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Term:   lay
(1) In contrast to ecclesial or religious (as in 'lay power contrasted with 'religious power').
(2) The identity of the Christian without any further additions. That which pertains to the Christian people.

POS (part of speech). Can be more than one:
     POS 1: Adj/phrase     
     POS 2: ---


Term type ('EntryTerm' if no other applies):
     Type 1: EntryTerm     
     Type 2: ---


Term status:
     for POS 1: General     
     for POS 2: ---
(General=also found outside Salesian usage; Salesian=possibly not well understood beyond Salesian circles; Neologism, Archaic, Deprecated refer to the term's status in Salesian discourse)


Recommended equivalent (it): laico


(In most cases the Italian term will be the official source term. In other cases below, if the term has its source in another language, this will be indicated by an [S] following the term.)


Recommended equivalent (es): laico, seglar


Recommended equivalent (fr): la´c


Recommended equivalent (pt): leigo


Suggested equivalent (other):


Other language:
Language code chosen from IANA registry]




Geographical/Regional usage:


In the 19th century and for a good part of the 20th, throughout the Western world, the concept of 'lay' had a strong accusatory character in reference to Church and religious symbols. This 'lay' tendency was especially marked in France and is still very much present in the French legal system and culture.
Within the ecclesiastical context, 'lay' includes women and men religious who are not priests (not part of the hierarchical structure, therefore). In this case it is a positive concept, and enables us to speak of lay consecrated, the layperson who has marked him or herself in relation to God by a public or ritual act (consecration).
It is worthy of note that this term was used by DB himself, e.g. in the first constitutional text 1858 on the scope of the society. It predates the term coadjutor and in fact in that text is more a reference to what DB called his salesiani esterni (lay people living in the world with his spirit) than it is to coadjutors.


Context (examples of use):


Other notes:
There is also a concept of la´citÚ(French), laicitÓ (Italian), occasionally rendered in English as laicity. The English term is not a happy one! English may prefer 'lay state' but this would not capture the sense of the word as used by Fr Vigan˛ for example. Hence we have to stay with 'laicity'. Fr Vigan˛ offers three levels of meaning to the term - the most general being that of the universal condition of creation, a second level being that of the Church's mission, and the third as a lay form of religious life, the Salesian Brother.
The problem here is that the concept (as understood from French society in particular) is more understood in terms of separation of Church and State, so its application in the ecclesiastical (and Salesian) context is a very restricted one and would not be well understood even by many Salesians.




This section is intended for authorised users to add new information or alter existing information

POS (part of speech). A term may be more than one POS
(1) (2)



Term type ('EntryTerm' if no other applies)
(1) (2)   
[Initialisms like AGC are regarded as acronyms; a term like 'Bro.' is an abbreviation; an example of short form instead would be the main part of a very long book title (most of DB's book titles! 'Giovane Provveduto' is a short form). A loan term is not translated whereas a calque is. A blend is where two (or more) morphemes or 'word' parts have been combined to form a single term, as in the case of 'austraLasia'. Choose variant when there exists at least one other common form of the term. ]


Term status (General=also found outside Salesian usage; Salesian=possibly not well understood beyond Salesian circles; Neologism, Archaic, Deprecated refer to the term's status in Salesian discourse)
(1) (2)   
[Archaic refers to terms that have fallen out of regular use. Deprecated indicates official disapproval or if not disapproval, official abandonment at least. A neologism is a term that has come into play relatively recently - say, since Vatican II, but the time frame can be flexible.]


Recommended equivalent (it). In most cases the Italian term will be the official source term




Recommended equivalent (es)




Recommended equivalent (fr)




Recommended equivalent (pt)




Suggested equivalent (other) (Where it is the source term indicated with [S] and appropriate language code [chosen from IANA registry])






[The definition should not be imagined! It is assumed that it exists either in a reputable dictionary (or at least in similar words) or in some authoritative Salesian reference (e.g. the Constitutions, AGC or similar public document, Lenti's 7 volume series, and so on]




Geographical/Regional usage
[Certain terms are common in restricted parts of the Congregation. We have one 'prior' but only in INB; in some parts of Asia the Salesian community is called a 'convent', but not elsewhere]



[Etymological information, mostly]


Context (examples of use)

[English usage, obviously]  


Other notes
[Room here for more personal observations, private opinion if felt to be useful]


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