An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

A - Z Glossary

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | V | W | Y | Z


" Priests and deacons ordained to serve in a particular location which is "small, isolated, remote, or distinct in respect of ethnic composition, language, or culture." These locations cannot otherwise be provided sufficiently with the sacraments and pastoral ministrations of the Episcopal Church... Read More »

In the monastic traditions of the western church, the appointed times for prayer throughout the day. Benedict (c. 480-c. 547) set the basis for this pattern of daily prayer in his Rule for Monasteries. The seven "hours" are: matins and lauds (usually counted as a single hour), in the middle of the... Read More »

Clergy serving under the jurisdiction of the ecclesiastical authority of a diocese (typically the diocesan bishop) are canonically resident in that diocese. Clergy may move from jurisdiction to jurisdiction by presenting Letters Dimissory, a testimonial by the ecclesiastical authority of the former... Read More »

Pertaining to or belonging to Cambridge, England. It is a colloquial abbreviation of Cantabrigian, which comes from the Latin Cantabrigiensis. Usages include reference to degrees and diplomas conferred by the University of Cambridge. It usually follows nouns in titles, such as M.A. Cantab.

The Latin incipit or opening phrase for Ps 98 which in earlier Prayer Books began "O sing unto the Lord a new song." Objection was raised to use in the 1549 Prayer Book of the "Gospel canticles" (Benedictus, Magnificat, and Nunc dimittis) by some who believed that these songs of Zechariah, Mary,... Read More »

See Song of Moses, The.

The city in southeastern England that became the ecclesiastical center for England and, eventually, the Anglican Communion. The Benedictine monk Augustine founded the church in Canterbury on his mission from Rome in 597. From there Christianity spread throughout England. Canterbury has had a... Read More »

" A four-cornered cloth cap that is sometimes worn by Anglican clergy. It is soft, flat, and typically black in color. The Canterbury cap reflects a style of academic headgear that developed during the later middle ages. It served to keep the head warm in drafty lecture halls and churches. It is... Read More »

This school was established in 1946 and closed in 1951. It was begun with the gift of the buildings and campus of Central Normal College, which was founded on Sept. 5, 1876. It was at Danville, Indiana.

This agreed statement on Ministry and Ordination was finalized by the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC) at Canterbury in 1973. It was eventually included within the ARCIC Final Report (1982). It expressed agreement upon such matters as the origins of sacramental ordination,... Read More »

A non-metrical song used in liturgical worship. Canticles are drawn from biblical texts other than the Psalter. The term is derived from the Latin canticulum, a "little song." In practice, canticles are sung or said in worship. The BCP provides contemporary and traditional language canticles.... Read More »

A singer who sets the pitch and leads the liturgical singing of psalms, canticles, anthems, and other sung texts. Cantors often lead unaccompanied singing. In responsorial recitation of the Psalter, the cantor sings the verses of the psalm and the congregation sings a refrain after each verse or... Read More »

The term is from Latin meaning "place of the cantor." Traditionally, the cantor sat on the north side of the cathedral. In antiphonal singing, the term cantoris indicates those who sit on the cantoral or cantor's side of the choir of a church or cathedral. The opposite side is known as "decani... Read More »

A female cantor. See Cantor.

See Every Member Canvass.

See Liberia, Diocese of.

Three important theologians of the Patristic Era. Basil the Great of Caesarea (330-379), his brother Gregory of Nyssa (c. 330-395), and their friend Gregory of Nazianzus (329-389) all came from Cappadocia, a Roman province in what is now Turkey. In their lives and literary works, the three friends... Read More »

" An influential rector, usually of a large parish.

