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Elder (Christianity)

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Title: Elder (Christianity)  
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Subject: John Marden, Index of religious honorifics and titles, Assemblies of God USA, Metropolitan Mikhail of Asyut, Session (Presbyterianism)
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Elder (Christianity)

An elder in Christianity is a person who is valued for wisdom and holds a position of responsibility in a Christian group. In some Christian traditions (e.g., Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism, Methodism) an elder is a ordained person who usually serves a local church or churches and who has been ordained to a ministry of word, sacrament and order, filling the preaching and pastoral offices. In other Christian traditions (e.g., Presbyterianism, Baptists), an elder may be a lay person charged with serving as an administrator in a local church, or be ordained to such an office, also serving in the preaching (in this case referring to teaching done during church gatherings) and/or pastoral roles. Though there is technically a distinction between the idea of ordained elders and lay elders, often the two concepts are conflated in everyday conversation (for example, a lay elder in the Baptist tradition may still be referred to as being "clergy", especially in America). Particularly in reference to age and experience, elders exist throughout world cultures,[1][2] and the Christian sense of elder is partially related to this.

Elders in the Bible

Elders are mentioned in a number of New Testament passages. Individuals such as Titus to appoint others.[Tit 1:5] Paul spoke directly to the elders in Acts[Acts 20:17] and warned them to "be on guard for themselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made them overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood."[Acts 20:28]

Terminology

The Christian office of "elder" is drawn from the word's various uses in the Bible. In many instances, particularly in the Old Testament, it has reference to the older men in a tribe, usually entrusted with the governmental affairs[Exod 3:16][4:29][12:21][Josh 7:6][Ruth 4:2], whose counsel was frequently sought because of their age and experience. This was not necessarily a priesthood calling,[Gen 50:7][Ruth 4:2][Matt 15:2][Acts 4:5] although the Aaronic Priesthood is listed as having ordained elders.[Exod 24:9-11][Num 11:16] In the Septuagint, the word for Old Testament elders is presbuteros, as used in the New Testament for both Christian and Jewish leaders.[3] Various traditions in Christianity translate the underlying term differently depending on their particular doctrinal or practical view of the role. In the Moravian Church, an elder is referred to as a Helper.[4]

In addition to presbuteros, there are two other words used in the New Testament to describe various aspects of this position of leadership: 'overseer' and 'shepherd': Peter draws the three concepts together in one passage: "Therefore, I exhort the elders among you... shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight." [1Pet 5:1-2][Acts 20]

Presbuteros

Presbuteros (πρεσβύτερος, ) is the most commonly used term for elder in the New Testament, stemming from presbus, elderly.[5] It is used with regard to the twelve apostles,require('Module:No globals')

local p = {}

-- articles in which traditional Chinese preceeds simplified Chinese local t1st = { ["228 Incident"] = true, ["Chinese calendar"] = true, ["Lippo Centre, Hong Kong"] = true, ["Republic of China"] = true, ["Republic of China at the 1924 Summer Olympics"] = true, ["Taiwan"] = true, ["Taiwan (island)"] = true, ["Taiwan Province"] = true, ["Wei Boyang"] = true, }

-- the labels for each part local labels = { ["c"] = "Chinese", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Cantonese Yale", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Zhuyin Fuhao", ["l"] = "literally", }

-- article titles for wikilinks for each part local wlinks = { ["c"] = "Chinese language", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese characters", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese characters", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Yale romanization of Cantonese", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Bopomofo", }

-- for those parts which are to be treated as languages their ISO code local ISOlang = { ["c"] = "zh", ["t"] = "zh-Hant", ["s"] = "zh-Hans", ["p"] = "zh-Latn-pinyin", ["tp"] = "zh-Latn", ["w"] = "zh-Latn-wadegile", ["j"] = "yue-jyutping", ["cy"] = "yue", ["poj"] = "hak", ["zhu"] = "zh-Bopo", }

local italic = { ["p"] = true, ["tp"] = true, ["w"] = true, ["j"] = true, ["cy"] = true, ["poj"] = true, } -- Categories for different kinds of Chinese text local cats = { ["c"] = "", ["s"] = "", ["t"] = "", }

function p.Zh(frame) -- load arguments module to simplify handling of args local getArgs = require('Module:Arguments').getArgs local args = getArgs(frame) return p._Zh(args) end function p._Zh(args) local uselinks = not (args["links"] == "no") -- whether to add links local uselabels = not (args["labels"] == "no") -- whether to have labels local capfirst = args["scase"] ~= nil

        local t1 = false -- whether traditional Chinese characters go first
        local j1 = false -- whether Cantonese Romanisations go first
        local testChar
        if (args["first"]) then
                 for testChar in mw.ustring.gmatch(args["first"], "%a+") do
          if (testChar == "t") then
           t1 = true
           end
          if (testChar == "j") then
           j1 = true
           end
         end
        end
        if (t1 == false) then
         local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle()
         t1 = t1st[title.text] == true
        end

