URGENT! Only 3 days left! We must still match $2,430 to win a $25,400 Challenge Grant! Can you help?
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

EXCOMMUNICATION

An ecclesiastical censure by which one is more or less excluded from communion with the faithful. It is also called anathema, especially if it is inflicted with formal solemnities on persons notoriously obstinate to reconciliation. Some excommunicated persons are vitandi (to be avoided), others tolerati (tolerate). No one is vitandus unless that person has been publicly excommunicated by name by the Holy See, and it is expressly stated that the person is "to be avoided," Anyone who lays violent hands on the Pope is automatically vitandus.

In general, the effects of excommunication affect the person's right to receive the sacraments, or Christian burial, until the individual repents and is reconciled with the Church. In order for an excommunication to take effect, the person must have been objectively guilty of the crime charged. (Etym. Latin ex-, from + communicare, to communicate: excommunicatio, exclusion from a community.)

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Matching Campaign
Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

Urgent! We need extra financial support between now and May 24th. 0 hours ago
What's wrong with these pictures? 4 hours ago
What can we learn from the dignity of military services? 5 hours ago
Was Lewis “basically Catholic”? May 21
Reading The Diary of a Country Priest: Scandal May 20

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days