Papal Definition

(Latin: definire, to enclose within limits)

A solemn and irrevocable decision emanating from the supreme teaching authority of the Church (the pope by his own authority or as presiding over an Æcumenical Council), concerning a matter of faith and morals, and made binding on all the faithful. The object of a definition may be either a doctrine revealed by God, and contained in the deposit of faith, which the Church has the duty to guard and propose authoritatively; or it may be a truth not so revealed but intimately bound up with revealed doctrine. Such definitions demand the unconditional adherence of every member of the Church.

New Catholic Dictionary

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