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(20,376 words)

Author(s): Dondelinger, Patrick | Auffarth, Christoph | Braulik, Georg | Reif, Stefan C. | Johnson, Luke T. | Et al.
[German Version] I. Terminology The German word Gottesdienst (“worship,” lit. “service of God”) is attested since the 13th/14th century as a German translation of Latin cultus (Cult/Worship). It came into common use in the 16th century, especially in Luther’s works. Starting with an ethical understanding of the word, Luther himself used it as a technical term for the common celebration of the Word of God, as it evolved from the evangelical reform of the Catholic sacrifice (IV) of the mass. For centuries the term Gottesdienst…

Name Day

(339 words)

Author(s): Schlemmer, Karl
[German Version] The name has special significance for human beings, whether or not this means “pre-signification” in the sense of predestiny. In any event, parents generally pay great attention to the choice of their children's names. Therefore, in some predominantly Catholic regions the name day is celebrated rather than the birthday. In early Christianity men and women retained their original names even after baptism. A formal demand for parents to name their children after saints is found c. 288 in John Chrysostom. This may have led in the E…


(5,925 words)

Author(s): Kraus, Georg | Kinzig, Wolfram | Schlemmer, Karl | Plank, Peter | Schwier, Helmut | Et al.
[German Version] I. Terminology – II. Church History – III. Liturgy – IV. Customs and Traditions – V. Homiletics and Education – VI. Art History I. Terminology Easter (cf. Ger. Ostern) is the English word for the feast of Jesus Christ's resurrection (II). The name in other Germanic and Romance languages derives instead from Gk πάσχα/ páscha (Aram. פַּסְחָא/ pascha' or פִּסְחָא/ pischa' for Heb. פֶּסַח/ pesah. [from פסח/ psh., “limp/go past”, etymology not entirely clear]; Lat. as pascha or passa), for example, Påske (Danish and Norwegian), Pasen (Dutch), Påsk (Swedish), Pasqua (Italian), Pascua (Spanish), Pâques (French) – evidence that the Christian observance of Easter developed out of the Old Testament/Jewish Passover festival (Feasts and festivals: II, III; see II below). Various etymologies have been proposed for the word Easter. In the 8th century, the Venerable Bede associated Easter with Eostra, the Anglo-Saxon goddess of the dawn (OHG: …


(309 words)

Author(s): Schlemmer, Karl
[English Version] . Der Name hat ein bes. Gewicht für den Menschen. Ob damit »Vorbedeutung« im Sinne schicksalhafter Bestimmung gemeint ist, muß dahingestellt bleiben. Jedenfalls wählen Eltern i.allg. die Namen ihrer Kinder mit Bedacht aus. Von daher ist es u.a. in manchen kath. geprägten Gegenden üblich, anstatt des Geburtstages den N. zu feiern. In der Frühzeit des Christentums behielten Männer und Frauen ihren urspr. Namen auch nach der Taufe bei. Eine förmliche Aufforderung an die Eltern, ihre Kinder nach Heiligen zu benennen, findet sich um 288 bei Johannes Chrysostomus. Dies dürfte zu der Entwicklung in der Ostkirche geführt haben, Kindern statt oder neben dem bürgerlichen Namen den eines Heiligen zum Vorbild, zur Mahnung und zum Schutz zu geben (belegt ab der Wende zum 5.Jh.). Ein Zusammenhang von Taufe…