For Thomas Aquinas (1224-1274), the cardinal virtues form the basis for moral growth and development in all persons, although for Christians they can only be understood and fully achieved through God's grace as given in the theological virtues. Initially stated in Book Four of Plato's... Read More »

(June 26, 1822-Apr. 4, 1844). Controversial figure in the Oxford Movement. He was born in the vicinity of London, England. When he was eight years old, his father moved the family to New York City. In 1839 he graduated from Columbia College. Carey was considered "the most brilliant student in the [... Read More »

This musical instrument of twenty-three or more cast bronze bells ranges from two to six octaves, usually set in chromatic order like the keys of a piano. Instruments with fewer bells are called chimes. Unlike bells used in peals, carillon bells are stationary. Only the clappers move. They are... Read More »

A person who plays a musical instrument known as a carillon.

The term carol finds its origin in the French carole, a round dance in which the singers provide their own music by singing a refrain after uniform stanzas sung by a soloist. English medieval carols are poetic works in a similar form. Carols appear in a pattern of uniform stanzas, each with a... Read More »

This unorganized grouping of seventeenth-century churchmen and scholars flourished during the reign of King Charles I (d. 1649) and derived its name from him. They furthered the theological precepts established in the sixteenth century by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer (1489-1556); John Jewel (1522-1571... Read More »

(Jan. 10, 1887-June 19, 1948). The first woman to be appointed to full professional rank in an Anglican seminary. She was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and raised in New York City. She received her B.A. from Bryn Mawr College in 1908, her M.A. in 1919, and her Ph.D. in 1924 from Columbia University... Read More »

(Nov. 28, 1909-Aug. 27, 1978). Theologian. He was born in London and educated at the London School of Economics and King's College, London. Casserley was ordained deacon on Sept. 24, 1933, and priest on Sept. 30, 1934, both by the Bishop of Southwark in England. He served various churches in... Read More »

A long, close-fitting garment with narrow sleeves worn by clergy and other ministers. Cassocks are typically black but also may be blue, gray, or red. Bishops may wear purple cassocks. It may be worn under a surplice. Historically, the cassock was the street garb of a person in clerical orders. It... Read More »

The study of cases or situations in light of moral goods, principles, duties, and consequences. Casuistry arises from conflicts of conscience where in a particular situation more than one course of action appears good or bad, right or wrong. Called "cases of conscience," casuistry sees moral... Read More »

(May 11, 1810-Dec. 17, 1870). Educator and writer. He was born in Yateley, Hampshire, England. On Aug. 16, 1828, Caswall left England for the United States. In Nov., 1830, he received his B.A. from Kenyon College. He was ordained deacon on June 12, 1831, and began his ministry in Portsmouth, Ohio.... Read More »

Temporary structure used to receive the coffin of a dead person, or to simulate the coffin when the body is not in the church. It was treated with the same respect that would be accorded to the body of the deceased. The term is from the Italian for scaffold. It is placed immediately outside the... Read More »

This term describes those forms of spirituality which advocate meditation "according to or with images." It emphasizes meditation on concrete symbols or biblical events using physical and spiritual senses. The Ignatian and Franciscan schools of spirituality are cataphatic. See Apophatic.

Systematic instruction and formation of adults for baptism, initiating them into the mysteries and life of Christian faith. This instruction is not merely informative but intended to form one's outlook on life, values, and identity as a Christian. The instruction takes place in the context of... Read More »

Outline for instruction in the Christian faith presented in a question and answer format. The Catechism appears in the BCP as "An Outline of the Faith" (pp. 845-862). Although the Catechism serves as a commentary on the creeds, it is not intended to be a complete statement of belief and practice.... Read More »

A teacher, lay or ordained, who provides instruction in the Christian faith. The BCP (pp 845-862) provides "An Outline of the Faith, commonly called the Catechism," as a point of departure for this process of instruction. A confirmed adult lay person may be licensed as a catechist by the bishop or... Read More »

An adult preparing for baptism who has been admitted to participation in the catechumenate.

An organized time of Christian formation and education in preparation for baptism. The catechumenate is a time for training in Christian understandings about God, human relationships, and the meaning of life. According to Hippolytus's Apostolic Tradition, a third-century document, adult... Read More »


Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.