ec·​u·​men·​i·​cal | \ ˌe-kyə-ˈme-ni-kəl How to pronounce ecumenical (audio) , -kyü- \

Definition of ecumenical

1a : of, relating to, or representing the whole of a body of churches
b : promoting or tending toward worldwide Christian unity or cooperation
2 : worldwide or general in extent, influence, or application

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from ecumenical

ecumenically \ ˌe-​kyə-​ˈme-​ni-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce ecumenically (audio) , -​kyü-​ \ adverb

Examples of ecumenical in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The school was created as an ecumenical school, inclusive of all faith traditions. Brian Albrecht, cleveland, "Urban Community School beat the odds to become a beacon for low-income students: Cleveland Champions," 1 Dec. 2019 An ecumenical community Thanksgiving service, sponsored by the Park Ridge Ministerial Association, will take place Tuesday, Nov. 26 at 7:30 p.m. at Park Ridge Community Church, 100 S. Courtland, Park Ridge. Jennifer Johnson,, "What’s happening in Park Ridge: Volunteers sought for Blanket of Dreams; food drive, Toys for Tots launched," 18 Nov. 2019 West is ecumenical: He was married by a Pentecostal minister, while his wife and his children have been baptized in the Armenian Orthodox Church (at the Etchmiadzin Cathedral, in Vagharshapat, Armenia). Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "The Gospel According to Kanye," 7 Nov. 2019 The most comprehensive and widely shared statement of Christian orthodoxy is found in the creed first adopted at an ecumenical council convened by Constantine in the city of Nicaea in 325 a.d. Christopher Beha, Harper's magazine, "How to Read the Bible," 28 Oct. 2019 Despite the stipulation, the school’s founding is an ecumenical triumph: Twenty-two of the buildings were granted for the Catholic school’s operations, and six were given to a group that would preserve Moody’s legacy through a museum. William Z. Nardi, National Review, "A Traditional Catholic College in the Second-Least Religious State," 9 Oct. 2019 This year Catholic communities and pastors have joined ecumenical communities around the world in celebrating the Season of Creation from Sept. 1 to Oct. 4., "San Antonians can walk a Pilgrimage for Creation this Sunday," 4 Sep. 2019 Thousands turned out for the ecumenical funeral in St. Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast. Susan Mckay, The New Yorker, "The Incredible Life and Tragic Death of Lyra McKee," 26 July 2019 Eddy and his peers were charged not only with wrapping Aramco in a myth of enlightened capitalism but also animating ground-level operations with a tenor of intercultural and ecumenical exchange. Darren Dochuk, The New Republic, "Men of God and the Genesis of the U.S.-Saudi Relationship," 17 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ecumenical.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of ecumenical

circa 1587, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for ecumenical

Late Latin oecumenicus, from Late Greek oikoumenikos, from Greek oikoumenē the inhabited world, from feminine of oikoumenos, present passive participle of oikein to inhabit, from oikos house — more at vicinity

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ecumenical

Time Traveler for ecumenical

Time Traveler

The first known use of ecumenical was circa 1587

See more words from the same year

Statistics for ecumenical

Last Updated

4 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Ecumenical.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 10 December 2019.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ecumenical


How to pronounce ecumenical (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ecumenical

: involving people from different kinds of Christian churches

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on ecumenical

Spanish Central: Translation of ecumenical

Nglish: Translation of ecumenical for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ecumenical for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ecumenical

What made you want to look up ecumenical? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to state or do over again or repeatedly

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Semantic Drift Quiz

  • a twisty river
  • Which of the following was once a synonym for fun?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!