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

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GIFT

As a title to ownership in scholastic philosophy, the voluntary transfer of something to another person. Gift includes two elements: alienation or giving up of the first owner's right, and acceptance of the beginning of the new owner's right. Both of these take place together and with a view to one another. The property is alienated only on condition that it can be accepted by the person to whom it is offered, so that if a gift is refused the property is not alienated and others have no claim on it.

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

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