catholicity • universal
Ecclesiastical Dictionary: Containing, in Concise Form, Information upon Ecclesiastical, Biblical, Archæological, and Historical Subjects
Catholic.—The meaning of the word “Catholic” is of Greek origin, signifying throughout the whole, universal, and is used in this sense in various connections by both Greek and Latin pagan writers. The word is found in the same general sense in the earliest Christian writers. The Roman Catholic Church
The Thiselton Companion to Christian Theology
CatholicityThis word derives from Greek katholikos, which means general or universal. In theology it is applied to the universal church in contrast to local churches or congregations. Ignatius, for example, wrote, “Whenever the bishop (episkopos) appears this is the congregation (plēthos); where Jesus
Dictionary of Theological Terms
CatholicCatholic means “general, universal.” It was used as early as the second century as a word to describe the orthodox Christian church. Subsequent to the Reformation,* Rome claimed the title exclusively. The term Roman Catholic then arose out of a controversy between the Roman and Anglican churches,
Evangelical Dictionary of Theology
Catholic. Transliterating the Greek katholikos, meaning “throughout the whole” or “general,” this word has been used variously. In the earlier patristic period it denoted universal, as in the first occurrence in a Christian setting—“Wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the catholic church” (Ign. Smyrn.
Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity
CATHOLIC. Noun and adjective meaning “universal.” When referred to the church, the term specifies one of its most prestigious characteristics, that it is not national or local by foundation, but open to all. Believers in Christ who acknowledge the bishop of *Rome as the supreme authority are called Catholic.