-- based on setting/preference specify order local orderlist = {"c", "s", "t", "p", "tp", "w", "j", "cy", "poj", "zhu", "l"} if (t1) then orderlist[2] = "t" orderlist[3] = "s" end if (j1) then orderlist[4] = "j" orderlist[5] = "cy" orderlist[6] = "p" orderlist[7] = "tp" orderlist[8] = "w" end -- rename rules. Rules to change parameters and labels based on other parameters if args["hp"] then -- hp an alias for p ([hanyu] pinyin) args["p"] = args["hp"] end if args["tp"] then -- if also Tongyu pinyin use full name for Hanyu pinyin labels["p"] = "Hanyu Pinyin" end if (args["s"] and args["s"] == args["t"]) then -- Treat simplified + traditional as Chinese if they're the same args["c"] = args["s"] args["s"] = nil args["t"] = nil elseif (not (args["s"] and args["t"])) then -- use short label if only one of simplified and traditional labels["s"] = labels["c"] labels["t"] = labels["c"] end local body = "" -- the output string local params -- for creating HTML spans local label -- the label, i.e. the bit preceeding the supplied text local val -- the supplied text -- go through all possible fields in loop, adding them to the output for i, part in ipairs(orderlist) do if (args[part]) then -- build label label = "" if (uselabels) then label = labels[part] if (capfirst) then label = mw.language.getContentLanguage():ucfirst( the seventy disciplesrequire('Module:No globals')

local p = {}

-- articles in which traditional Chinese preceeds simplified Chinese local t1st = { ["228 Incident"] = true, ["Chinese calendar"] = true, ["Lippo Centre, Hong Kong"] = true, ["Republic of China"] = true, ["Republic of China at the 1924 Summer Olympics"] = true, ["Taiwan"] = true, ["Taiwan (island)"] = true, ["Taiwan Province"] = true, ["Wei Boyang"] = true, }

-- the labels for each part local labels = { ["c"] = "Chinese", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Cantonese Yale", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Zhuyin Fuhao", ["l"] = "literally", }

-- article titles for wikilinks for each part local wlinks = { ["c"] = "Chinese language", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese characters", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese characters", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Yale romanization of Cantonese", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Bopomofo", }

-- for those parts which are to be treated as languages their ISO code local ISOlang = { ["c"] = "zh", ["t"] = "zh-Hant", ["s"] = "zh-Hans", ["p"] = "zh-Latn-pinyin", ["tp"] = "zh-Latn", ["w"] = "zh-Latn-wadegile", ["j"] = "yue-jyutping", ["cy"] = "yue", ["poj"] = "hak", ["zhu"] = "zh-Bopo", }

local italic = { ["p"] = true, ["tp"] = true, ["w"] = true, ["j"] = true, ["cy"] = true, ["poj"] = true, } -- Categories for different kinds of Chinese text local cats = { ["c"] = "", ["s"] = "", ["t"] = "", }

function p.Zh(frame) -- load arguments module to simplify handling of args local getArgs = require('Module:Arguments').getArgs local args = getArgs(frame) return p._Zh(args) end function p._Zh(args) local uselinks = not (args["links"] == "no") -- whether to add links local uselabels = not (args["labels"] == "no") -- whether to have labels local capfirst = args["scase"] ~= nil

        local t1 = false -- whether traditional Chinese characters go first
        local j1 = false -- whether Cantonese Romanisations go first
        local testChar
        if (args["first"]) then
                 for testChar in mw.ustring.gmatch(args["first"], "%a+") do
          if (testChar == "t") then
           t1 = true
           end
          if (testChar == "j") then
           j1 = true
           end
         end
        end
        if (t1 == false) then
         local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle()
         t1 = t1st[title.text] == true
        end

-- based on setting/preference specify order local orderlist = {"c", "s", "t", "p", "tp", "w", "j", "cy", "poj", "zhu", "l"} if (t1) then orderlist[2] = "t" orderlist[3] = "s" end if (j1) then orderlist[4] = "j" orderlist[5] = "cy" orderlist[6] = "p" orderlist[7] = "tp" orderlist[8] = "w" end -- rename rules. Rules to change parameters and labels based on other parameters if args["hp"] then -- hp an alias for p ([hanyu] pinyin) args["p"] = args["hp"] end if args["tp"] then -- if also Tongyu pinyin use full name for Hanyu pinyin labels["p"] = "Hanyu Pinyin" end if (args["s"] and args["s"] == args["t"]) then -- Treat simplified + traditional as Chinese if they're the same args["c"] = args["s"] args["s"] = nil args["t"] = nil elseif (not (args["s"] and args["t"])) then -- use short label if only one of simplified and traditional labels["s"] = labels["c"] labels["t"] = labels["c"] end local body = "" -- the output string local params -- for creating HTML spans local label -- the label, i.e. the bit preceeding the supplied text local val -- the supplied text -- go through all possible fields in loop, adding them to the output for i, part in ipairs(orderlist) do if (args[part]) then -- build label label = "" if (uselabels) then label = labels[part] if (capfirst) then label = mw.language.getContentLanguage():ucfirst( or others acting in a specific role of authority in a local assembly of Christians. It is used twenty-eight times in the Gospels and Acts of the members of the Jewish Sanhedrin and twelve times in Revelation of the representatives of the redeemed people of God. The remaining nineteen times the word is employed in Acts and the Epistles, it identifies the leaders in the local churches of the New Testament. While no specific age is given, the connotation of seniority and experience in this term emphasizes the nature of the position and the character of the person, implying maturity, dignity, experience and honor.[6][7]

