American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A building for public, especially Christian worship.
- n. The company of all Christians regarded as a spiritual body.
- n. A specified Christian denomination: the Presbyterian Church.
- n. A congregation.
- n. Public divine worship in a church; a religious service: goes to church at Christmas and Easter.
- n. The clerical profession; clergy.
- n. Ecclesiastical power as distinguished from the secular: the separation of church and state.
- v. To conduct a church service for, especially to perform a religious service for (a woman after childbirth).
- adj. Of or relating to the church; ecclesiastical.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. An edifice or a place of assemblage specifically set apart for Christian worship.
- n. An edifice dedicated to any other kind of religious worship; a temple.
- n. The visible and organic body of Christian believers, especially as accepting the ecumenical creeds of Christendom and as exhibiting a historic continuity of organized life.
- n. The invisible and inorganic community of all those who acknowledge a supreme allegiance to Jesus Christ as their Lord and Master.
- n. A particular division of the whole body of Christians possessing the same or similar symbols of doctrine and forms of worship, and united by a common name and history; a Christian denomination: as, the Presbyterian Church; the Church of England; the Church of Rome.
- n. The organized body of Christians belonging to the same city, diocese, province, country, or nation: as, the church at Corinth; the Syrian church; in a wider sense, a body of Christians bearing a designation derived from their geographical situation, obedience to a local see, or affiliation with a national ecclesiastical organization: as, the Eastern Church; the Western Church; the Roman Church; the Anglican Church.
- n. A body of Christians worshiping in a particular church edifice or constituting one congregation.
- n. The clerical profession.
- n. Ecclesiastical authority or power, in contradistinction to the civil power, or the power of the state.
- n. By extension, some religious body not Christian, especially the Jewish: as, the Jewish church.
- n. [What constitutes a Christian church according to the Scriptures is a question on which Christian denominations widely differ. The three principal views may be distinguished as the Roman Catholic, the Protestant ecclesiastical, and the voluntary. According to Roman Catholic theologians, the church is a visible and organic body, divinely constituted, possessing “Unity, Visibility, Indefectibility, Succession from the Apostles, Universality, and Sanctity” (Faith of Catholics, I. 9), and united to its visible head on earth, the Bishop of Rome. According to the Anglican and Protestant ecclesiastical view, the church of Christ is “a permanent visible society” (Wordsworth on Mat. xvi. 18), divinely compacted, governed, and equipped, and having definite ends, a definite policy, and a historic continuity. (The Church Cyc.) According to the voluntary conception, a church is a society of persons professing faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the Saviour of men, and organized in allegiance to him for Christian work and worship, including the administration of the sacraments which he has appointed. (R. W. Dale, Manual of Congr. Principles, Comp. West. Conf., xxxv.; Thirty nine Art., xix.) The second view is held by many, perhaps a majority, in the Episcopal, Lutheran, and other hierarchical denominations; the last by a majority of those in the non-hierarchical denominations, including the Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, and Congregational.]
- n. The cathedral, or bishop's church, in distinction from the parish churches committed to simple presbyters.
- n. A title given to the Roman Catholic Church by its adherents.
- Pertaining to the church; ecclesiastical: as, church politics; a church movement; church architecture.
- Music, vocal or instrumental, in the style actually used in church services.
- The order of public worship, especially in the Anglican Church.
- A book containing the calendar, order of Morning and Evening Prayer, Litany, Collects, Epistles and Gospels, Communion Office, and Psalter, taken from the Book of Common Prayer, with the addition of all the Scripture Lessons.
- In the Anglican Church, to perform with or for (any one) the office of returning thanks in the church, after any signal deliverance, as from the dangers of childbirth.
- To accompany in attending church on some special occasion, as that on which a bride first goes to church after marriage: as, the bride was churched last Sunday; to church a newly elected town council.
- See year.
- n. countable A Christian house of worship; a building where religious services take place.
- n. countable A Christian religious organization, local or general.
- n. countable A group of people who follow the same Christian religious beliefs, local or general.
- n. uncountable, countable Religious service held at a church.
- n. A time of public worship; a worship service.
- v. transitive To conduct a religious service for (a woman) after childbirth.
- v. transitive To educate someone religiously, as in in a church.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A building set apart for Christian worship.
- n. obsolete A Jewish or heathen temple.
- n. A formally organized body of Christian believers worshiping together.
- n. A body of Christian believers, holding the same creed, observing the same rites, and acknowledging the same ecclesiastical authority; a denomination.
- n. The collective body of Christians.
- n. Any body of worshipers.
- n. The aggregate of religious influences in a community; ecclesiastical influence, authority, etc..
- v. To bless according to a prescribed form, or to unite with in publicly returning thanks in church, as after deliverance from the dangers of childbirth.
- n. the body of people who attend or belong to a particular local church
- n. a service conducted in a house of worship
- n. a place for public (especially Christian) worship
- v. perform a special church rite or service for
- n. one of the groups of Christians who have their own beliefs and forms of worship
- From Middle English chirche, from Old English ċiriċe ("church"), from Proto-Germanic *kirikōn (West Germanic *kirika), an early borrowing of Ancient Greek κυριακόν (kuriakon), neuter form of κυριακός (kuriakos, "belonging to the lord"), from κύριος (kurios, "ruler, lord"), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱēw-, *ḱwā- (“to swell, spread out, be strong, prevail”). (Wiktionary)
- Middle English chirche, from Old English cirice, ultimately from Medieval Greek kūrikon, from Late Greek kūriakon (dōma), the Lord's (house), neuter of Greek kūriakos, of the lord, from kūrios, lord; see keuə- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“I am suggesting that the intention is to end "church weddings", meaning the end of marriage rites conducted in churches which the _church_ recognizes as religiously meaningful.”
“Last night I dreamed I went to a small church in the city, an accepting church it was filled with gays and lesbians and sympathetic str8s, many of the gay men I counted as new friends.”
“Saviour would have the controversy between brother and brother to be terminated in a peculiar church, and that its judgment should be ultimately requested, he saith, _Tell the church_, not churches.”
“And after he gives them this charge, "Take heed therefore to yourselves, and to all the flock, over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God," ver. 28; all were but _one flock, one church_.”
“The church here spoken of [_in the church_] is the Church of Christ now under the New Testament: for, 1.”
“Its name is said to originate from a church built here by the Duns in 646, and in Flemish its name signifies the _church of the Duns_.”
“Christians, such as the Anglican, or the Lutheran, or the Scottish, or any other church, in its aggregate character, to be _a church_, or a distinct branch of the Catholic Church.”
“English usage, especially when he substitutes congregation for church, and insists that the people understand by _church_ what they ought to understand.”
“Gradually these important cities evolved into the residences of a supervising priest or bishop, the territory became known as a _bishopric_, and the church as a _cathedral church_.”
“It amused him to see himself going to church -- _to church_ -- to hear himself conversing on flowers and music with a young”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘church’.
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