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Appendix A. Glossary • 505


The dogma that

when the Blessed Virgin Mary’s

earthly life was finished, because

she was sinless, she was kept from

corruption and taken soul and body

into heavenly glory.


One who denies the

existence of God.


By his suffering

and death on the Cross, Jesus freed

us from our sins and brought about

our reconciliation with God

the Father.


See “Greed.”



The first Sacrament of

Initiation by which we are freed

from all sin and are endowed with

the gift of divine life, are made

members of the Church, and are

called to holiness and mission.


The last step

before being declared a saint. The

main steps in the canonization

process (determining eligibility

for sainthood) are as follows:

Servant of God (Venerable), Blessed,

and Saint.


The eight

Beatitudes form part of the teaching

given by Jesus during the Sermon

on the Mount, which set forth fun-

damental attitudes and virtues for

living as a faithful disciple.


See “Sacred Scripture.”


The highest of the three

degrees of Holy Orders; a bishop

is normally ordained to teach, to

sanctify, and to govern a diocese or

local church; a bishop is a successor

of the Apostles.


The use of the name

of God, of the Virgin Mary, and of

the saints in an offensive way.


Among the sacramen-

tals, blessings hold a major place.

There are blessings for persons,

meals, objects, places, and ceremo-

nial occasions such as graduations,

testimonial honors, welcomes, and

farewells. All blessings praise God

for his gifts. Most blessings invoke

the Holy Trinity along with the sign

of the Cross, sometimes with the

sprinkling of holy water.


A name

for the Holy Eucharist (see

“Eucharist, Sacrament of”). It is

also a title for the Church, with

Christ as her head, sometimes

referred to as the Mystical Body of

Christ. The Holy Spirit provides the

members with the gifts needed to

live as Christ’s Body.