The modern English words "priest" or "presbyter" are derived etymologically from presbyteros.[8]

Episkopos

Episkopos (ἐπίσκοπος, Greek word #1985 in Strong's) was a common word in the Greek culture for any official who acted as a superintendent, manager, overseer, controller, curator, guardian or ruler.[9] It occurs only five times in the New Testament, once referring to Christ[1Pet 2:25] and the other four times to church leaders. The Authorised Version translates the word as "bishop", emphasizing the function of an elder as exercising authority and supervision "by divine placement, initiative and design."[6]

Poimen

Poimen (ποιμήν, Greek word #4166 in Strong's) means shepherd,[10] also translated as pastor[Eph 4:11]. It is applied only once in the noun form and three times in the verb form in the New Testament in the context of church leaders. The term emphasizes the elder as one who tends, feeds, guides, protects and cares for his flock.[6]

Responsibilities of elders

The New Testament offers more instruction regarding elders than on many other important church subjects such as the Lord's Supper, the Lord's Day, baptism or spiritual gifts,[6] and their duties are laid out in several places. In the majority of the references, the word for elders is plural and word for church is singular,[11][12] suggesting that the pattern in the early church was for a plurality of elders in each local church.[13][14] These were to be shepherds to their flock, setting an example[1Pet 5:1-3] - just like shepherds, they were to feed their flock[Acts 20:28], to work hard among them and to reprove where necessary[1Thes 5:12-13] and to care for the spiritual and physical needs of church members.[Jas 5] Elders are considered rulers over their flocks[1Tim 5:17][1Thes 5:12] and their judgement to be submitted to,[Heb 13:17] not so that they can be "lords over God's heritage,"[1Pet 5:3] but because they are to give account to God for the spiritual character of their church.[Heb 13:17]

Elders must to be able to teach and preach sound doctrine and rebuke those who are teaching error, so that false teaching doesn't creep into the church.[1Tim 5:17][Tit 1:9-13] To this end, they are also to train and appoint others.[Acts 14:23][1Tim 4:14][Tit 1:5] Above all, the elder is to serve with humility, remembering that their position is a picture of Christ as the chief shepherd.[1Pet 5:4]

Qualifications

There are two key passages dealing with the qualifications of elders in the New Testament, 1Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9.[13] The qualifications given by the Apostle Paul are as follows:

  • Blameless as a steward of God, above reproach
  • Faithful husband of one wife
  • Temperate, sober, vigilant
  • Sober-minded, prudent
  • Of good behaviour, orderly, respectable
  • Given to hospitality
  • Able to teach
  • Not given to wine
  • Not violent, not pugnacious
  • Patient, moderate, forbearing, gentle
  • Uncontentious, not soon angry or quick-tempered
  • Not covetous, not a lover of money
  • Rules his own house well, his children are faithful, not accused of rebellion to God
  • Not a novice or new convert
  • Has a good rapport or reputation with outsiders
  • Not self-willed
  • A lover of what is good
  • Just, fair
  • Holy, devout
  • Self-controlled
  • Hold firmly to the faithful message as it has been taught

Elders in the early church

Where elders are addressed in the writings of Paul and Peter, there is no inference of a monarchical episcopacy or single leaders in any of the New Testament-era churches,[1Pet 5:1-3][Phil 1:1] and presbuteros and episkopos are used interchangeably. This was still the case later in the century: the writings of the Apostolic Fathers (such as 1 Clement and the Didache) continue to assert the apostolic authority of the bishops/presbyters as rulers of the church making no distinction between the two terms. The epistle does imply a degree of authority residing in the Bishop of Rome.[15][16] Writing c.199, Tertullian claimed that Clement was ordained by Peter himself as bishop of Rome,[17] and although tradition identifies him as the fourth pope (after Linus and Anacletus) the order is much disputed.[18] According to the Liber Pontificalis, Linus and Anacletus were ordained with responsibility for the church at Rome and Clement for the church as a whole[19]

Another of the Apostolic Fathers, Ignatius of Antioch, records that many churches had single bishops by the beginning of the second century, although the church at Rome was not one of them.[20] This became the norm by the middle of the century.[21] Ignatius distinguished the relationship between bishop, presbyters and diaconate typologically and in doing so referred to the practice of a single bishop in a church, separated from the body of presbyters and deacons:

In like manner let all men respect the deacons as Jesus Christ, even as they should respect the bishop as being a type of the Father and the presbyters as the council of God and as the college of Apostles. Apart from these there is not even the name of a church.Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallesians 3:1.

Distinctions in practice

Church governance is generally organised in one of three main types:

Baptists

Historically, Baptist churches do not recognize elder as a separate office and it is commonly considered synonymous with that of deacon or pastor.[22] This is not universal in Baptist circles, however, and there are many Baptist churches which are elder-led. The Southern Baptist Convention does not prescribe an elder-led pattern, although a number of churches in this convention,[13] and other Baptist branches (including Reformed Baptists) are governed by a group of elders.

