Trend Watch

Ecumenical

When:

Lookups on Merriam-Webster.com spiked on November 7, 2010.

Why:

This week, the National Council of Churches held a conference in New Orleans to mark the 100th anniversary of the ecumenical movement – which inspired many people to look up that word.

Ecumenical means "representing the whole of a body of churches" or "promoting worldwide Christian unity or cooperation."

The ecumenical movement began at the 1910 World Missionary Conference in Edinburgh, Scotland, where representatives from many Protestant denominations gathered to discuss shared goals.

Ecumenical comes from a Greek word that means "the inhabited world."

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