Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act of serving; ministration.
  • n. One that serves as a means; an instrumentality.
  • n. The profession, duties, and services of a minister.
  • n. The Christian clergy.
  • n. The period of service of a minister.
  • n. A governmental department presided over by a minister.
  • n. The building in which such a department is housed.
  • n. The duties, functions, or term of a governmental minister.
  • n. Governmental ministers considered as a group.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Government department, at the administrative level normally headed by a minister (or equivalent rank, e.g. secretary of state), who holds it as portfolio, especially in a constitutional monarchy
  • n. The complete body of government ministers (whether or not they are in cabinet) under the leadership of a head of government (such as a prime minister)
  • n. A ministration
  • n. The active practice and education of the minister of a particular religion or faith.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of ministering; ministration; service.
  • n. Agency; instrumentality.
  • n. The office, duties, or functions of a minister, servant, or agent; ecclesiastical, executive, or ambassadorial function or profession.
  • n. The body of ministers of state; also, the clergy, as a body.
  • n. Administration; rule; term in power.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of ministering; the rendering of service; ministration.
  • n. The state of ministering or serving; agency; instrumentality.
  • n. The office or function of a minister, civil or ecclesiastical; the state of being a minister, in any sense; the exercise of a ministerial office: as, to discharge one's ministry faithfully; to enter the ministry of the gospel; to be appointed to the ministry of war.
  • n. The general or a particular body of ministers of religion; the ministerial or clerical class; the clergy or priesthood.
  • n. The body of ministers of state in a conntry; the heads of departments collectively; the executive administration: as, to form a ministry; the policy of the British ministry; the French ministry has resigned. In the United States the corresponding body is called the cabinet.
  • n. A ministerial department of government; the organization of functionaries administering a branch of public affairs; a minister and his subordinates collectively: as, the ministry of war or of justice.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. religious ministers collectively (especially Presbyterian)
  • n. the work of a minister of religion
  • n. a government department under the direction of a minister
  • n. building where the business of a government department is transacted

Etymologies

Middle English ministerie, from Old French ministere, from Latin ministerium, from minister, servant; see mei-2 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • And if the horseman of the first seal represented the chosen ministry who went forth in a glorious mission to win trophies of grace, the horseman of this seal must represent _an apostate ministry_, possessing power and authority to enforce the severest exactions upon the bread of life, thus producing a desolating spiritual famine.

    The Revelation Explained

  • See working in ministry is all about meeting needs and compromising and sacrificing to meet those needs.

    Change of Plans

  • To the left of this paper sat another, which had been folded so that a story bearing the title ministry guarantees students 'sapety was visible.

    Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

  • The primacy of prayer in ministry, which is so evident in the Cur├ę of Ars, is an important lesson for parish priests.

    Insight Scoop | The Ignatius Press Blog:

  • Any indignation, or sympathy for the MoD however, should be tempered with the knowledge that, when it comes to accountability, this ministry is the pits.

    An odd sense of values

  • CALDWELL: Bobby, obviously we've got what we call ministry advisory teams that work with the ministries to help them think through some of these challenges and issues.

    Monday, July 31, 2006

  • But this young woman -- so wholesome, so good to look at in her sweet seriousness, so strong in her womanliness and withal so useful in what she called her ministry -- this woman was -- well, she was different.

    The Calling of Dan Matthews

  • He had greatly lost interest in the questions that had occupied him while he was yet a student, and imagined himself in preparation for what he called the ministry -- never thinking how one was to minister who had not yet learned to obey, and had never sought anything but his own glorification!

    Salted with Fire

  • The work of the ministry is a warfare, not after the flesh indeed, for it is a spiritual warfare, with spiritual enemies and for spiritual purposes.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume VI (Acts to Revelation)

  • A call to the ministry is a great favour, for which those who are so called ought to give thanks to Jesus Christ: I thank Christ Jesus our

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume VI (Acts to Revelation)

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Comments

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  • the frost performs its secret ministry
    un helped by any wind

    (Coleridge)

    May 8, 2009