Christadelphianism

evangelism, youth and Sunday School work, military service issues, care of the elderly and humanitarian work. These do not have any legislative authority and are wholly dependent upon support from within the church. Women are typically not eligible to teach in formal gatherings of the ecclesia when male believers are present, and do not sit on the main committees, however they do participate in other ecclesial and inter-ecclesial committees.

Churches of Christ

Congregations referring to themselves as Restoration Movement, such as the Independent Christian Church.

Church of God in Christ

In the Church of God in Christ, an elder is an ordained clergy person. This person may serve as a pastor or assistant pastor. Also, if the pastor or bishop finds them worthy, after a few years of being their assistant, the pastor (or bishop) will allow them to be the pastor of their own church and leader of their own congregation.

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Elders are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who have the Melchizedek Priesthood and have been ordained to the office of elder. Additionally, male missionaries of the Church, General Authorities and Area Authority Seventies are honorarily titled "Elder" unless they are instead referred to by the title of President.

The detailed duties of the ordained elders in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today have been defined in the book of Doctrine and Covenants. Elder is the proper title given to all holders of the Melchizedek Priesthood. Thus an apostle is an elder in this sense, and it is proper to speak of members of the Quorum of the Twelve or the First Quorum of the Seventy by this title.[25].

Church of Scotland

Governance in the Church of Scotland is based on presbyterian polity. There are several roles in the ministry including ministers of Word and Sacrament, chaplains, deacons and readers. Elders are another role, which is voluntary and un-salaried elders. They are ordained for life by the minister and Kirk Session of a parish, and carry out pastoral and local church government duties under the guidance of the minister. All elders are members of the Kirk session, and may train to chair the session, conduct funerals, preach and lead worship.[26]

Congregational churches

Congregational churches are generally run by committee rule, and elders are one office which is appointed by the committee. The governance of each church is arranged with a system of checks and balances so that undue power is never given to one office or individual.

Eastern Orthodox

In the Eastern Orthodox Church the term presbyter is used to refer to priests, whose authority is considered to be an extension of that of the local bishop. In Orthodox theology, the charism of Eldership (itself an extenuation of Prophesy) continues to this day in monasticism. An experienced monastic Elder (}

}}: Geronta; Slavonic: Starets) will provide guidance not only for their fellow monks, but for the laity as well.

Jehovah's Witnesses

Among elder is a man appointed to teach the congregation. He is also called an "overseer" or "servant". Elders within each congregation work within a "body of elders", several of whom are assigned to oversee specific congregational tasks. Each body of elders has a Coordinator (previously known as the Presiding Overseer), a Secretary, and a Service Overseer. Witnesses consider the office of elder to be the same as that referred to in the Bible as "older man" ("presbyter"), overseer ("bishop"), and shepherd ("pastor") but do not use any of the terms as titles.

Representatives of the ministerial servants (equivalent to deacons), and appointments are decided by the circuit overseer.[27] Congregation elders do not receive monetary compensation; traveling overseers receive a modest stipend.

Lutheranism

An Elder in the Lutheran Church is a position of lay-service, concerned with the temporal and administrative affair of the congregation. In many congregations, elders are also charged with oversight of the pastor but exercising only that oversight given to every Christian in the congregation. They are also assigned to assist the pastor in the sacraments (the Eucharist and Baptism). In the Eucharist, the Elder may assist in the distribution. In Baptism, the Elder may hold the water or assist the pastor in other ways. Generally, an elder is not permitted to consecrate the bread and wine in the Eucharist, or perform Holy Absolution, as these acts are usually reserved for the pastor. An Elder helps brothers at each congregation.

Methodism

An Elder - sometimes called a "Presbyter" - is someone who has been ordained by a bishop to the ministry of Word, Sacrament, Order, and Service. Their responsibilities are to preach and teach, preside at the celebration of the sacraments, administer the church through pastoral guidance, and lead the congregations under their care in service ministry to the world.[28] The office of Elder, then, is what most people tend to think of as the pastoral, priestly, clergy office within the church. Indeed, even a Methodist Bishop is still an Elder who has been elected and consecrated by the laying on of hands to the office of Bishop (Bishop being understood as an office within the Presbyterate, not an order or separate level of ordination). In most of the denominations within Methodism, ordination to the office of Elder is open to both women and men.

Plymouth Brethren

One of the key distinctions of Plymouth Brethren churches is the total rejection of the concept of clergy.[29] In keeping with the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers, they view all Christians as being ordained by God to serve and therefore ministers. Leaders are chosen according to the qualifications found in 1Tim 3:1-7 and Tit. 1:6-9, and appointed by the Holy Spirit.[Acts 20:28] Plymouth Brethren churches tend to have multiple elders based on the plural use of the word in reference to New Testament churches.

