Christian Cyclopedia

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(2d–3d c.). Christian martyr of Rome; patron saint of music, esp. ch. music; according to legend, invented the organ.

Celestial Element.

True body and blood of Jesus Christ present in, with, and under the bread and wine in the Lord's Supper.


1. Branch of Benedictines, originally called Hermits of St. Damian or Hermits of Murrone (Morone), after Pietro di Murrone (became Celestine V 1294), who founded community of hermits on Mount Murrone 1235–38 and Mount Majella 1240–43; Urban IV gave them Benedictine rule. The order spread through It., Fr., Neth., Bohemia, and Ger., but fell victim to the Reformation and the Fr. Revolution.

2. It. reform cong. of spiritual Franciscans who received permission 1294 from Celestine V to live according to the order of St. Francis independently of the mother group. The privilege was revoked 1302 by Boniface VIII. Remnants of the order went to Narbonne, Fr.


(Caelestius; Coelestius; 5th c.). Advocate at Rome whom Pelagius* persuaded to give up secular pursuits. In opposition to the low morality of their day, Celestius and Pelagius emphasized individual responsibility and free will. Celestius taught innocence of newborn infants. His teachings were condemned by Councils of Carthage (412) and Ephesus (431).


Obligation not to marry or to use marriage rights. The idea that celibacy was more perfect and holy than marriage may have roots in Jewish (Essenes,* Therapeutae*) and pagan conceptions. The notion is present in the apocryphal Acts of Paul and Tekla. Many Christians soon looked for this “perfection” in their pastors and gave preference to unmarried pastors. The first Council of Nicaea* refused to prohibit the marriage of clergy. The Syn. of Gangra* raised its voice against those who refused to accept the ministrations of married clerics. In the W the Syn. of Elvira* required bps., priests, and all who served the altar to live in continence even if married. Siricius forbade the marriage of priests 386. Later popes and councils of the W confirmed this edict. For 600 yrs. the priesthood struggled openly and in secret against celibacy. Rome regarded clerical wives as concubines and their children as bastards. The Syn. of Pavia* 1018 (1022 passed severe judgment against them. Gregory VII took decisive action against the marriage of priests. (See Popes, 7). He upheld the principle that a married priest who said mass and a layman who took Communion from him be excommunicated. When married priests opposed Gregory's enactments, he incited the nobility and people against them. Severe penalties were imposed on those who did not conform.

The Reformation called attention to the vicious results of celibacy (AC XXIII; Ap XXIII). Emp. Ferdinand and the rulers of Fr., Bavaria, and Poland asked the Council of Trent* to consider the repeal of celibacy. It decreed: “If anyone says that clerics constituted in sacred orders … can contract marriage, and that, contracted, it is valid … let him be anathema” (Sess. XXIV, canon 9); “If anyone says … that it is not better and more blessed to remain in virginity or celibacy than to be united in matrimony, let him be anathema” (ib. canon 10). It made special rules regarding “illegitimate sons of clerics” (Sess. XXV, Decree Concerning Reform, ch. 15). RC arguments for celibacy were based on Mt 19:11, 12; 1 Co 7:25, 26, 38, 40.

See also Asceticism.

H. C. Lea, History of Sacerdotal Celibacy in the Christian Church (New York, 1957); O. Hardman, The Ideals of Asceticism (New York, 1924); E. C. Butler, “Monasticism,” in Cambridge Medieval History, ed. H. M. Gwatkin and J. P. Whitney, I (New York, 1924), 521–542.


Chapel erected in early Christian times in cemeteries, chiefly for commemorating the dead.

Cellarius, Johannes

(Keller; Kellner; 1496–1542). Prof. Heb. Wittenberg and Leipzig; pastor Frankfurt, where he introduced proper administration of the Lord's Supper, with part of the service in Ger.; 1st Luth. supt. Dresden; staunch supporter of the Luth. Reformation.

Cellerier, Jacob Elisée

(1785–1862). Prof. oriental languages Geneva; mem. Geneva consistory; advocated modified liberal Calvinism.


(2d c.). Platonist philos.; opponent of Christianity. Wrote Alethes logos (True Word), known through Origen's reply Kata Kelsou (Contra Celsum).

Celtic Church.

1. Many facts regarding the Celtic Ch. have been brought to light in the 20th c. It was once regarded as a half-mythical organization, whose true hist. was obscured by traditions and contradictions. Careful hist. research has revealed a religious organization of great influence and of almost unmatched miss. achievement. It played an important role in the evangelization not only of the Brit. Isles, but of Gaul, Switz., and even It. and the Germanic lands.

