To pay homage to Saint Paul, monks would shave the crowns of their heads, but they would keep the hair around their ears and necks. This was done out of reverence for the Bible. The strange new hairstyle, which was known as the tonsure and was popular among Catholic monks in Europe throughout the middle ages, was worn by practically all of them.
What is Friar?
- The term ″friar″ refers to a brother who is also a member of one of the mendicant orders that was established in the twelfth or thirteenth century.
- This term differentiates the itinerant apostolic character of the mendicants, which is exercised broadly under the jurisdiction of a superior general, from the older monastic orders’ allegiance to a single monastery, which is formalized by their vow of stability.
Why don’t Orthodox monks cut their hair?
After obtaining the monastic tonsure as a symbol of their decision to dedicate their life to God, Orthodox monks have a long-standing custom of never cutting their hair or beards again (reminiscent of the Vow of the Nazirite ). The clerical tonsure is the same thing as the ‘first tonsure’ that was practiced in the Latin church.
What are the different types of Friars?
There are three different orders that make up the Friars Minor in today’s world: the Order of Friars Minor, also known as Brown Franciscans, the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, also known as Brown Friars with long pointed hoods, and the Order of Friars Minor Conventual, who wear grey or black habits (thus known as Grey Friars).
Do all friars have a tonsure?
- There are still monastic groups and individual monasteries that follow the ancient custom of wearing a monastic tonsure.
- Friars of the Latin Rite, such as those who belong to the Franciscan Missionaries of the Eternal Word, continue to follow this practice even though it is not obligatory of them.
- A number of sources draw parallels between the tonsure and the crown of thorns that Christ wore at his crucifixion.