An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Glossary of Terms

Golden Number

An indication of the date of the full moon which follows the spring equinox (Mar. 21) in a nineteen-year cycle, used in finding the date of Easter Day. The Golden […]

Golden Rule

” Maxim based on Jesus' teaching in the Sermon on the Mount, Mt 7:12 (NRSV), “In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this […]

Golden Sequence, The

” The sequence hymn for the Day of Pentecost, Veni Sancte Spiritus (Hymns 226-227), is sometimes called the Golden Sequence. The BCP rubrics direct that the Veni Sancte Spiritus or […]

Good Friday

The Friday before Easter Day, on which the church commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus. It is a day of fasting and special acts of discipline and self-denial. In the early […]

Good News Bible (The Bible in Today’s English Version)

An English translation of the Bible, published by the American Bible Society. The NT translation was published in 1966, and the OT translation was published in 1976. This Bible translation […]

Goodwin, William Archer Rutherfoord

(June 18, 1869-Sept. 7, 1939). Historian and priest. He was born in Richmond, Virginia. Goodwin received his B.A. and M.A. from Roanoke College in 1889. In 1890 he studied at […]

Gordon, Patrick

(d. July 1702). One of the first missionaries to colonial America. Gordon was the first missionary sent by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel (SPG) to the province […]

Gordon, Quinland Reeves

(June 6, 1925-Jan. 3, 1990). African American theological educator. He was born in Greenwich, Connecticut. He graduated from Wilberforce University in 1945 and from the Episcopal Theological School in 1947. […]

Gordon, William Jones, Jr.

(May 6, 1918-Jan. 4, 1994). Bishop of Alaska. He was born in Spray, North Carolina. Gordon received his B.A. in 1940 from the University of North Carolina and his B.D. […]

Gore, Charles

(Jan. 22, 1853-Jan. 17, 1932). Theologian and bishop. He was a prolific writer, producing during his lifetime major studies in theology which had an influence far beyond the Church of […]


The English word “gospel” (from Anglo-Saxon godspel) or “good news” translates the Greek euangelion. Originally in Christian usage it meant the good news of God's saving act in Jesus Christ, […]

Gospel Acclamation

Before and after a gospel reading, the people acclaim Christ present in the sacred word. The acclamations of the Episcopal Church are translations of the Latin Gloria tibi, Domine and […]

Gospel Advocate, The

A monthly periodical published at Newburyport, Massachusetts, beginning with the issue of Jan. 1821. It was a continuation of the Churchman's Repository for the Eastern Diocese. In Jan. 1822, it […]

Gospel Book

From ancient times the gospel pericopes have been collected in a large book with an ornate cover, often illustrated and adorned with icons and jewels. This practice was recovered with […]

Gospel Messenger

This weekly periodical began publication on Jan. 20, 1827, at Auburn, New York. In 1835 it was moved to Utica, New York. The last issue was published in Nov. 1872.

Gospel Messenger and Southern Episcopal Register

This periodical was published at Charleston, South Carolina. The initial issue was dated Jan. 1824, and it continued until 1853. It was for years the most influential publication of the […]

Gospel Procession

In many places it is customary to have a gospel procession to the place of reading. A procession may include several persons-the reader, two candle bearers, a thurifer, and, if […]

Gospel Side

” An archaic term referring to the left side of the altar, and that side of the church building, as viewed by the congregation from the nave. The gospel was […]

Gospeler (or Gospeller)

The term names a liturgical function, referring to a member of the clergy who reads the gospel. A deacon normally reads the gospel when present at the eucharist. See Deacon.

Gothic Architecture

The style of architecture prevalent in Europe from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries. The chief distinguishing feature is the pointed arch. A revival of gothic architecture began in England […]

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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.