sac·​ra·​ment ˈsa-krə-mənt How to pronounce sacrament (audio)
: a Christian rite (such as baptism or the Eucharist) that is believed to have been ordained by Christ and that is held to be a means of divine grace or to be a sign or symbol of a spiritual reality
: a religious rite or observance comparable to a Christian sacrament
: something likened to a religious sacrament
saw voting as a sacrament of democracy

Examples of sacrament in a Sentence

They stood in line to receive the Sacrament.
Recent Examples on the Web The approach requires no priest, no holy sacrament, no one to intercede with God on the person’s behalf. Dan Horn, The Enquirer, 20 Mar. 2024 In a Catholic diocese, a cathedral serves as the bishop's home church and the site of important religious events for the diocese such as the ordination of new priests and the annual Chrism Mass, where the oils used in sacraments throughout the diocese are blessed, traditionally on Holy Thursday. Claire Reid, Journal Sentinel, 26 Feb. 2024 The consumption of the casualties, so to speak, was portrayed in that 1993 film as a form of Eucharist (a comparison made by at least one of the 16 eventual real-life survivors, in answer to their critics) and the meal as a sacrament. John Anderson, WSJ, 2 Jan. 2024 We’re gathered for a weird communion: to receive the sacraments from the wry cowboy prophet, Bob Weir, to lay roses and skulls before the shrine of St. Jerome Garcia, to fare Dead & Company well. Jeff Weiss, Spin, 21 Aug. 2023 It’s evidenced when boys, and only boys, pass the sacrament as a part of the faith’s most reverent and repeated rite every Sunday, while the girls sit on the chapel benches to await the renewal of covenants at the hands of boys. Gordon Monson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 8 Aug. 2023 Blessings are signposts to the sacraments, not substitutes for them. Madeleine Kearns, National Review, 24 Dec. 2023 But Martin and others interpreted the text as standing permission to hold such services inside Catholic churches, as long as they were framed in ways that avoided a reference to a Catholic sacrament or liturgical ritual. Stefano Pitrelli, Washington Post, 18 Dec. 2023 When Nativity School of Worcester refused to take the flags down, McManus said it could no longer be called a Catholic school, and stripped Nativity of the right to celebrate Mass and the sacraments. Globe Columnist,, 30 Aug. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sacrament.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English sacrement, sacrament, from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French, from Late Latin sacramentum, from Latin, oath of allegiance, obligation, from sacrare to consecrate

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of sacrament was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near sacrament

Cite this Entry

“Sacrament.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


sac·​ra·​ment ˈsak-rə-mənt How to pronounce sacrament (audio)
: a religious act that is a sign or symbol of a spiritual existence
capitalized : blessed sacrament

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