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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Originally meant advice or counsel (Greek parainein, to advise). As a form of biblical composition, it is popular preaching or exhortation, of which the epistle of St. James is a classic example. It is exemplified in the moralizing parts of the Old Testament and is found in such Apostolic Fathers as Clement I and the Shepherd of Hermas. Besides James, it is frequently used by St. Paul, e.g., in his letters to the Galatians and Ephesians.