An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Glossary of Terms

Emery, Julia Chester

(Sept. 26, 1846-Jan. 9, 1922). Leader of women's ministry. She came to New York in 1874 to edit The Young Christian Soldier. In 1876 she was appointed secretary of the Woman's Auxiliary to the Board of Missions (WA). Emery held that position for the next forty years, resigning in 1916. She directed the expansion of […]

Emery, Margaret Theresa

(Aug. 3, 1849-July 20, 1925). She worked in the national office of the Woman's Auxiliary of the Episcopal Church from 1876 until 1919. She edited The Young Christian Soldier and directed the Auxiliary's program to provide supplies for foreign and domestic missionaries in “mission boxes” provided by local chapters. Julia Chester Emery, Mary Abbot Emery, […]

Emery, Mary Abbot

(Mrs. Alvi Tabor Twing) (Feb. 23, 1843-Oct. 14, 1901). The oldest daughter of Charles and Susan Hilton Emery, she was appointed secretary of the newly formed Woman's Auxiliary to the Board of Missions in 1871. She was chiefly responsible for the early development of that organization. Though she resigned as secretary in 1876 to marry […]

Emery, Susan Lavinia

(Sept. 26, 1846-Mar. 1, 1914). She wrote children's stories and edited The Young Christian Soldier, the Episcopal Church's missionary magazine for children, from 1871 until 1875. Julia Chester Emery, Margaret Theresa Emery, and Mary Abbot Emery were her sisters.

Emma of Hawaii

( See Kamehameha and Emma, King and Queen of Hawaii.)


A Hebrew word that means “God is with us.” It is mentioned in Is 7:14 as a sign from the Lord and the name of a child to be born. In the NT it is used only in Matthew at the beginning of his gospel as a way of understanding the significance of Jesus. Many […]

Emmanuel Movement

The Rev. Dr. Elwood Worcester became the rector of Emmanuel Church, Boston, in 1904, and served there until his retirement in 1929. While at Emmanuel Church he worked on combining religion and science, resulting in a healing ministry which lasted until his retirement. The movement began when Worcester developed a program for the treatment of […]

Empie, Adam

(Sept. 5, 1785-Nov. 6, 1860). College president and rector. He was born in Schenectady, New York. Empie was educated at Union College, Schenectady, and decided to enter the ordained ministry of the Episcopal Church. He was ordained deacon on July 30, 1809, and began his ministry as assistant at St. George's Church, Hempstead, Long Island. […]

English Hymnal, The

A British hymnal published in 1906 under the leadership of Percy Dearmer as general editor and Ralph Vaughan Williams as musical editor. A second edition including minor but important changes was published in 1933, and a more comprehensive revision, The New English Hymnal, was published in 1986. The first two editions had a strong influence […]

Enlightenment, The

An intellectual and cultural development which emphasized the ability of human reason to grasp the ultimate meaning of life and creation in terms of self-evident truths. It was widespread in western Europe during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The Enlightenment upheld the autonomy of human reason and reason's adequacy to grasp and shape the world […]


(c. 1813-June 11, 1902). American Indian priest and missionary. He was born on the north shore of Rice Lake, Ontario, Canada, and was a member of the Chippewa (Ojibwe) Nation. His name means “one-who-stands-before-his-people.” After he was baptized by a Methodist preacher he took the name John Johnson. Some time before 1850 he was given […]

Enriching Our Worship

A collection of supplemental liturgical materials prepared by the Standing Liturgical Commission (1997) and published by Church Publishing Incorporated. It includes resources and forms for Morning and Evening Prayer, Order of Worship for the Evening, the Great Litany, and the Holy Eucharist. The canticles and prayers represent the recovery of ancient biblical and patristic images, […]

Entrance Rite

The liturgical gathering of the people as the worshiping community at the beginning of the eucharist. The entrance rite prepares the congregation for the liturgy of the word. Until the fourth or fifth centuries, the eucharistic liturgy typically began with the celebrant's salutation and the first reading. As Christian worship became more formalized, entrance rites […]


(Ephraem) of Edessa (d. June 373). Early church theologian. He was born at or near Nisibis, in modern-day Turkey. Ephrem lived at Nisibis until 363, when he moved to Edessa. He lived there as an anchorite or hermit. He is remembered for his exegetical, theological, and especially poetic writings. Ephrem has been called the “Lyre […]


The invocation of the active presence of the Holy Spirit in the eucharistic prayer so that the bread and wine may become the body and blood of Christ. The presider at the eucharist may extend his or her hands over the gifts at the epiclesis. The term is based on the Greek word that means […]

Epiphany Season

A season of four to nine weeks, from the Feast of the Epiphany (Jan. 6) through the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. The length of the season varies according to the date of Easter. The gospel stories of this season describe various events that manifest the divinity of Jesus. The coming of the Magi is celebrated […]

Epiphany, The

The manifestation of Christ to the peoples of the earth. The winter solstice was kept on Jan. 6 at some places during the first centuries of the Christian Era. In opposition to pagan festivals, Christians chose this day to celebrate the various manifestations, or "epiphanies," of Jesus' divinity. These showings of his divinity included his […]


1) Concerning the Episcopal Church. Used in this sense, the adjective “Episcopal” is always capitalized. For example, “The Episcopal liturgy will be used at the wedding.” Similarly, “The Episcopal priest attended the ecumenical gathering.” 2) Concerning a bishop or bishops. Used in this sense, the adjective “episcopal” is not always capitalized. For example, an episcopal […]

Episcopal Academy of Connecticut

This school was founded at Cheshire, Connecticut, in 1794 to “serve the double purpose of a preparatory school and a university.” Sometimes it was referred to as “Seabury University.” The academy opened in 1796 and admitted boys and girls until 1836, when it became a boys' school. It never developed into a college. It closed […]

Episcopal Academy, Merion, Pennsylvania, The

The vestry of Christ Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, founded The Episcopal Academy on Jan. 1, 1785. It opened on Apr. 4, 1785. The president of the board of trustees was the rector of Christ Church, the Rev. William White. Among the founders were Robert Morris and Francis Hopkinson, signers of the Declaration of Independence, Edwin […]

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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.