An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Glossary of Terms


1) Holy place, usually the worship space of a church. Sanctuary may mean the area around the altar, especially in liturgical churches. It may be separated from the rest of […]

Sanctuary Lamp

A lamp or candle which burns near the reserved sacrament when the reservation is near the altar. See Reservation of the Sacrament.

Sanctus Bell

A bell rung by a server during the eucharist to emphasize and call attention to particular moments in the liturgy. The bell may be a small hand bell or set […]

Sanctus, The

From the Latin for “holy,” a hymn of adoration and praise which begins, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts.” It typically follows the preface in the eucharistic prayer (BCP, […]


Ancient ornamented coffin in the form of a chest and lid. The term is from Latin words that mean “flesh-eating.” This refers to the belief that a sarcophagus lined with […]

Satterlee, Henry Yates

(Jan. 11, 1843-Feb. 22, 1908). Bishop and founder of the Washington Cathedral. He was born in New York City. Satterlee received his B.A. from Columbia College in 1863 and studied […]

Savage, Thomas Staughton

(June 7, 1804-Dec. 29, 1880). The first medical missionary sent out by the Episcopal Church. He was born in Middletown (now Cromwell), Connecticut, and graduated from Yale in 1825. He […]

Sayre, John Nevin

(Feb. 4, 1884-Sept. 13, 1977). Founder of the Episcopal Peace Fellowship. He was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Sayre received his B.A. from Princeton in 1907 and his B.D. from Union […]


” See Oil, Holy.


A sleeveless garment that hangs from the shoulders to the ankles. The term is derived from the Latin for “shoulder-blades.” The scapular is a wide band of material, usually black, […]


See Tippet.

Schereschewsky, Samuel Isaac Joseph

(May 6, 1831-Oct. 15, 1906). Missionary bishop and translator. He was born in Tauroggen, Russian Lithuania, to Jewish parents. He became convinced that he should become a Christian and in […]


This word of Greek origin means a rip, tear, split, or division. In ecclesiastical terms, it is a formal and willful separation from the unity of the church. The term […]

Schola Cantorum

A school for church singers. The first Roman schola cantorum has been dated from the fourth century. It provided music for papal masses. The Roman schola cantorum was reorganized by […]


A movement or approach to theology in Christianity which developed during the middle ages. It flourished from the time of Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) until the beginning of the “modern” […]

School of Theology of the Diocese of Arkansas

See Arkansas Theological Chautauqua School.

School of Theology, University of the South

One of the recognized, accredited seminaries of the Episcopal Church. The first meeting of the trustees of the University of the South was held at Lookout Mountain, Tennessee, on July […]

Scott, Thomas Fielding

(Mar. 12, 1808-July 14, 1867). First Missionary Bishop of Oregon and Washington Territory. He was born in Iredell County, North Carolina. Scott graduated from Franklin College, now the University of […]


This word comes from the Latin for “writings” and refers to a collection of the most important documents in a given religious community. Many different religions have scriptures. The term […]

Scudder, Vida Dutton

(Dec. 15, 1861-Oct. 9, 1954). Educator and Christian Socialist. She was born in Madura, India, and was initially named Julia Davida. Her father was a Congregationalist missionary. She and her […]

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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.