February's Solidarity Campaign has netted 716 gifts so far (goal was 700). Let's set a record by the 28th!
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

FRIAR

A brother. Originally a form of address in general use among the Christian faithful, as is clear from the frequent references to "brother" and "brethren" in the New Testament writings. Later the term came to be used more exclusively by members of religious orders, and finally, since the thirteenth century, it referred to those who belonged to one of the mendicant orders, mainly the Franciscans and Dominicans, although extended to others in the monastic tradition. Strictly speaking, however, a friar differs from a monk in that his ministry engages him in work outside the monastery, whereas traditionally the prayer and labors of a monk are identified within the monastery to which he belongs. (Etym. Old French frère, freire, brother; Latin frater, brother.)

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

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

Recent Catholic Commentary

The Complexities of Persecution 4 hours ago
Ukraine: A great lesson in thinking like a Catholic. 5 hours ago
Notre Dame has lost two contrasting giants 6 hours ago
Two good publishers, six new books for Lent February 26
Another awkward 'clarification' from the Vatican February 25

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis to address Congress in joint session in September CWN - February 5