One branch of the Plymouth Brethren, the Exclusive Brethren, are so named for their practice of serving the Lord's Supper exclusively to those who are part of their own particular group, agreeing with them on various doctrinal positions.[30] Most Exclusive Brethren groups believe the church to have been in ruins between the death of the apostles and their own time. Since no truly apostolic authority exists to appoint elders the church has none. Instead they recognize "leading brothers" who demonstrate maturity and leadership ability.require('Module:No globals')

local p = {}

-- articles in which traditional Chinese preceeds simplified Chinese local t1st = { ["228 Incident"] = true, ["Chinese calendar"] = true, ["Lippo Centre, Hong Kong"] = true, ["Republic of China"] = true, ["Republic of China at the 1924 Summer Olympics"] = true, ["Taiwan"] = true, ["Taiwan (island)"] = true, ["Taiwan Province"] = true, ["Wei Boyang"] = true, }

-- the labels for each part local labels = { ["c"] = "Chinese", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Cantonese Yale", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Zhuyin Fuhao", ["l"] = "literally", }

-- article titles for wikilinks for each part local wlinks = { ["c"] = "Chinese language", ["s"] = "simplified Chinese characters", ["t"] = "traditional Chinese characters", ["p"] = "pinyin", ["tp"] = "Tongyong Pinyin", ["w"] = "Wade–Giles", ["j"] = "Jyutping", ["cy"] = "Yale romanization of Cantonese", ["poj"] = "Pe̍h-ōe-jī", ["zhu"] = "Bopomofo", }

-- for those parts which are to be treated as languages their ISO code local ISOlang = { ["c"] = "zh", ["t"] = "zh-Hant", ["s"] = "zh-Hans", ["p"] = "zh-Latn-pinyin", ["tp"] = "zh-Latn", ["w"] = "zh-Latn-wadegile", ["j"] = "yue-jyutping", ["cy"] = "yue", ["poj"] = "hak", ["zhu"] = "zh-Bopo", }

local italic = { ["p"] = true, ["tp"] = true, ["w"] = true, ["j"] = true, ["cy"] = true, ["poj"] = true, } -- Categories for different kinds of Chinese text local cats = { ["c"] = "", ["s"] = "", ["t"] = "", }

function p.Zh(frame) -- load arguments module to simplify handling of args local getArgs = require('Module:Arguments').getArgs local args = getArgs(frame) return p._Zh(args) end function p._Zh(args) local uselinks = not (args["links"] == "no") -- whether to add links local uselabels = not (args["labels"] == "no") -- whether to have labels local capfirst = args["scase"] ~= nil

        local t1 = false -- whether traditional Chinese characters go first
        local j1 = false -- whether Cantonese Romanisations go first
        local testChar
        if (args["first"]) then
                 for testChar in mw.ustring.gmatch(args["first"], "%a+") do
          if (testChar == "t") then
           t1 = true
           end
          if (testChar == "j") then
           j1 = true
           end
         end
        end
        if (t1 == false) then
         local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle()
         t1 = t1st[title.text] == true
        end

-- based on setting/preference specify order local orderlist = {"c", "s", "t", "p", "tp", "w", "j", "cy", "poj", "zhu", "l"} if (t1) then orderlist[2] = "t" orderlist[3] = "s" end if (j1) then orderlist[4] = "j" orderlist[5] = "cy" orderlist[6] = "p" orderlist[7] = "tp" orderlist[8] = "w" end -- rename rules. Rules to change parameters and labels based on other parameters if args["hp"] then -- hp an alias for p ([hanyu] pinyin) args["p"] = args["hp"] end if args["tp"] then -- if also Tongyu pinyin use full name for Hanyu pinyin labels["p"] = "Hanyu Pinyin" end if (args["s"] and args["s"] == args["t"]) then -- Treat simplified + traditional as Chinese if they're the same args["c"] = args["s"] args["s"] = nil args["t"] = nil elseif (not (args["s"] and args["t"])) then -- use short label if only one of simplified and traditional labels["s"] = labels["c"] labels["t"] = labels["c"] end local body = "" -- the output string local params -- for creating HTML spans local label -- the label, i.e. the bit preceeding the supplied text local val -- the supplied text -- go through all possible fields in loop, adding them to the output for i, part in ipairs(orderlist) do if (args[part]) then -- build label label = "" if (uselabels) then label = labels[part] if (capfirst) then label = mw.language.getContentLanguage():ucfirst(

Presbyterianism

Although practices in the Presbyterian Church vary internationally, typically the church recognises three offices within church polity: the minister, teaching elder or pastor, a bench of ruling elders, and deacons.[31] The elders are "ordained lay" people and are appointed by and form the session, which is a ruling council for their congregation.

Quakers (Religious Society of Friends)

In the Religious Society of Friends, there are four church offices reflecting the four words used to describe those in church leadership in the New Testament - elders (presbuteros), overseers (episkopos), pastors (poimen) and ministers (diakonos). Elders and overseers exist in most Quaker meetings, but some have eliminated the acknowledgement of ministers (e.g. in Britain it was abolished in 1924). Pastors are common in the programmed tradition of Friends' meetings. Elders are responsible for the spiritual oversight of the meeting, in particular for encouraging spiritual and ministerial development, study of the Bible and disciplining Friends who express unsound doctrines during the meeting for worship. Overseers are responsible for bringing together the worshiping community, inviting people to become members of the Meeting and encouraging members to attend. Pastors take on both these roles, often in a paid capacity. Recorded ministers are noted for their particular gift in giving vocal ministry during meeting for worship.

