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Lay Offices
(605 words)

[German Version]

In Catholic theology the term “office” is reserved primarily for the office of the ordained, that is, the office of the bishop, the priest, and the deacon (Office VI, 3). In addition, there are traditional ecclesiastical duties, especially in the realms of administration and diakonia, that are performed voluntarily on a full or part-time basis, and that are understood in the broader sense of the word “office.” Officially they are called “services” or “ministries” as distinct from offices.

Although biblically the term “laity” refers to all believers in Chris…

Cite this page
Neuner, Peter, “Lay Offices”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 17 January 2021 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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