2. Martin (ca. 315–ca. 399); bp. Tours; a founder of the Celtic Ch.; had little sympathy with Lat. Christianity; est. monastery at Ligugé and a Celtic miss. training school near Tours; the latter was called Logo-Tigiac (“bright white house”). A great opponent of Arians, Martin was flogged by order of the magistrates of Milan for speaking out against Arianism. See also Church Year, 17; Wales.

3. Ninian (ca. 360–ca. 432); one of Martin's most famous pupils; b. Pictland (now Scot.); educ. Tours; sent by Martin to Pictland; est. miss. training school (Celtic muinntir, “community”), called Candida Casa (Lat. “bright white house”), at Whithorn, SW Scot., ca. 397; trained hundreds of missionaries who went throughout the Brit. Isles.

4. Piran (ca. 352–ca. 430; some say a c. later). Irish Pict; est. a ch. and training center at Perranzabuloe, Cornwall; trained men who were then sent on preaching tours throughout W Eng. and Cornwall. Ruins of his ch. were discovered 1835.

5. Patrick.* Celtic, not RC, miss. to Ireland; built on foundations laid by Ninian's missionaries.

6. Finbar (ca. 490–578); Irish Pict; est. training school at Maghbile, Ulster; sent missionaries to Britain; founded colony and churches at Dornoch; friend of Comgall. Cainnech (ca. 515–600); Irish Pict; labored as miss. among W Picts and in Pictland of Alba; est. training center at Achadh-Bo, Ireland. Ferghil; trained by Cainnech; miss. to Salzburg. Kentigern (Celtic for “High Lord”; also called Mungo, i. e., “the beloved one”; ca. 518–603); miss. in Scot. Traditionally the 1st bp. of Glasgow. Petrock (fl. ca. 550); Celtic miss. to Cornwall and probably Devon.

7. Columba (ca. 521–597). B. Donegal; d. Iona*; Celtic miss.; “Apostle of Caledonia”; est. training school on lone 563; sent missionaries to Britain and the Continent; founded Gaidhealic Ch., which succeded Pictish Ch.; built on foundations laid by Ninian, Piran, Patrick, and others. See also Symbolism, Christian, 4.

8. Comgall the Great (ca. 516–ca. 601). Famous preacher; est. training center at Bangor, SE Northern Ireland, on S side of entrance to Belfast Lough. Those trained include Columban,* Gall,* Maelrubha,* and Moluag.*

9. Other Celtic leaders were Aidan,* Dewi,* Drostan,* Kilian,* and Servanus.*

10. The Celtic Ch. fl. 4th–9th c. It long antedated the Lat. Ch. in N Eur. and was a powerful rival of Rome. Its date of Easter was different; it rejected the Roman type of tonsure, knew nothing of bps. as the Lat. Ch. understood them, rejected the jurisdiction of the pope, and knew nothing of the worship of Mary, intercession of saints, purgatory, transubstantiation, Communion in one kind, and other typical Roman traditions.

11. Perhaps the most notable characteristic of the Celtic Ch. was its fiery miss. zeal. It maintained a far-flung chain of muinntirs, which were miss. training schools. Here men were trained who made their way throughout the Brit. Isles and to the Continent, reaching places as far away as Austria, S Ger., Switz., and Italy. They were missioners, not pastors. They made little attempt to found permanent congs., but were content to be “awakeners,” going two by two on lengthy preaching tours. Each great training center maintained a dozen or more communities where a “family” of preachers lived and from which they went out on their preaching missions.

12. The Celtic Ch. has a multitude of “saints,” but in the old Celtic languages this word means merely “cleric” or “missionary,” nothing more. The Celts did not canonize their noted men; nor did they dedicate their chs. to apostles, martyrs, or noted leaders. The Celtic Ch. was composed of several divisions, the more important of which were the Brito-Pictish Ch., the Iro-Pictish Ch., and the Ch. of the Gaidheals. The Picts and the Gaidheals regarded each other as erring groups.

13. The older accounts of the Celtic Ch. present a maze of contradictions and anachronisms; this led many to declare that its true hist. was lost beyond recovery. But considerable progress has been made by a group of careful historians. A. Macbain, W. D. Simpson, A. R. MacEwen, and A. B. Scott deserve special mention. These and others have made available an abundance of material on the Celtic Ch. and have done much to purge it of the thick veneer of legend, idle speculation, and confusion that until recently obscured its true hist. The Transactions of the Gaelic Society of Inverness also furnish much material.

