/ben'i dik"sheuhn/, n.
1. an utterance of good wishes.
2. the form of blessing pronounced by an officiating minister, as at the close of divine service.
3. a ceremony by which things are set aside for sacred uses, as a church, vestments, or bells.
4. (usually cap.) Also called Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. a service consisting of prayers, at least one prescribed hymn, censing of the congregation and the Host, and a blessing of the congregation by moving in the form of a cross the ciborium or monstrance containing the Host.
5. the advantage conferred by blessing; a mercy or benefit.
[1400-50; late ME ( < MF) < L benediction- (s. of benedictio). See BENEDICTUS, -ION]

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      a verbal blessing of persons or things, commonly applied to invocations pronounced in God's name by a priest or minister, usually at the conclusion of a religious service. The Aaronic benediction (Num. 6:24–26) was incorporated by Luther (Luther, Martin) into his German Mass and is preserved by modern Lutherans because of its impressive dignity; it is also used in the Mozarabic liturgy of Spain before the reception of the Host. The Swedish liturgy appends a trinitarian formula to this same benediction. Some Christian churches, however, prefer the Pauline benediction (II Cor. 13:14).

      In the Roman Catholic Church (Roman Catholicism) benediction commonly means a blessing of persons (e.g., the sick) or objects (e.g., religious articles). Benediction of the blessed sacrament, a nonliturgical devotional service, has as its central act the blessing of the congregation with the eucharistic Host.

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Universalium. 2010.

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