Rastafari

Members of the Rastafari Movement often refer to their experienced members as elders, such as Joseph Hibbert, Vernon Carrington, Leonard Howell, and Mortimer Planno.

Roman Catholic Church

Members of the Catholic Church still use the Greek word Presbyter (πρεσβύτερος, presbuteros: "elder", or "priest" in Christian usage) to refer to priests (priest is etymologically derived from the Greek presbyteros via the Latin presbyter). Collectively, however, their "college" is referred to as the "presbyterium" (meaning "council of elders"), "presbytery", or "presbyterate."

The presbyterium is most visible during the ordination of new priests and bishops and the Mass of the Chrism (the Holy Thursday Mass) where the blessing of the oils used in the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, Anointing of the Sick, and Holy Orders takes place. They are also visible during other special liturgical functions such as the wake and burial of their bishop.

Seventh-day Adventist Church

In each local church, the Pastor works with a local elder, who is appointed by the local congregation and ordained by the pastor. The elder is considered a religious leader in the local church and is able to conduct . In some cases more than one elder is appointed, with one designated the "head elder". The elder is largely responsible for running the church and allocating responsibilities therein. Whereas "pastor" is often used as a title, "elder" is not. The local elder's authority is limited to the church in which he serves, whereas pastors have wider authority.

'Elder' is also used as a title used to denote an ordained clergy. Those persons who are unordained clergy are often and universally addressed as 'pastor'. If one is ordained and remains in the local church, they are often titled interchangeably as 'Pastor or Elder'. Once the ordained clergyman leaves the local church and begins their service within the Adventist Church's organizational leadership, e.g. Conference/Union/Division/General Conference offices as departmental directors, etc., they are universally addressed as 'Elder', as in the case of the current (World Church) President of the General Conference 'Elder' Ted Wilson.

Shakerism

Among the Shakers, noted for their acceptance of females in leading roles, Elders and Eldresses were leaders in specific areas. Two Elders and Eldresses headed the central Shaker ministry at the Mount Lebanon Shaker Society and dealt with both spiritual and temporal matters. Other pairs of elders and eldresses headed groups of Shaker communities, while others were spiritual leaders of smaller groups within the communities.

See also

References


-- Module:Hatnote -- -- -- -- This module produces hatnote links and links to related articles. It -- -- implements the and meta-templates and includes -- -- helper functions for other Lua hatnote modules. --


local libraryUtil = require('libraryUtil') local checkType = libraryUtil.checkType local mArguments -- lazily initialise Module:Arguments local yesno -- lazily initialise Module:Yesno

local p = {}


-- Helper functions


local function getArgs(frame) -- Fetches the arguments from the parent frame. Whitespace is trimmed and -- blanks are removed. mArguments = require('Module:Arguments') return mArguments.getArgs(frame, {parentOnly = true}) end

local function removeInitialColon(s) -- Removes the initial colon from a string, if present. return s:match('^:?(.*)') end

function p.findNamespaceId(link, removeColon) -- Finds the namespace id (namespace number) of a link or a pagename. This -- function will not work if the link is enclosed in double brackets. Colons -- are trimmed from the start of the link by default. To skip colon -- trimming, set the removeColon parameter to true. checkType('findNamespaceId', 1, link, 'string') checkType('findNamespaceId', 2, removeColon, 'boolean', true) if removeColon ~= false then link = removeInitialColon(link) end local namespace = link:match('^(.-):') if namespace then local nsTable = mw.site.namespaces[namespace] if nsTable then return nsTable.id end end return 0 end

function p.formatPages(...) -- Formats a list of pages using formatLink and returns it as an array. Nil -- values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local ret = {} for i, page in ipairs(pages) do ret[i] = p._formatLink(page) end return ret end

function p.formatPageTables(...) -- Takes a list of page/display tables and returns it as a list of -- formatted links. Nil values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local links = {} for i, t in ipairs(pages) do checkType('formatPageTables', i, t, 'table') local link = t[1] local display = t[2] links[i] = p._formatLink(link, display) end return links end

function p.makeWikitextError(msg, helpLink, addTrackingCategory) -- Formats an error message to be returned to wikitext. If -- addTrackingCategory is not false after being returned from -- Module:Yesno, and if we are not on a talk page, a tracking category -- is added. checkType('makeWikitextError', 1, msg, 'string') checkType('makeWikitextError', 2, helpLink, 'string', true) yesno = require('Module:Yesno') local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle() -- Make the help link text. local helpText if helpLink then helpText = ' (help)' else helpText = end -- Make the category text. local category if not title.isTalkPage and yesno(addTrackingCategory) ~= false then category = 'Hatnote templates with errors' category = string.format( '%s:%s', mw.site.namespaces[14].name, category ) else category = end return string.format( '%s', msg, helpText, category ) end


-- Format link -- -- Makes a wikilink from the given link and display values. Links are escaped -- with colons if necessary, and links to sections are detected and displayed -- with " § " as a separator rather than the standard MediaWiki "#". Used in -- the template.