14. The Celtic Ch. is important for its great miss. achievements and its ev. character. Its hist. fills in what was once a strange gap of 450 yrs. bet. the end of the apostolic and patristic era and the time of the rise in influence of the RC Ch. Many famous MSS of the NT were due to the industry of Celtic scribes, to whom we owe the preservation of such treasures as the Muratorian Fragment, the Codex Boernerianus, and the Codex Sangallensis. FRW

See also Cerne, Book of; Culdees; Druids.

A. B. Scott, The Pictish Nation: Its People and Its Church (Edinburgh, 1918) and St. Ninian, Apostle of the Britons and Picts (Edinburgh, 1916); W. D. Simpson, Saint Ninian and the Origins of the Christian Church in Scotland (Edinburgh, 1940), The Historical Saint Columba, 2d ed. (Aberdeen, 1927), and The Celtic Church in Scotland (Aberdeen, 1935); N. Chadwick, Celtic Britain (New York, 1963); M. Anderson, St. Ninian: Light of the Celtic North (London, 1964); F. R. Webber, A History of Preaching in Britain and America, I (Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1952), pp. 29–108.


(Gk. koimeterion, “sleeping place”). Burial ground. The Gk. word originally was used exclusively of Christian burial places. RC, Luth., and other chs. have endeavored to have their own cemeteries, usually restrictively or primarily for their own members.

Cennick, John

(1718–55). Eng. hymnist; appointed by J. Wesley to teach in a school for colliers' children, Kingswood; joined Moravian Ch. 1745; deacon London 1749.


(from Gk. koinos bios, “common life”). Monks living together under a common rule (distinguished from hermits*).

Center for Reformation Research.

Organized 1957 as the Foundation for Reformation Research under leadership of Herbert W. Knopp and Alfred O. Fuerbringer by a group of faculty and bd. mems. of Conc. Sem., St. Louis, Missouri, who secured a charter from the State of Missouri to found a nonprofit corporation 1. to collect and preserve historical source material pertaining to the Protestant Reformation and related areas of the history of the Christian Church; 2. to make such material available to interested students and scholars through the establishment of a library and research center; 3. to stimulate historical research concerning the Protestant Reformation and to publish the results of such historical research; 4. to accept gifts, bequests, and devises of real and personal property, which property or the income therefrom shall be used solely to carry out the purposes set forth above and to hold, invest, and administer funds held by the Center for such purposes.

The library bldg. is at 6477 San Bonita, Clayton, Missouri 63105. Micro-duplicated holdings cover a broad representation of 15th and 16th c. titles and many MSS Most materials are Lat. and Ger., with a growing percentage of Fr., Eng., It., and Scand. languages. Special collections include works of 16th c. figures whose complete works have not appeared in modern critical eds. (e.g., J. Brenz,* J. H. Bullinger,* M. Bucer,* M. Flacius* Illyricus) and hist. collections (e.g., Political Archives of Philip* of Hesse and parts of the Sammlung of J. J. Simler*).

The Foundation is the nat. office of the Soc. for Reformation Research and the 16th Century Studies Conference.

The Foundation conducts an institute each summer to give special instructions in historiographical skills, e.g., paleography, bibliography, and philology as related to the Reformation. AOF

Central Agency for Foreign Missions.

Est. 1883 by bps. of the Ch. of Eng. to receive special funds for for. missions.

Central America.

A. H istoric Formation. Before gaining indep. from Spain, Cen. Am. was divided into pol. areas which today comprise the 5 reps., viz., the captaincy gen. of Guatemala and the dependent divisions of Chiapas, San Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, and Costa Rica. During the colonial period, sections of the Caribbean coast in Honduras and Nicaragua were settled by Eng. buccaneers. In 1786 Sp. recognized Brit. sovereignty over Belize (Brit. Honduras). After gaining indep. from Sp. in 1821, Chiapas became part of Mexico. The 5 other provinces eventually split into the present nations of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. Panama, which occupies the remainder of the isthmus, was part of Colombia till 1903, when it declared its independence. Though not technically part of Cen. Am., Panama is usually considered together with the other 5 reps. because of its geog. and economic similarities.

B. Inhabitants. Indians, chiefly of Mayan background, concentrated mostly in Guatemala; Mestizos, people of mixed Indian and Sp. blood; Negroes, settled along Caribbean coast; Europeans and North Americans, immigrants residing chiefly in larger cities; Orientals, forming small colonies in urban areas.

