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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ Before 1939 the ecumenical movement was always a clerical élite within the older Churches.
▪ The dictionary's articles cover a wide range of topics connected with the ecumenical movement.
▪ To say that church schools hinder the ecumenical movement is a nonsense.
▪ Before 1939 the ecumenical movement was always a clerical élite within the older Churches.
▪ Beforehand there will be a historical walk around the city, a street theatre show and an ecumenical service.
▪ He was already a member of ecumenical committees.
▪ None of the ecumenical character of Barr's approach remained.
▪ The conference is the world's largest annual ecumenical event.
▪ The latest addition to the modest skyline ... the ecumenical church.
▪ The publishers' introduction is somewhat ecumenical.
▪ This is the most significant single interfaith ecumenical project to take place in the United States.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Ecumenic \Ec`u*men"ic\, Ecumenical \Ec`u*men"ic*al\, a. [L. oecumenicus, Gr. ? (sc. ?) the inhabited world, fr. ? to inhabit, from o'i^kos house, dwelling. See Economy.] General; universal; in ecclesiastical usage, that which concerns the whole church; as, an ecumenical council.

Ecumenical Bishop, a title assumed by the popes.

Ecumenical council. See under Council.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

late 16c., "representing the entire (Christian) world," formed in English as an ecclesiastical word, from Late Latin oecumenicus "general, universal," from Greek oikoumenikos "from the whole world," from he oikoumene ge "the inhabited world (as known to the ancient Greeks); the Greeks and their neighbors considered as developed human society (as opposed to barbarian lands)," in later use "the Roman world" and in the Christian sense in ecclesiastical Greek, from oikoumenos, present passive participle of oikein "inhabit," from oikos "house, habitation" (see villa). Related: Ecumenic.


a. 1 (context ecclesiastical English) Pertaining to the universal church, representing the entire Christian world; interdenominational; sometimes by extension, interreligious. (from 16th c.) 2 general, universal, worldwide. (from 17th c.)

  1. adj. concerned with promoting unity among churches or religions; "ecumenical thinking"; "ecumenical activities"; "the ecumenical movement" [syn: ecumenic, oecumenic, oecumenical]

  2. of worldwide scope or applicability; "an issue of cosmopolitan import"; "the shrewdest political and ecumenical comment of our time"- Christopher Morley; "universal experience" [syn: cosmopolitan, oecumenical, general, universal, worldwide]


Usage examples of "ecumenical".

Iris was Catholic if lapsed, Harold is nothing that anyone knows of, but we are being ecumenical and eirenical in dark suits.

Our catalogued, ecumenical clearinghouse of knowledge was running at about double average gate.

Ayatollah Jebel Shammar this morning--you know, the chairman of Convocation of Ecumenical Leaders.

Suffragan Bishop of Walthamstow in the later 1850s and far ahead of his time in ecumenical matters, so it would seem.

The governing body of the Kingdom of Yahweh and His Saints and Their Apostles was an ecumenical theocracy.

A motion is before the Convocation of Ecumenical Leaders to demand the immediate removal from the Kingdom of Yahweh and His Saints and Their Apostles of all infidels other than those few necessary to maintain needed contact with the Confederation of Human Worlds.

The followers of the Fourteen Sages, whose Book was the Orange Catholic Bible, and whose views are expressed in the Commentaries and other literature produced by the Commission of Ecumenical Translators.

All the Army of the Lord forces are engaged in the mopping up, and the goddamn Ecumenical Council of Leaders is useless now anyway, so who'd miss them?

Brigadier Sturgeon, commander of 34th FIST, and a few members of his staff made planetfall to report to Confederation Ambassador Jayben Spears and the leadership of Kingdom's ruling Ecumenical Council.

He leaves tomorrow morning for New York for the final meeting of the ecumenical council, and then he'll be on to Israel and the Vatican.

The ecumenical council meets monthly, and, after the business is done, we gossip terribly.

Moslems would always be welcome here, but an ecumenical council headed by the Episcopal archbishop planned to convert it into a church that would serve all the congregations on a rotating basis.

Here in Videssos the city, that power rests only in the hands of the most holy ecumenical patriarch Agathios.

He wondered what sort of rumors the ecumenical patriarch had heard.

He could depose the ecumenical patriarch and have a synod choose a successor from among three candidates he had picked himself.