The Church Handy Dictionary
Author: Anonymous
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The Father is God, John vi, 27; Gal. i. 1; 1 Thess. i. 1, &c.

The Son is God, John i. 1; xx. 28; Rom. ix. 5, &c.

The Holy Ghost is God. This, however, has to be proved by implication and analogy, as with Luke i. 35 compare Matt. i. 18; Acts v. 3, 4, with John iii. 6 compare 1 John v. 4; with 1 Cor. iii. 16 compare vi. 19, &c.

The unity of the Godhead is declared in many such passages as Deut. vi. 4; Gal. iii. 20; John x. 30, &c.

The Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, "took man's nature in the womb of the blessed Virgin, of her substance; so that the two whole and perfect natures, that is to say the Godhead and Manhood, were joined together in one Person, never to be divided, whereof is one Christ very God and very Man." (Art. ii. and Luke i.)

TRINITY SUNDAY. This is a festival of Western origin, and of comparatively recent date; the earliest formal notice of the festival is in England, under Becket, in 1162; though the collect dates from the 5th century.

TRIUMPHANT, The CHURCH. Those who have departed this life in God's faith and fear; the Church in Heaven. The Church on earth is called the Church Militant.

TUNICLE, see Vestments.

TYPE. An impression, image, or representation of some model which is termed the anti-type; thus the brazen serpent and the paschal lamb were types, of which our Lord was the anti-type.

UNITARIANS. Heretics who deny the Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the separate personality of the Holy Ghost. The name includes all Deists, whether the Arians of old, or the Socinians (which see) of later years.

The Arians were heretics named after Arius, whose doctrine was condemned at the Council of Nice, A.D. 325. He taught that there was a time when the Son of God was not, and that He was created by the Father. He called Him by the name of God, but denied that He was homoousios, "of one Substance" with the Father. The Arians seem to have held that the Holy Ghost also was a created Being. The Athanasian Creed, vv. 4-19 opposes the Arian heresy.

The Unitarians have in England 325 ministers, 355 chapels, and about 13 mission stations.

UNIVERSITY. (Lat., universitas, corporation.) A corporation of teachers and students instituted for the promotion of the higher education, and empowered to grant degrees in the various faculties of Divinity, Arts, Law. Medicine, &c.

England has five Universities, two ancient—Oxford and Cambridge; and three modern, viz., Durham, London, and the Victoria University, Manchester.

USE, see Sarum, Use of.

UTILITARIANISM. The name of the peculiar theory of Ethics, or of the ground of moral obligation, that adopts, as the criterion of right, the happiness of mankind; or, as Jeremy Bentham defined it, "the greatest happiness of the greatest number." It is opposed to the view that founds moral distinctions on the mere arbitrary will of God. The most eminent modern advocates of Utilitarianism are Hume, Bentham, Paley, James Mill, John Stuart Mill, Sir James Mackintosh, John Austin, Samuel Bailey, Herbert Spencer, and Bain.

VENIAL SIN, see Sin.

VENI CREATOR. An old Latin hymn ascribed by common tradition to St. Ambrose, but with no sufficient authority. It has been used with special reference to the gifts of Ordination since the 11th century. The first version in the Ordination Service was inserted in 1662, previous to that the second and longer form had been used.

VENITE, EXULTEMUS DOMINO. Ps. xcv. has been sung as the "Invitatory Psalm," opening the Service of Praise, from time immemorial. It is found in the Sarum Use. In the Eastern Church a condensed form of it is used.

VERGER. From the Latin Virga, a Rod. One who carries the mace before the Dean or Canons in a Cathedral, or conducts the congregation to their seats in church.

VERSICLES. The short ejaculatory prayers of our Service, generally taken from Holy Scripture.

VERSION, The AUTHORISED. The version of the Bible now in use in England. It was published in 1611, and authorised by King James I. It retains in many places the original translation of Tyndale, very little altered. A company of Divines and Scholars of the present day have been engaged in revising this version of the Old Testament. The result of their labours will probably be given to the public in 1885. (See Bible.)

VERSION, THE REVISED. The version of the New Testament put forth in 1881. It is a revision of that of 1611, made by a company of Scholars and Divines, and aims at being a more exact reproduction of the original. Although at present it has not been authorised for public use, yet it will be found by all to be a very useful commentary on the Authorised Version.

VESPERS, or EVENSONG. The Evening Service of the Church. For arrangement, &c., see Morning Prayer, but the various parts of the Service are given each under its own heading.

VESTMENTS. Generally, the garments worn by the clergy in the public services of the Church, but more particularly the special robes worn by some clergymen during the celebration of the Holy Communion.

Alb. A linen vestment longer than the surplice, and with tight sleeves. It is confined at the waist by a girdle, and, when employed in the Eucharist, it is often, though not necessarily, ornamented with patches of embroidery called apparels.

Amice. A kind of broad linen collar, fastened with strings.

Biretta. A square cap of black silk worn at processions and other out-door functions. It is simply the ordinary cap (beret) of civil life, and, like the cassock, is not strictly an ecclesiastical vesture at all. It is worn also in church during certain parts of the service by extreme Ritualists.

Cassock. A long coat buttoning over the breast and reaching to the feet, confined at the waist by a wide sash, called the cincture. It is worn immediately over the ordinary clothes of the minister, and is usually of black, though violet and scarlet are sometimes used.

Chasuble. An oval garment without sleeves, open at the sides, and having an aperture at the neck through which the priest passes his head. It is embroidered with a Y-Cross behind, and is considered the principal vestment of the priest. It varies in colour with the season.

Cope. A large semicircular cloak of silk or other material, fastening in front by a clasp or morse. At the back is a piece of embroidery in the shape of a shield, called the hood. It varies in colour with the season.

