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Frequently Asked Questions
regarding
THE MEANING OF
A "PRIEST" VERSUS A "PRESBYTER."


Q. 1. Is a priest and presbyter the same thing or different positions?

A. 1. When reading the New Testament, such as Acts 20:17-38, "bishop" and "presbyter" are understood to be the same office. At the same time, it should be understood that the English word "priest" is derived from the Greek word "presbuteros," which is commonly rendered into Bible English as "elder" or "presbyter."

Therefore, the words "priest," "elder" and "presbyter" are synonym of one another. The Catholic Church has embraced the word "priest" to represent its ministers. This usage of the word "priest" is not the same as the title that Jesus holds as the "High Priest."

The word "priest" is also used for the "common priesthood" which represents all the baptised Catholics who do not belong to the ordained clergy.



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