par·​ish | \ ˈper-ish, ˈpa-rish\

Definition of parish 

1a(1) : the ecclesiastical unit of area committed to one pastor
(2) : the residents of such an area
b British : a subdivision of a county often coinciding with an original ecclesiastical parish and constituting the unit of local government
2 : a local church community composed of the members or constituents of a Protestant church
3 : a civil division of the state of Louisiana corresponding to a county in other states

Examples of parish in a Sentence

The parish will be getting a new priest soon. The parish has grown significantly in the last three years.

Recent Examples on the Web

The church in Ukraine has been tied to the Moscow Patriarchate for hundreds of years, although many parishes have split off over the past two decades to form a schismatic church. Vladimir Isachenkov, Fox News, "Russian Orthodox Church issues warning to Orthodoxy's leader," 28 Sep. 2018 Building the new church is an extraordinary accomplishment, said George Karas, president of the parish council. Gloria Casas, Elgin Courier-News, "Saint Sophia’s Greek Fest shares sounds, tastes and feel of Greece at Elgin church," 14 July 2018 So much enthusiasm followed the Pope’s encyclical, with parish communities really personalizing the mission to care for creation. Chuck Gibson,, "Catholic communities honored for ‘Care of Our Common Home’," 21 June 2018 Barr said the archdiocese still urges couples to consider their parish church first. Julie Zauzmer, ajc, "Why there are only two places where Catholics can get married outdoors," 11 June 2018 The parish fiesta will continue the celebration from 5-9 p.m. Friday, 4-9 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday. Laura Groch,, "North County Community News, June 7," 7 June 2018 In the spring of 1969, the Black Panther Party established its Free Breakfast Program for local youth at Sacred Heart parish church at the corner of Fell and Fillmore. Shakirah Simley, Bon Appetit, "The Harlem of the West: What’s to Become of The Fillmore?," 6 June 2018 The cause of the leak hasn't been determined, a parish spokesman said. Littice Bacon-blood,, "Gas leak closes River Road at Fashion Blvd. in Hahnville," 5 June 2018 Hundreds of Catholic women priests are quietly leading their own progressive parishes—despite denouncements from the Vatican. Vogue, "Our Favorite Longreads From 2018," 21 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'parish.' 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 parish

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for parish

Middle English parisshe, from Anglo-French paroche, parosse, from Late Latin parochia, from Late Greek paroikia, from paroikos Christian, from Greek, stranger, from para- + oikos house — more at vicinity

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Statistics for parish

Last Updated

10 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for parish

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

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More Definitions for parish



English Language Learners Definition of parish

: an area that has its own local church and priest or minister

: the group of people who go to the church in a particular area

: an area in Louisiana that is like a county


par·​ish | \ ˈper-ish \

Kids Definition of parish

1 : a section of a church district under the care of a priest or minister
2 : the people who attend a particular church
3 : a division in the state of Louisiana that is similar to a county in other states


par·​ish | \ ˈpar-ish \

Legal Definition of parish 

: a civil division of the state of Louisiana corresponding to a county in other states

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More from Merriam-Webster on parish

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with parish

Spanish Central: Translation of parish

Nglish: Translation of parish for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of parish for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about parish

Comments on parish

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a person who helps groups work together

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