cover their heads.
Protocol for clothing, particularly in Islam, has become a symbol for what many outside these traditions see as a repression of women’s rights.
Orthodox Women and the Veil In contemporary Orthodox Christianity, the ways that women dress differ in terms of their parish’s history and geographical location.
The official Christianization of Kievan Rus' widely seen as the birth of the ROC is believed to have occurred in 988 through the baptism of the Kievan prince Vladimir and his people by the clergy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate whose constituent part the ROC remained for the next six centuries, while the Kievan see remained in the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate until 1686.