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christian thinkers who defended and explained christian beliefs


the denial that God exists


mean "overseers"; ordained church leaders who are successors of the Apostles and have received the fullness of the Sacrament


the church's complete list of sacred books of the Bible


unbaptized persons preparing for membership in the church. a person becomes a catechumen after celebrating the Rite of Acceptance into the order of catechumens


third degree of the Sacrament of Holy Orders; the man is ordained to assist the bishop and priests in a variety of ways; in the early church someone appointed to serve those who were poor or otherwise needy in the community

Edict of Milan

Declaration allowing religious freedom in the Roman Empire


a belief, attitude, or teaching that is contrary to revealed truth and to the Church's doctrine of faith


someone baptized a christian who obstinately holds a position on an article of faith that conflicts with officially defined church teachings


the truth that the second Person of the Blessed Trinity while remaining God, assumed a human nature and became man


baptized catholics who share in Jesus' mission and continue his work on earth but are not ordained


persons who witness to the truth of the faith by enduring death to be faithful to Christ


a doctrine, belief, attitude or teaching that is consistent with revealed truth and with the Churchs doctrine of faith


another name for elders or priests; in the early church, presbyters were closely associated with the bishop in the exercising of leadership in some faith communities


effective signs of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the church by which we share in divine life through the work of the Holy Spirit


the living and authentic transmission of the teachings of Jesus in the Church


roman governor who wrote the emperor seeking guidance about what to do with christians


first Christian Roman emperor


early christian who kept a diary in prison and died for the faith

Herod Agrippa I

ruler of Palestine who persecuted Christian in Jerusalem


first emperor to persecute christians

deacon laurence

roman deacon who died while being burned over hot coals


emperor who began diocese and the "great persecution" of Christians

Justin Martyr

apologist who wrote key elements of early faith

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