Anglican Dictionary: H

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Heresy

The formal and intentional denial or contradiction of God’s word, or any established theological doctrine of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church, by one of its leaders or members.

High Church

One of three popular designation for styles of worship in an Anglican Church. “High Church” worship emphasizes theological or liturgical formality. Parts or all of a “high” service are often sung or chanted rather than reading or speaking them. Services often include several vested assistants, incense and sanctus bells.

SEE ALSO: Low Church, Broad Church.

Holy Orders

A way of referring to ordination among Roman Catholics, Anglicans, and a few others: an ordained person is spoken of as “being in holy orders”–meaning that the person has made priestly vows and has been admitted by a bishop into one of the several levels of ordination.

Holy Week

The week preceding Easter — the last week in Lent. Holy Week is the most important period of the church year, observed with many special services, beginning with Palm Sunday and concluding on Holy Saturday. Holy Week includes Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.

Homily

A short sermon often on a single topic of devotion or morality. The difference between a sermon and a homily is primarily the length. Some wags are known to refer to homilies as “sermonettes.”

Host

The consecrated “bread” part of the Holy Communion. In most Anglican churches a wafer is used as the host, but an increasing number of churches are using actual baked bread. The wafer the priest breaks at the fraction is called a “priest’s host.”

Hymn

From the Greek word, hymnos, meaning “song of praise.” A hymn is a poem or other metrical composition adapted for singing in a church service. Hymns have only been allowed in the Anglican Church since 1820.

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