Find accurate definitions of over 5,000 Catholic terms and phrases (including abbreviations). Based on Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.
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A term of affectionate respect found in ecclesiastical documents and especially in the writings of the saints. Thus, the first Norm of Catholic Orthodoxy in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius reads: "We must put aside all judgment of our own, and keep the mind ever ready and prompt to obey in all things the true Spouse of Christ, our Lord, our holy Mother, the hierarchical Church."