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Council (ecclesiastical)
(3,217 words)

1. Survey

According to canon law (Ecclesiastical law), a council (from Latin concilium, “assembly”) is a gathering, generally of Catholic or Orthodox bishops, who discuss questions of the faith, trusting in the assistance of the Holy Spirit, and arrive at a decision that is binding on the whole church. The term synod (from Greek synodos, “assembly”) is sometimes used synonymously (similarly the adjectives conciliar and synodal).

The t…

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Quisinsky, Michael, “Council (ecclesiastical)”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 31 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_022625>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170206

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