Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun One who is being taught the principles of Christianity.
  • noun One who is being instructed in a subject at an elementary level.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One who is under instruction in the first rudiments of Christianity; a neophyte.
  • noun Figuratively, one who is beginning to acquire a knowledge of any doctrines or principles.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Eccl.) One who is receiving rudimentary instruction in the doctrines of Christianity; a neophyte; in the primitive church, one officially recognized as a Christian, and admitted to instruction preliminary to admission to full membership in the church.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A convert to Christianity under instruction before baptism; a young Christian preparing for confirmation.

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

  • noun a new convert being taught the principles of Christianity by a catechist

Etymologies

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

[Middle English cathecumine, from Old French catechumene, from Latin catēchūmenus, from Greek katēkhoumenos, present passive participle of katēkhein, to instruct; see catechize.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French catéchumène or ecclesiastical Latin catechumenus, from Ancient Greek κατηχούμενος (katēkhoumenos, "being instructed"), present participle passive of κατηχέω (katēkheō, "sound through, instruct orally, catechise"), from κατά (kata, "down") + ἠχή (ēkhē, "sound").

Examples

  • Any kind of water may serve as the matter of the sacrament, and the water is used to baptize the catechumen "in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 1: Aachen-Assize

  • Upon discovering that I was a catechumen, they asked me why I was converting, * so I began by saying, "A few years ago, I went looking for the Church."

    Archive 2008-04-01

  • In many Christian faith communities, this occurs after a person has gone through the catechumen or baptismal classes to learn the basic of their beliefs.

    Archive 2010-03-01

  • Upon discovering that I was a catechumen, they asked me why I was converting, * so I began by saying, "A few years ago, I went looking for the Church."

    The Weekly Rant

  • And the Song of Songs puts me in mind of an embarrassing incident that occurred a few years back when I was still a catechumen.

    2008 Lenten Read-a-Thon Day 16

  • And the Song of Songs puts me in mind of an embarrassing incident that occurred a few years back when I was still a catechumen.

    Archive 2008-02-01

  • VietCatholic news: Pope's speech distorted, catechumen, dissident bloggers arrested

    Solidarity with Vietnamese blogger

  • A catechumen of the Archdiocese of Hanoi, Bui Thanh Hieu, who writes under the pen name Nguoi Buon Gio, which means “Wind Trader” has been arrested and detained for criticising the Vietnamese government's distortion of the Pope's speech to the Vietnamese Bishops at their Ad Limina visit.

    Solidarity with Vietnamese blogger

  • VietCatholic news: Pope's speech distorted, catechumen, dissident bloggers arrested

    Archive 2009-09-01

  • This was my second year attending, but last year I was a catechumen.

    Wyoming Youth Retreat 2007

Comments

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  • if mispronounced, fun to say. catachoomin! cata-cumin!

    November 17, 2011