C. Social and Political Aspects. After gaining indep. 1821, the 5 reps. passed through periods of violent revolution and enforced calm under strong dictators. Since WW II there has been an awakened sense of soc. responsibility, with solutions for regional problems sought by more democratic means. Reactionary pressures, both from the conservative right and the extremist left, are still apparent. Panama has had special blessings, as well as problems, because of proximity to the US-operated Canal Zone, a 10-mile-wide concession through which the canal was completed 1914.

D. Religion.

1. The pre-Columbian religions are still in evidence where larger concentrations of Indians hold to their primitive cultures. The Spaniards brought the pre-Reformation RCm of their land. Many of the priests were consecrated men who desired to learn the languages of the Indians and bring them the Gospel. But govt. policies often hindered such work. With the decline of Sp. power the number of priests became very limited. As a result, where the Indian cultures remained strong a type of syncretism developed in which ancient preconquest rites were combined with RC ritual.

2. Eng. Prot. work was begun 1825 by Wesleyans among Negro settlers in Honduras, Costa Rica, and Panama. Anglicans began 1844 in Brit. Honduras. The Moravian miss. among the Indians on the Mosquito (Mosquitia) Coast of Nicaragua dates from 1848. American Presbyterians opened a Sp.-language field in Guatemala 1882 at the invitation of the president. Using CIM as model, C. I. Scofield* founded the Central* Am. Miss. 1890. In the 20th c. many others entered the area, esp. since WW I.

3. Lutheranism came with Ger. settlers at end of 19th c. The first attempt to form a Luth. cong. in Guatemala was made 1908. The Ger. pastor also visited Luth. settlers in other neighboring countries. During both World Wars this work was disrupted. ln 1947 LCMS, on invitation by the people, sent the first N. Am. miss. to Guatemala to work among scattered Germans in Guatemala City, to serve Eng.-speaking Negroes in Puerto Barrios (since the Anglicans had withdrawn during WW II), and to initiate Sp. work in the rural area surrounding Zacapa. After 1950 the staff was augmented and the work extended into the other republics. In 1941 a Luth. miss. was formally opened in the Canal Zone to serve N Americans stationed there. By 1957 under the auspices of the Armed Services Commission of LCMS this parish also included work in Spanish in the Rep. of Panama. The only other Luth. effort in Cen. Am. is centered in Costa Rica, where a pastor has worked in cooperation with LWF since 1958 to serve Ger.-speaking Luths. in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, and El Salvador.

E. Rep. of Guatemala. Area: 42,042 sq. mi. Most RC Largest Prot. group is the Ev. Ch. in Guatemala, which grew chiefly out of efforts of the Cen. Am. Miss. and has its Bible School and headquarters there. Others in descending order of membership: Ch. of God (Cleveland, Tennessee); United Presb. Ch.; Assemblies of God; Seventh-day Adv.; Ch. of the Nazarene; S Bap. Conv.; Soc. of Friends; Ch. of God of Prophecy. LCMS works in several areas. Guatemala City is also headquarters for the Caribbean Miss. Dist. of LCMS, with a resident counselor and bus. mgr. Also stationed there is the dir. for theol. studies, who supervises the preparation of nat. pastors through an in-service training program. The Luth. Hour office for Cen. Am. is in Antigua.

F. Rep. of El Salvador. Area: ca. 8,100 sq. mi. Most RC Largest Prot. groups are Pentecostals and Assemblies of God. Others follow in size: Cen. Am. Miss.; Ch. of God (Cleveland, Tennessee); Am. Bap. Home Miss. Societies; Seventh-day Adv.; Nat. Bap. Conv.; Soc. of Friends. The Luth. missions under LCMS began 1951.

G. Rep. of Honduras. Area: 43,277 sq. mi. Most RC Among Prots., Meth. miss. is largest, followed by Seventh-day Adv. and Ch. of God (Cleveland, Tennessee). Others are the Moravians, United Ch. of Christ, Assemblies of God, Christian Missions in Many Lands, and 12 other groups. LCMS stationed the first resident miss. 1963 to serve scattered village groups.

H. Rep. of Nicaragua. Area: ca. 57,000 sq. mi.; RCm predominates. Among Prots., the Moravian miss. is largest followed by Am. Bap. Home Miss. Societies, Nat. Bap. Conv., Assemblies of God, Seventh-day Adv., Ch. of the Nazarene, Cen. Am. Miss., and LWF ;Ger. cong.

