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Kiss of Peace
(358 words)

Paul’s instruction to “greet one another with a holy kiss” (Rom. 16:16; 1 Cor. 16:20; 2 Cor. 13:12; see also 1 Pet. 5:14) may have been based on a practice in Greco-Roman clubs, in which new members were received with a kiss. A kiss of greeting concluded Christian initiation and served as the welcome to the Eucharist in Justin Martyr’s (d. ca. 165) 1 Apol. 65 and the Apostolic Tradition, attributed to Hippolytus (d. ca. 236).

The kiss of peace came to conclude the synaxis, or liturgy of the Word (Worship). Then, in the light of Jesus’ command to be reconciled with one’s broth…

Cite this page
Senn, Frank C., “Kiss of Peace”, in: Encyclopedia of Christianity Online. Consulted online on 26 January 2022 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2211-2685_eco_K79>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004169678, 20080512

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