The Christian sanctioning of polygyny takes the form of nuns actually marrying Christ – down to the taking of vows and the wearing of a wedding ring to symbolize the union. The polygynous marriage between Christ and nuns is ideal from the nuns’ perspective because, while Christ assumes the protection of millions of women, the nuns take vows of celibacy. Christ’s wives would not have been celibate if polygyny’s primary purpose was the satisfaction of male sexual desires. Polygyny’s primary purpose was female protection by the best male saviors.

Christ, then, is the superhuman male role model: protection, but no sexual demands; the ability’ to be a breadwinner – or bread multiplier – should that be needed in times of famine; a willingness to die to save us •Polygamy is often Inaccurately used to mean a man having more than one wife, but it actually means either sex having more than one spouse; only polygyny means a man having more than one wife.

from our transgressious. Priests were the human manifestation – protection without sexual demands, listening without needing to burden the woman with his problems. The problem for the everyday man was that if he listened to women all day he would have left his family starving and, if he offered celibacy, the species would not have survived. The everyday man’s sexual energy was stimulated from everywhere before marriage, and then chan­neled into monogamy after marriage.

The church patriarchy, then, did what patriarchies did best – protect women and help men protea women. Which is one reason more women than men attend church. And why the more traditional the church, the more it expects men to play its savior roles. In these senses, patriarchy served women more than men.