function p.formatLink(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local link = args[1] local display = args[2] if not link then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no link specified', 'Template:Format hatnote link#Errors', args.category ) end return p._formatLink(link, display) end

function p._formatLink(link, display) -- Find whether we need to use the colon trick or not. We need to use the -- colon trick for categories and files, as otherwise category links -- categorise the page and file links display the file. checkType('_formatLink', 1, link, 'string') checkType('_formatLink', 2, display, 'string', true) link = removeInitialColon(link) local namespace = p.findNamespaceId(link, false) local colon if namespace == 6 or namespace == 14 then colon = ':' else colon = end -- Find whether a faux display value has been added with the | magic -- word. if not display then local prePipe, postPipe = link:match('^(.-)|(.*)$') link = prePipe or link display = postPipe end -- Find the display value. if not display then local page, section = link:match('^(.-)#(.*)$') if page then display = page .. ' § ' .. section end end -- Assemble the link. if display then return string.format('%s', colon, link, display) else return string.format('%s%s', colon, link) end end


-- Hatnote -- -- Produces standard hatnote text. Implements the template.


function p.hatnote(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local s = args[1] local options = {} if not s then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no text specified', 'Template:Hatnote#Errors', args.category ) end options.extraclasses = args.extraclasses options.selfref = args.selfref return p._hatnote(s, options) end

function p._hatnote(s, options) checkType('_hatnote', 1, s, 'string') checkType('_hatnote', 2, options, 'table', true) local classes = {'hatnote'} local extraclasses = options.extraclasses local selfref = options.selfref if type(extraclasses) == 'string' then classes[#classes + 1] = extraclasses end if selfref then classes[#classes + 1] = 'selfref' end return string.format( '
%s
', table.concat(classes, ' '), s )

end

return p-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -- Module:Hatnote -- -- -- -- This module produces hatnote links and links to related articles. It -- -- implements the and meta-templates and includes -- -- helper functions for other Lua hatnote modules. --


local libraryUtil = require('libraryUtil') local checkType = libraryUtil.checkType local mArguments -- lazily initialise Module:Arguments local yesno -- lazily initialise Module:Yesno

local p = {}


-- Helper functions


local function getArgs(frame) -- Fetches the arguments from the parent frame. Whitespace is trimmed and -- blanks are removed. mArguments = require('Module:Arguments') return mArguments.getArgs(frame, {parentOnly = true}) end

local function removeInitialColon(s) -- Removes the initial colon from a string, if present. return s:match('^:?(.*)') end

function p.findNamespaceId(link, removeColon) -- Finds the namespace id (namespace number) of a link or a pagename. This -- function will not work if the link is enclosed in double brackets. Colons -- are trimmed from the start of the link by default. To skip colon -- trimming, set the removeColon parameter to true. checkType('findNamespaceId', 1, link, 'string') checkType('findNamespaceId', 2, removeColon, 'boolean', true) if removeColon ~= false then link = removeInitialColon(link) end local namespace = link:match('^(.-):') if namespace then local nsTable = mw.site.namespaces[namespace] if nsTable then return nsTable.id end end return 0 end

function p.formatPages(...) -- Formats a list of pages using formatLink and returns it as an array. Nil -- values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local ret = {} for i, page in ipairs(pages) do ret[i] = p._formatLink(page) end return ret end

function p.formatPageTables(...) -- Takes a list of page/display tables and returns it as a list of -- formatted links. Nil values are not allowed. local pages = {...} local links = {} for i, t in ipairs(pages) do checkType('formatPageTables', i, t, 'table') local link = t[1] local display = t[2] links[i] = p._formatLink(link, display) end return links end

function p.makeWikitextError(msg, helpLink, addTrackingCategory) -- Formats an error message to be returned to wikitext. If -- addTrackingCategory is not false after being returned from -- Module:Yesno, and if we are not on a talk page, a tracking category -- is added. checkType('makeWikitextError', 1, msg, 'string') checkType('makeWikitextError', 2, helpLink, 'string', true) yesno = require('Module:Yesno') local title = mw.title.getCurrentTitle() -- Make the help link text. local helpText if helpLink then helpText = ' (help)' else helpText = end -- Make the category text. local category if not title.isTalkPage and yesno(addTrackingCategory) ~= false then category = 'Hatnote templates with errors' category = string.format( '%s:%s', mw.site.namespaces[14].name, category ) else category = end return string.format( '%s', msg, helpText, category ) end


-- Format link -- -- Makes a wikilink from the given link and display values. Links are escaped -- with colons if necessary, and links to sections are detected and displayed -- with " § " as a separator rather than the standard MediaWiki "#". Used in -- the template.


