ordain

verb
or·​dain | \ ȯr-ˈdān How to pronounce ordain (audio) \
ordained; ordaining; ordains

Definition of ordain

transitive verb

1 : to invest (see invest entry 2 sense 1) officially (as by the laying on of hands) with ministerial or priestly authority was ordained as a priest
2a : to establish or order by appointment, decree, or law : enact we the people … do ordain and establish this ConstitutionU.S. Constitution
b : destine, foreordain It is futile to try to avoid what destiny has ordained.

intransitive verb

: to issue an order so the gods have ordained

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Other Words from ordain

ordainer noun
ordainment \ ȯr-​ˈdān-​mənt How to pronounce ordainment (audio) \ noun

Examples of ordain in a Sentence

She is an ordained minister. The process was ordained by law.
Recent Examples on the Web The second-most contested proposal concerned ordaining women deacons, a type of ministry in the church that allows for preaching, celebrating weddings and baptisms, but not consecrating the Eucharist. Nicole Winfield, Anchorage Daily News, "Pope’s Amazon synod proposes married priests, female leaders," 27 Oct. 2019 And Anglican priests who convert and are ordained in the Catholic Church can remain married. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, "Catholic Bishops Back Ordination of Married Men as Priests in Amazon Region, a Milestone," 26 Oct. 2019 Catholic Diocese of Lexington communications director Don Clemmer says Carter was removed as vocations director of the diocese last month following the first allegation, which Clemmer says dates back to when Carter was ordained seven years ago. Shannon Hall, The Courier-Journal, "Catholic priest resigns as pastor of church after 2 allegations of inappropriate contact," 19 Oct. 2019 Then, this: A win that was anything but pre-ordained, despite the clear advantage the Americans held in raw speed. Washington Post, "Hanging on: US sets past aside, wins men’s 4x100 gold medal," 6 Oct. 2019 Much of the starting lineup, assuming everyone is healthy, seems ordained: Flynn and Feagin in the backcourt, Wetzell at the 4, Mensah at the 5. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Five questions for SDSU basketball as preseason practice begins," 25 Sep. 2019 The archdiocese said Marcotte was ordained in June 2014. Vic Ryckaert, Indianapolis Star, "Suspended priest charged in Hamilton County sexual abuse case," 7 Aug. 2019 The second-most contested proposal concerned ordaining women deacons, a type of ministry in the church that allows for preaching, celebrating weddings and baptisms, but not consecrating the Eucharist. Nicole Winfield, USA TODAY, "Catholic bishops' historic proposal: Allow married men as priests in remote Amazon regions," 26 Oct. 2019 Flynn was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Albany in 1960. Deanna Weniger, Twin Cities, "Mourners gather to pay respects to Archbishop Harry J. Flynn, 1933-2019, in St. Paul," 30 Sep. 2019

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

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First Known Use of ordain

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for ordain

Middle English ordeinen, from Anglo-French ordener, ordeiner, from Late Latin ordinare, from Latin, to put in order, appoint, from ordin-, ordo order

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Time Traveler for ordain

Time Traveler

The first known use of ordain was in the 14th century

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Statistics for ordain

Last Updated

29 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Ordain.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ordain?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=o&file=ordain01. Accessed 11 December 2019.

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More Definitions for ordain

ordain

verb
How to pronounce ordain (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ordain

: to officially make (someone) a minister, priest, rabbi, etc.
formal : to officially establish or order (something)

ordain

verb
or·​dain | \ ȯr-ˈdān How to pronounce ordain (audio) \
ordained; ordaining

Kids Definition of ordain

1 : decree entry 2 It was ordained by law.
2 : to make a person a Christian minister or priest by a special ceremony

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More from Merriam-Webster on ordain

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ordain

Spanish Central: Translation of ordain

Nglish: Translation of ordain for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ordain for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ordain

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