clergy

In the Christian church, the clergy is the entire class of religious officials, from priests to pastors to bishops and beyond. If you have a sense that your life path lies in helping others practice their faith, you should go into the clergy

Clergy comes from the word clerk, which in turn comes from cleric. If the only clerks you think of are those that work in shoe stores, think of it this way: when you join the ministry of a church, the idea is that you serve the church. Clergy is the word for all of the clerics combined, and is paired with the laity, which are all the people in the church who aren't in the clergy.

Definitions of clergy
  1. noun
    in Christianity, clergymen collectively (as distinguished from the laity)
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    Antonyms:
    laity, temporalty
    in Christianity, members of a religious community that do not have the priestly responsibilities of ordained clergy
    types:
    pastorate
    pastors collectively
    prelacy, prelature
    prelates collectively
    cardinalate
    cardinals collectively
    type of:
    priesthood
    the body of ordained religious practitioners
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