A rite or ritual is an established, ceremonial, usually religious,
act. Rites in this sense fall into three major categories:
rites of passage, generally changing an individual's social status,
such as marriage, adoption, baptism, coming of age, graduation, or
communal rites, whether of worship, where a community comes together
to worship, such as Jewish synagogue or Mass, or of another character,
such as fertility rites and certain non-religious festivals;
rites of personal devotion, where an individual worships, including
prayer and pilgrimages such as the
Muslim Hajj, pledges of allegiance,
or promises to wed someone.
3 See also
Main article: Christian liturgy
Lutheran pastor administers the rite of confirmation on youth
confirmands after instructing them in Luther's Small Catechism.
Within many Protestant Christian denominations, the word rite is used
for important ceremonies that are not considered sacraments or
39 Articles of the
Anglican Communion and the Articles
of Religion of the Methodist Church state "there are two Sacraments
ordained of Christ our Lord in the Gospel, that is to say,
the Supper of the Lord". As such, in the Anglican and Methodist
traditions, the following are considered rites: "confirmation,
reconciliation (confessions of sins), matrimony, holy orders and
anointing of the sick". Similarly the "rites of the Moravian Church
are Confirmation, Marriage, and Ordination". In the Lutheran
tradition, Holy Baptism, Holy Eucharist, and Confession &
Absolution are considered
Lutheran sacraments, while Confirmation,
Anointing of the Sick, Holy Matrimony, and
Holy Orders are rites.
Within the Catholic Church, "rite" often refers to what is also called
a sacrament but should refer to the ceremonies associated with the
sacraments, e.g. the
Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. In Roman
Catholicism, for example, the sacrament of
Anointing of the Sick
Anointing of the Sick is
one of the three that are sometimes referred to as "the last rites",
because they are administered to someone who was dying. The other two
are Penance and
Eucharist (administered as
Viaticum in the case of a
dying person). Since the Second Vatican Council, Anointing of the Sick
is administered to those who are seriously ill but not necessarily in
immediate danger of death. The term "rite" became widely used after
the Second Vatican Council. While "rite" is often used synonymously
with "sacrament," it is technically incorrect to say that one received
a "rite" because the sacrament is what is received. The ritual
consists of the prayers and actions that the minister of the sacrament
performs when administering a sacrament. Therefore, it is incorrect to
say that one has received "the last rites" as that person has really
received "the last sacraments" by a minister following a ritual that
has performed the "sacramental rite."
Within both Catholicism and Protestantism, the term "rite" also refers
to a body of liturgical tradition usually emanating from a specific
center. Examples include the Roman Rite, the Byzantine Rite, and the
Sarum Rite. Such rites may include various sub-rites. For example, the
Byzantine Rite has Greek, Russian, and other ethnically-based
variants. For a full list of Christian liturgical rites, see Christian
In addition, the same term was and still is, though less frequently
than before, applied to an autonomous particular Church within the
Catholic Church associated with a particular liturgical tradition. Of
these, the largest is the
Latin Rite or Western Church. There are also
Eastern Catholic Churches
Eastern Catholic Churches or Rites. For a full list of
Catholic liturgical rites, see List of Catholic rites and churches.
In North America, Freemasons have the option of joining the Scottish
Rite or the York Rite, two appendant bodies that offer additional
degrees to those who have taken the basic three.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rites.
Look up rite in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
Rites: a Confucian philosophical concept
Primitive Scottish Rite
Rite of Spring
^ Thirty-Nine Articles, Article XXV
^ Articles of Religion (Methodist), Article XVI
^ Lonsdale, Akasha (2010). Do I Kneel or Do I Bow?: What You Need To
Know When Attending
Religious Occasions. Kuperard. p. 20.
^ "Rites and
Sacraments of the Moravian Church".
Moravian Church of
North America. 2000. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
^ Wilkins, Ronald J. (1984). Religion in North America. Wm. C. Brown,
Religious Education Division. p. 159. ISBN 9780697019301.
Other sacraments of Christian tradition — confirmation, marriage,
and orders — are, for Lutherans, rites of the Church only.
^ What A