Church \Church\ (ch[^u]rch), n. [OE. chirche, chireche, cherche,
Scot. kirk, from AS. circe, cyrice; akin to D. kerk, Icel.
kirkja, Sw. kyrka, Dan. kirke, G. kirche, OHG. chirihha; all
fr. Gr. kyriako`n the Lord's house, fr. kyriako`s concerning
a master or lord, fr. ky`rios master, lord, fr. ky^ros power,
might; akin to Skr. [,c][=u]ra hero, Zend. [,c]ura strong,
OIr. caur, cur, hero. Cf. Kirk
1. A building set apart for Christian worship.
2. A Jewish or heathen temple. [Obs.] --Acts xix. 37.
3. A formally organized body of Christian believers
worshiping together. "When they had ordained them elders
in every church." --Acts xiv. 23.
4. A body of Christian believers, holding the same creed,
observing the same rites, and acknowledging the same
ecclesiastical authority; a denomination; as, the Roman
Catholic church; the Presbyterian church.
5. The collective body of Christians.
6. Any body of worshipers; as, the Jewish church; the church
7. The aggregate of religious influences in a community;
ecclesiastical influence, authority, etc.; as, to array
the power of the church against some moral evil.
Remember that both church and state are properly the
rulers of the people, only because they are their
Note: Church is often used in composition to denote something
belonging or relating to the church; as, church
authority; church history; church member; church music,
. See under Apostolic
. See Broad Church
or Universal church
, the whole body of
believers in Christ throughout the world.
Church of England
, or English church
, the Episcopal
church established and endowed in England by law.
Church living, a benefice in an established church.
. See under Militant
(Zool.), the white owl. See Barn owl
, a tax levied on parishioners for the
maintenance of the church and its services.
. See under Session
. See under Triumphant
, work on, or in behalf of, a church; the work
of a particular church for the spread of religion.
, the church maintained by the civil
authority; a state church.