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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce ecclesiastic (audio)

Dictionary definition of ecclesiastic

A person who holds a position or is involved in the religious clergy or the hierarchical structure of a church or religious organization.
"The local ecclesiastic played a crucial role in uniting the community during the crisis."

Detailed meaning of ecclesiastic

It specifically pertains to individuals who are ordained or authorized to perform religious rites, ceremonies, and functions within a specific faith or denomination. Ecclesiastics often include priests, ministers, pastors, bishops, and other religious leaders who play vital roles in guiding and administering the spiritual affairs of their respective religious communities. They may be responsible for conducting religious services, delivering sermons or teachings, providing pastoral care and counseling, and overseeing the overall spiritual welfare of their congregations. Ecclesiastics typically possess extensive knowledge of religious doctrines, traditions, rituals, and scriptures, and they serve as spiritual guides, intermediaries, and representatives of their faith communities.

Example sentences containing ecclesiastic

1. The medieval painting depicted an ecclesiastic deep in prayer.
2. She decided to pursue her calling and become an ecclesiastic, dedicating her life to serving the church.
3. The ancient bookshelf contained numerous writings by ecclesiastics from centuries past.
4. The ecclesiastic’s passionate sermon was deeply moving, and many members of the congregation were brought to tears.
5. In the Middle Ages, the influence of ecclesiastics in political matters was significant.
6. The king sought the advice of an esteemed ecclesiastic before making the final decision on the new law.

History and etymology of ecclesiastic

The noun 'ecclesiastic' has its etymological roots in the Greek language. It is derived from the Greek word 'ekklēsiastikos,' which pertains to matters of the church or the assembly of the faithful. The term 'ekklēsiastikos' is derived from 'ekklēsia,' meaning 'assembly' or 'church,' and 'ekklētos,' which signifies 'called out' or 'chosen.' Therefore, the etymology of 'ecclesiastic' conveys the idea of a person who holds a position or is involved in the religious clergy or the hierarchical structure of a church or religious organization. The word 'ecclesiastic' has been historically used to refer to individuals within the church, such as priests, ministers, or clergy members, emphasizing their roles in the ecclesiastical, or church-related, aspects of religious life and organization.

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Further usage examples of ecclesiastic

1. The gathering was a mix of laypeople and ecclesiastics who were discussing the current issues faced by the church.
2. The small village was shaken when their beloved ecclesiastic passed away after serving them for decades.
3. The attire of an ecclesiastic in the Orthodox Church is often elaborate and ornate.
4. As an ecclesiastic, he took a vow of poverty and dedicated his life to helping the needy.
5. The museum hosted an exhibition on the lives and works of notable ecclesiastics through history.
6. The ecclesiastic delivered a moving sermon at the Sunday service.
7. He sought counsel from the ecclesiastic during his spiritual crisis.
8. The ecclesiastic presided over the wedding ceremony.
9. She aspired to become an ecclesiastic to serve her faith.
10. The ecclesiastic's teachings were deeply rooted in tradition.
11. The ecclesiastic's role in the church was highly respected.
12. He dedicated his life to the ecclesiastic calling.
13. The ecclesiastic provided solace to those in need.
14. The ecclesiastic led the congregation in prayer.
15. Her family had a long history of ecclesiastic service.
16. The ecclesiastic council convened to discuss church matters.
17. The ecclesiastic hierarchy ensured the church's organization.
18. The ecclesiastic community welcomed newcomers with open arms.
19. The ecclesiastic code of conduct emphasized humility.
20. The ecclesiastic traditions were passed down through generations.



clergyman, layperson, secularist, non-cleric


GRE 5 (Graduate Record Examination), Community and Society, Sacred and Profane

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