function p.formatLink(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local link = args[1] local display = args[2] if not link then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no link specified', 'Template:Format hatnote link#Errors', args.category ) end return p._formatLink(link, display) end

function p._formatLink(link, display) -- Find whether we need to use the colon trick or not. We need to use the -- colon trick for categories and files, as otherwise category links -- categorise the page and file links display the file. checkType('_formatLink', 1, link, 'string') checkType('_formatLink', 2, display, 'string', true) link = removeInitialColon(link) local namespace = p.findNamespaceId(link, false) local colon if namespace == 6 or namespace == 14 then colon = ':' else colon = end -- Find whether a faux display value has been added with the | magic -- word. if not display then local prePipe, postPipe = link:match('^(.-)|(.*)$') link = prePipe or link display = postPipe end -- Find the display value. if not display then local page, section = link:match('^(.-)#(.*)$') if page then display = page .. ' § ' .. section end end -- Assemble the link. if display then return string.format('%s', colon, link, display) else return string.format('%s%s', colon, link) end end


-- Hatnote -- -- Produces standard hatnote text. Implements the template.


function p.hatnote(frame) local args = getArgs(frame) local s = args[1] local options = {} if not s then return p.makeWikitextError( 'no text specified', 'Template:Hatnote#Errors', args.category ) end options.extraclasses = args.extraclasses options.selfref = args.selfref return p._hatnote(s, options) end

function p._hatnote(s, options) checkType('_hatnote', 1, s, 'string') checkType('_hatnote', 2, options, 'table', true) local classes = {'hatnote'} local extraclasses = options.extraclasses local selfref = options.selfref if type(extraclasses) == 'string' then classes[#classes + 1] = extraclasses end if selfref then classes[#classes + 1] = 'selfref' end return string.format( '
%s
', table.concat(classes, ' '), s )

end

return p
  1. ^ The Human Elder in Nature, Culture, and Society by David Gutmann, 1997, Westview Press, ISBN 0-8133-2973-6, Preface
  2. ^ Ahmad, IftikharWorld Cultures: a Global Mosaic (1993) Prentice Hall, page 14: "In cultures with extended families, respect for elders is strong. The elders pass on their wisdom to the young."
  3. ^ "What does the Bible say about the form of church government (polity)?"
  4. ^ Moravian Moments #8
  5. ^ Studylight.org, presbuteros
  6. ^ a b c d Strauch, A. (1995). Biblical Eldership. Lewis and Roth Publishers
  7. ^ Huston, D. The New Testament Elders Presented to a symposium on Apostolic beliefs held at the Urshan Graduate School of Theology in Florissant, MO
  8. ^ Webster's New World Dictionary of the American Language, College Edition, The World Publishing Company, Cleveland OH, s.v. "priest"
  9. ^ StudyLight.org episkopos
  10. ^ StudyLight.org poimen
  11. ^ Wallace, Daniel B. 'Who should run the church? A case for the plurality of elders'
  12. ^ Knight, G.W. 1992 (A Commentary on the Pastoral Epistles. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, pp.175-177
  13. ^ a b c The Biblical Case for Elder Rule
  14. ^ Viola, F. and Barna, G. (2008) Pagan Christianity: exploring the roots of our church practices Carol Stream:Tyndale House
  15. ^ Granfield, P. and Phan, P.C., (2000) The Gift of the Church: A Textbook On Ecclesiology In Honor Of Patrick Granfield, O.S.B, (Collegeville: Liturgical Press), p. 32.
  16. ^ John Meyendorff, The Primacy of Peter: Essays in Ecclesiology and the Early Church(St Vladimir's Seminary Press, 1992), p. 135–136
  17. ^ , 32Prescription Against HereticsTertullian,
  18. ^ Catholic Encyclopedia: Pope St Clement I)
  19. ^ Liber Pontificalis 2
  20. ^ Ehrman, Bart. Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene: The Followers of Jesus in History and Legend. Oxford University Press, USA. 2006. ISBN 0-19-530013-0
  21. ^ "Bishop". Cross, F. L., ed. The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. New York: Oxford University Press. 2005
  22. ^ A Leading QuestionFiddes, P. London: Baptist Publications
  23. ^ Ron Rhodes, The Complete Guide to Christian Denominations, Harvest House Publishers, 2005, ISBN 0-7369-1289-4
  24. ^ Howard, V.E. (1971) What Is the Church of Christ? 4th Edition (Revised) Central Printers & Publishers, West Monroe, Louisiana
  25. ^ Doctrine and Covenants (D&C) 20: 38; cf. 1 Pet. 5: 1; 2 Jn. 1: 1; 3 Jn. 1: 1
  26. ^ Church of Scotland website
  27. ^ , pages 28,29The Watch Tower"Questions From Readers",
  28. ^ The Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church. Nashville: The United Methodist Publishing House, 1984
  29. ^ , 13(1)Precious SeedHolmes, F. (1962) Regarding Elders.
  30. ^ BBC website
  31. ^ (New York: Jonathan Leavitt; Boston: Crocker and Brewster, 1831). In the public domain. Chapter 1 retrieved on November 29, 2010An Essay, on the Warrant, Nature and Duties of the Office of the Ruling Elder, in the Presbyterian ChurchMiller, Samuel. 1831.

External links

  • BiblicalElders.com - a website dedicated to the teaching of NT Church Government
  • The Biblical Case for Elder Rule by Dan Dumas, executive pastor Grace Community Church
  • McGarvey, J.W., A treatise on the eldership (1870) - audiobook
  • Wallace, Daniel B. Who Should Run The Church? A Case for the Plurality of Elders
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