\ ˈprēst How to pronounce priest (audio) \

Definition of priest

: one authorized to perform the sacred rites of a religion especially as a mediatory agent between humans and God specifically : an Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, or Roman Catholic clergyman ranking below a bishop and above a deacon

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Examples of priest in a Sentence

He was ordained as a Roman Catholic priest. searched for a priest who could perform an exorcism
Recent Examples on the Web Joseph D’Avanzo, Father Jones’s lawyer, denied all of the allegations and refused to discuss the priest’s whereabouts. New York Times, "A Vanishing Priest, a Wall of Secrecy and a 25-Year-Old Abuse Case," 30 Jan. 2021 Asare-Dankwah officiated the funeral and, during his homily, made remarks about the plaintiff, who hadn’t seen the priest in more than a decade, the suit claims. Ramon Antonio Vargas | Staff Writer,, "Archdiocese suspends pastor of St. Peter Claver after he is accused of child rape in lawsuit," 27 Jan. 2021 Sunday's statement from Pfleger's lawyers said the younger brother wrote a letter to Pfleger last month asking the priest for $20,000. Michael Tarm, Star Tribune, "Brothers accuse prominent Chicago priest of sexual abuse," 25 Jan. 2021 Another account points to a priest from the same period who was jailed for helping Christians escape brutal Roman prisons. Jill Gleeson, Country Living, "12 Valentine's Day Facts That Are Anything But Trivial," 21 Jan. 2021 And there was the Capitol Hill priest who, missing his congregants, has taken to strolling his neighborhood and ministering to police officers guarding the Capitol. Paul Schwartzman, Washington Post, "A city under siege," 15 Jan. 2021 Father Suchowolec, the priest in the parish where Bucko was baptized, was also killed. Fred Bahnson, Harpers Magazine, "The Gate of Heaven Is Everywhere," 5 Jan. 2021 Researchers in the United Kingdom re-created the sound by 3D printing a voice box after scanning the priest's mummified remains. Katie Hunt, CNN, "Science's most fascinating and awe-inspiring discoveries in 2020," 29 Dec. 2020 Finley is at least the fifth Oakland priest to be removed from his post in recent years, according to a review by the advocacy group SNAP, or Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. Megan Cassidy,, "Oakland priest ousted for alleged ‘boundary violations’ with man," 24 Dec. 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for priest

Middle English preist, from Old English prēost, ultimately from Late Latin presbyter — more at presbyter

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Time Traveler for priest

Time Traveler

The first known use of priest was before the 12th century

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Statistics for priest

Last Updated

18 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Priest.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for priest



English Language Learners Definition of priest

: a person who has the authority to lead or perform ceremonies in some religions and especially in some Christian religions


\ ˈprēst How to pronounce priest (audio) \

Kids Definition of priest

: a person who has the authority to lead or perform religious ceremonies

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