An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Priesthood of All Believers

Fundamental doctrine which affirms that all baptized Christians share the eternal priesthood of Jesus. Christ's high priesthood is unique and his atoning sacrifice was offered once for all. The royal priesthood of the people of God consists in the offering of ourselves repeatedly in daily obedience in the world (1 Pt 2:5; Rom 12:1). The redemptive work of Christ makes it possible for the people of God to offer their priestly sacrifice of obedient living (Rv 1:6, 5:10). The recovery of this doctrine at the Reformation led to the recovering of the ministry of the laity. The whole church is described by the Catechism as “a royal priesthood” (BCP, p. 854).

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.