1

minister

noun min·is·ter \ ˈmi-nə-stər \
|Updated on: 8 Aug 2018

Definition of minister

1 : agent
  • the angels are ministers of the divine will
  • —H. P. Liddon
2 a : one officiating or assisting the officiant in church worship
b : a clergyman or clergywoman especially of a Protestant communion
3 a : the superior (see 2superior 1) of one of several religious orders called also minister-general
b : the assistant to the rector or the bursar of a Jesuit house
4 : a high officer of state entrusted with the management of a division of governmental activities
  • the British Minister of Defence
5 a : a diplomatic representative (such as an ambassador) accredited to the court (see 1court 1c) or seat of government of a foreign state
b : a diplomatic representative ranking below an ambassador

Examples of minister in a Sentence

  1. the British ministers at the international peace conference

  2. our minister gives an interesting sermon every week

Recent Examples of minister from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of minister

Middle English ministre "servant, ecclesiastic, priest, official serving a superior, agent," borrowed from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin minister "servant, ecclesiastic (short for Deī minister "servant of god"), agent, official," going back to Latin, "servant, priest's attendant, agent," formed from minor-, minus "less, lesser" (with the suffix of location and opposition -ter) after magister "manager, 1master" — more at 1minus

Other Christian Religious Terms


2

minister

verb

Definition of minister

ministered; ministering \-st(ə-)riŋ\
1 : to function as a minister of religion
2 : to give aid or service
  • minister to the sick

Recent Examples of minister from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of minister

Middle English ministren, borrowed from Anglo-French ministrer, borrowed from Latin ministrāre "to act as a servant, serve, supply" (Late Latin, "to serve as an ecclesiastic"), derivative of minister "servant, 1minister"

Other Christian Religious Terms



MINISTER Defined for English Language Learners

minister

Definition of minister for English Language Learners

  • : a person whose job involves leading church services, performing religious ceremonies (such as marriages), and providing spiritual or religious guidance to other people : a member of the clergy in some Protestant churches

  • : an official who heads a government department or a major section of a department in some countries (such as Britain)

  • : a person who represents his or her own government while living in a foreign country


MINISTER Defined for Kids

1

minister

noun min·is·ter \ ˈmi-nə-stər \

Definition of minister for Students

1 : a person who performs religious ceremonies especially in Protestant church services
2 : a government official at the head of a section of government activities
  • minister of education
3 : a person who represents his or her government in a foreign country

2

minister

verb

Definition of minister for Students

ministered; ministering
: to give help or care
  • minister to the sick


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