Cotta. A vestment of linen, shorter than the surplice, and not quite so full. It has short sleeves, and is frequently edged with lace.

Dalmatic and Tunicle. These differ very slightly in form, but the former is generally the more richly embroidered. It is the special dress of the Deacon at Holy Communion, and varies in colour with the season.

Girdle. A white cord, used to confine the Alb at the waist.

Hood. (See article, Hood.)

Maniple. A smaller Stole worn over the left arm.

Stole. A narrow strip of silk passed round the neck and hanging in front to about the knees. It varies in colour with the season.

Surplice. A linen vestment of various degrees of fulness, and with long wide sleeves. It is the garment usually worn by the clergy of the Church of England, although many of the above are ordered in the first Prayer Book of Edward VI.

The Eucharistic Vestments are the Amice, Alb, Girdle, Stole, Maniple, Tunicle, Dalmatic and Chasuble.

Besides these we have the Episcopal Vestments, called the chimere and the rochet.

Chimere. The upper robe worn by a Bishop, to which the lawn sleeves are generally attached. Until Queen Elizabeth's time it was of scarlet, but in her reign it was changed into black satin.

Rochet. A linen garment worn by Bishops under the chimere. The lawn sleeves now sewn on the chimere properly are part of the rochet, and formerly were much less full than now worn. (See Ornaments.)

VESTRY. A room attached to a church for the keeping of the vestments and sacred vessels. Meetings of parishioners, for the despatch of the official business of the parish are held in this room, whence they are called Vestries, or Vestry Meetings. It is not however essential to the validity of the meeting that it should be held in the Vestry of the church, indeed, by making application under an Act passed in 1850, meetings in the Vestry can be made illegal. Notice of the meeting must be affixed on or near the door of the Church three days previously. The Incumbent is ex-officio chairman of the meeting, and all persons rated to the relief of the poor are entitled to attend and vote.

VIA MEDIA. The middle road. This position is occupied in the Christian world by the Anglican Church. On the one side there is the Church of Rome; on the other, the ultra-Protestant Sects. The phrase is also used of any middle way between two extremes.

VIATICUM. A provision made for a journey. In the ancient Church both baptism and the Eucharist were called Viatica, because they are equally necessary for the safe passage of a man through this world to eternal life. More particularly, however, the term is used of the Eucharist given to persons in immediate danger of death. The 13th Canon of the Council of Nice ordains that none "be deprived of his perfect and most necessary viaticum when he departs out of this life."

VICAR, see Rector.

VICARS CHORAL. The assistants or deputies of the canons or prebendaries of cathedrals and collegiate churches, in the discharges of their duties. They are not necessarily all in Holy Orders; those who are so are now generally called "Minor Canons," (which see) and the others are "Lay-clerks."

VICAR GENERAL. An officer whose duties are much the same as those of the Chancellor of a Diocese (which see.)

VIGIL. The night or evening before certain holy-days of the Church. The word means a watching, and is derived from the custom of the primitive Christians, who used to spend the whole night previous to any great festival in watching and fasting. The Collect for those holy-days which have vigils is read at the Evening Service of the day before. Festivals occurring in seasons of joy as a rule have no vigil preceding them.

VIRGIN MARY, see Mary.

VISITATION. Once in three years a Bishop goes through his diocese, calling together the Clergy at different centres, and delivering to them a charge, (which see.) An Archdeacon does the same for his Archdeaconry once a year. It is at this latter visitation that Church-wardens are admitted to their office.


VOLUNTARY. A piece of Music played on the organ at the beginning and close of Divine Service. Formerly a Voluntary was played after the Psalms, sometimes after the Second Lesson. The name implies that its performance is optional. Lord Bacon approved of Voluntaries as giving time for meditation.

VULGAR TONGUE. The native language of a country. The phrase in the Baptismal Office stood formerly, "in the English tongue," but it was altered to embrace the case of foreigners.

VULGATE. The Latin translation of the Bible in common use. The first Vulgate of the Old Testament was translated, not from the original Hebrew, but from the Septuagint (which see), the author being unknown. The second Vulgate was by St. Jerome, and was made from the Hebrew. A mixture of these two was authorised for use by the Council of Trent. Other translations have since been made. It is the official and standard text in the Roman Church.

WAFERS. The bread used by the Romanists, by Lutheran Protestants, and by some Ritualists in our own Church, in the Eucharist.

WESLEYANS, see Methodists.

WHITSUN-DAY, or WHITSUNDAY. The derivation of the name is doubtful; some taking it from Whitsun, a corruption of Pentecosten, the old Anglo-Saxon name for the day; and some from White Sunday, because those who had been baptized on its eve wore white robes. This festival is the birthday of the Church, and has been observed, like Easter, from the first days of Christianity. (See Pentecost.)

WILL, FREE, see Free Will.

WORD, THE. A name given to our Lord in the opening of St. John's Gospel. The term was familiar to the Jews. (See Logos.)

WORSHIP. Besides meaning the supreme homage and devotion due to Almighty God, it is also used in the Bible and Prayer Book, to denote honour, respect, and reverence given to men. Thus it is used in Ps. lxxxiv.12; Luke xiv.10; and in 1 Chron. xxix.20, it seems to be used in both senses.

In the marriage service the husband promises to worship his wife, that is, to render her all due respect and honour. In like manner we call a Mayor or a Chancellor "Worshipful."

WORSHIP, PUBLIC, see Public Worship.

YEAR, THE ECCLESIASTICAL. The different seasons of the Church Year have each a separate notice. The Church begins her year with Advent, because, as Bishop Cosin says, "she does not number her days, or measure her seasons, so much by the motion of the sun, as by the course of our Saviour; beginning and counting her year with Him who, being the true Sun of Righteousness, began now to rise upon the world."


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