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a term referring to a universal church, e.g. the Roman Catholic Church, in place of the more generic term CHURCH. See also CHURCH-SECT TYPOLOGY.



the most common name for the popular assembly in ancient Greece. In the Athens of Pericles (mid-fifth century B.C.) and in other democratic poleis, or city-states, the ecclesia was the highest governmental body. It elected officials and exercised legislative, executive, and judicial power. In oligarchic poleis the authority of the ecclesia was limited by other governmental bodies, such as councils and collegia.

In many poleis, the popular assembly was given a special name; the term apella was used in Sparta, the term agora in Delphi and the cities of Thessaly, and the term alia in Argos, Epidaurus, Gela, and Acragas (present-day Agrigento). Writers of late antiquity used the word “ecclesia” to refer to the place where a popular assembly was held.

In Christian writings, “ecclesia” may mean either the community of believers or the church as a whole.

References in periodicals archive ?
Global Sisters Report: Why was the Ecclesia of Women in Asia established?
Peter is associate director of Ecclesia, is a classical accompanist and organ recitalist, has a number of theatrical credits to his name both as a pit musician and MD and is an accomplished soloist.
Their prison sentences ranged from three to five years, according to Radio Ecclesia.
The deal was announced in conjunction with an exclusive trading agreement with GrECo plus two other independent insurance brokers, SIACI Saint Honore (S2H) and Ecclesia Gruppe.
Billingham Crusaders won 4-0 at home to Ecclesia Sheffield and remain the only league team left in the competition.
The series highlight thus far was the PlayStation and Xbox Live Arcade smash Symphony of the Night, however, Order of Ecclesia is certainly as good as that title, and marks a return to form for the Konami franchise.
Planning officials are recommending planning permission is granted despite objections from the Coventry Christadelphian Ecclesia about traffic problems.
Anti-Papal Prejudice is a fascinating historical survey with informative chapters devoted to "Bad Popes"; "The Campaign Against Pius IX"; "Some Other Modern Slanders and Slanderers"; "The Pope Who was a Freemason"; Why Pope Clement XII Condemned Freemasonry"; "On Some Medieval Fables"; "Hildebrand and Matilda of Tuscany"; "Papal Forgeries"; "The Forgeries of Cardinal Vaughan"; "The Popes and the Bible"; "The Extermination of Heretics"; "Groveling to the Pope"; "Papal Rapacity and the Ecclesia Anglicana"; "The Popes in Protestant Tradition"; "Darkening the Shadows"; and "What Prejudice Ignores".
Andrew Pollard Senior from Tipperary was awarded the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice by Pope Benedict XVI at a ceremony last week.
O'Connell uses ``Latin-English Booklet Missal,'' published in 1991 by the Coalition in Support of Ecclesia Dei.
However, Radio Ecclesia continued to broadcast these programs.
In his Ecclesia in Europa (2003), John Paul II warned that Europe was losing its Christian memory and heritage: 'Many Europeans give the impression of living without spiritual roots and somewhat like heirs who have squandered a patrimony entrusted to them by history'.