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  1. Abbess

    Female leader or superior of a religious community, usually a community following the Benedictine Rule. In community matters, the abbess has the same authority as an abbot, but without the abbot's sacramental function. The abbess is the spiritual, ...

    Glossary Term

  2. Abjuration

    A solemn renunciation of any belief, thing, or person to which one was previously loyal. This formal retraction of errors, made before witnesses, often concerned matters of apostasy, heresy, or schism. Prior to 1972, this solemn disavowal was required of ...

    Glossary Term

  3. Abbey

    A monastic community of religious persons along with the buildings of the community. The abbey consists of monks ruled by an abbot, or of nuns under an abbess. Abbeys are independent of the jurisdiction of the local bishop. The traditional plan of the ...

    Glossary Term

  4. Abbot

    Male leader or superior of a religious community. The title is derived from the Latin abbas or the Aramaic abba, "Father." The abbot functions as the "father" of the community. He is elected for life and receives authority from a ...

    Glossary Term

  5. Adams, William

    (July 3, 1813-Jan. 2, 1897). One of the founders of Nashotah House, he was born in Monaghan, Ireland, and received his B.A. in 1836 from Trinity College, Dublin. In 1838 he came to the United States and entered the General Theological Seminary, New York, ...

    Glossary Term

  6. Advent Wreath

    A circle of greenery, marked by four candles that represent the four Sundays of the season of Advent. An additional candle is lit as each new Sunday is celebrated in Advent. Advent wreaths are used both in churches and in homes for devotional purposes. ...

    Glossary Term

  7. Advent

    The first season of the church year, beginning with the fourth Sunday before Christmas and continuing through the day before Christmas. The name is derived from a Latin word for "coming." The season is a time of preparation and expectation for ...

    Glossary Term

  8. Absalom Jones Theological Institute

    A unit of the Interdenominational Theological Center, Atlanta, from 1972 to 1978. Named for the first African American priest in the Episcopal Church, it was to be a resource institution for Episcopal seminarians who wanted to serve African American ...

    Glossary Term

  9. Acclamation

    A salutation or greeting in the opening dialogue of the eucharistic liturgy arranged by versicle and response and varied according to the liturgical season. The memorial acclamation is a congregational response that may follow the institution narrative in ...

    Glossary Term

  10. Affusion

    A method of administering baptism by pouring water over the head of the candidate. Baptism may also be administered by immersion of the candidate. ...

    Glossary Term

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