I. Rep. of Costa Rica. Area: ca. 19,650 sq. mi. RCm predominates. Among Prots., the Prot. Episc. Ch., whose bp. for Cen. Am. resides in San Jose, the capital, has the largest following. Next are Seventh-day Adv., Lat. Am. Miss. (whose sem. and editorial center is also in San Jose), SPG, S Bap. Conv., Meth. Miss., and LWF Ger. cong. Since 1963 LCMS has a miss. working in Spanish.

J. Rep. Panama. Area: ca. 29,700 sq. mi., RCm predominates. Among Prots., highest membership is reported by Internat. Ch. of the Four-Square Gospel, Prot. Episc. Ch. (bp. in the Canal Zone), Seventh-day Adv., Meth. Miss., Ch. of God (Cleveland, Tennessee), S Bap. Conv., and Union Chs. of the Canal Zone. LCMS's only parish serves both Canal Zone and rep.; the first miss. to work in Spanish took up residence in the Rep. of Panama 1963.

K. Belize (Belice to neighboring countries; formerly Brit. Honduras). In Cen. Am., on the Caribbean Sea; bounded by Guatemala on S and W, by Mex. on NW and N. Area: ca. 8,867 sq. mi. Settled perhaps ca. 1638 by English from Jamaica; became a Brit. colony in the 19th c.; internally self-governing 1964; renamed Belize (from Mayan for “muddy water”) 1973. Ethnic composition: ca. 40% of Afr. descent; others of Lat.-Indian, Eur., and East Indian origin. Official language: English. Religion: RCm predominates. Among Prots., the Angl. Ch. of the Provinces of the W Indies, with a resident bp., is the largest; then follow the Seventh-day Adv., Meth. Ch., Ch. of the Nazarine, and others. RFG

See Missions, Bibliography.

Central American Mission.

Founded 1890 by C. I. Scofield*; began work 1891 in Costa Rica. See also Central America, D 2.

Central China Wesleyan Lay Mission.

Committee that worked under the direction of the Wesleyan* Meth. Miss. Soc.

Central Missionary Society of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the United States.

By 1833 the Ev. Luth. Syn. and Ministerium of North Carolina, the Ev. Luth. Syn. of West Pennsylvania, the Ev. Luth. Syn. of Maryland, and the Ev. Luth. Syn. of Virginia had each est. a miss. soc. In October 1835 the Cen. Miss. Soc. of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in the US was est. at Mechanicsburg, Cumberland Co., Pennsylvania. Purpose: “to send the gospel of the Son of God, to the destitute portions of the Lutheran Church in the United States, by means of missionaries, and by assisting for a season, such congregations of said church as are not yet able to support the gospel, and ultimately to co-operate in sending it to the heathen world.” Socs. in mem. syns. of The General* Syn. of the Ev. Luth. Ch. in the USA became branches of this cen. soc., which by 1836 est. connection with the American* Home Miss. Soc. See also Heyer, Johann Christian Friedrich.


(ca. 140). Syrian Gnostic; according to Hippolytus and Irenaeus, the teacher of Marcion*; held that only the soul will be raised.


Cloth treated with wax and placed on altar to prevent soiling of linen cloths above.

Ceremonies in the Lutheran Church.

See Adiaphora; Adiaphoristic Controversies; Agenda; Liturgics; articles on individual liturgical acts (e.g., Baptism, Liturgical; Lord's Supper).

Cerne, Book of.

Collection of nonliturgical, chiefly Celtic,* prayers dating from 8th–9th c.

Certainty, Religious.

A true believer can be certain of his salvation. The faith that justifies is itself a certainty of salvation; its essence is “a being sure of God's grace in Christ Jesus” (fiducia cordis), Heb 11:1; Jn 3:36; Ro 4:20, 21; Eph 2:5; 4:30; 2 Ti 1:12. ln Introduction to Romans Luther defines faith as “a living, moving confidence in God's grace” (WA-DB 7, 10). It is an indication of a weak faith when a Christian has doubts and feels uncertain that he is in a state of grace and will be saved. See Luther, WA 12, 386–399; 10 Ia, 331; Ap IV 322–355. See also Apologetics, III B; Assurance.

A. Kurz, Die Heilsgewissheit bei Luther (Güterslob, 1933); J. T. Mueller, “Die Heilsgewissheit nach der Konkordienformel,” CTM, V (March 1934), 172 to 178.


It. name for Carthusian* religious house, esp. as developed at Pavia and Florence.

Cesarini, Julian

(1398–1444). Cardinal; papal legate in Ger. 1431, Hungary 1442. Influential at Ferrara-Florence Council.

Ceylon and India General Mission.

Founded in Scot. 1893; fields include Pakistan.

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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Content Reproduced with Permission

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