Definition of charismatic in US English:



  • 1Exercising a compelling charm which inspires devotion in others.

    ‘a charismatic leader’
    • ‘She originally joins the group because of her attraction to its charismatic leader, Andi.’
    • ‘‘He had an aura about him, he was charismatic and he inspired you,’ he said.’
    • ‘He is a very charismatic figure and a very good man, which is why his appeal is so widespread.’
    • ‘His charismatic charm is more than enough reason to watch the movie.’
    • ‘It's not just Australians who have switched on to the charms of this charismatic comedian.’
    • ‘Often, such people can be charming, even charismatic.’
    • ‘You are gregarious, friendly, charming and charismatic.’
    • ‘A charismatic leader, he inspired his troops, Frenchmen and foreigners, with fierce loyalty and devotion.’
    • ‘Perhaps the nation does now need a strong, charismatic and inspiring leader to help it make sense of all the uncertainty and seize the opportunity to make a statement of identity.’
    • ‘At home, there is a charismatic new leader to charm and intrigue us.’
    • ‘There is no other person in Scottish history who really compares to him as a multi-faceted warrior, leader and charismatic figure.’
    • ‘Keith is charming and very charismatic, but not reliable.’
    • ‘Cantona was never one to berate or cajole teammates, but on the pitch or training ground he was a huge, charismatic figure who inspired fellow players.’
    • ‘It was the charismatic crowd-pleaser who charmed the British public and won two massive election victories for a Labour Party that had almost given up hope of ever seeing power again.’
    • ‘These shifts in his personality explain why he is both a compelling and charismatic leader while also getting involved in so many criminal enterprises.’
    • ‘That was the excessively charming, charismatic Catherine O'Connor.’
    • ‘Her paper was inspired by a charismatic speaker she had heard.’
    • ‘No doubt about it, she is an inspiring, charismatic figure as most people come to appreciate very quickly once they meet her.’
    • ‘An inspirational teacher and leader, her charismatic personality has endeared her to generations of children as she encouraged the very best from each and every one of them.’
    • ‘Such leaders are often charismatic figures who compel by sheer force of personality.’
    charming, fascinating, full of personality, strong in character
    View synonyms
  • 2Relating to the charismatic movement in the Christian Church.

    • ‘The three uniting congregations were an Independent Holiness Church, a charismatic House Church, and a Brethren Assembly.’
    • ‘He got started at 20, when his local charismatic Christian church told him he didn't have enough experience for conventional missions.’
    • ‘The other day I received an email asking me how I would differentiate between evangelicals, fundamentalists, and charismatic Christians.’
    • ‘Holy Trinity Brompton was the main UK source of the Toronto Blessing and ‘holy laughter’ phenomenon that swept through charismatic churches some years ago.’
    • ‘Being a charismatic church, the proceedings went along as usual.’
    • ‘Most were Roman Catholic, but many belonged to fundamentalist or charismatic Protestant churches.’
    • ‘In Queens a few hundred Colombian Americans led by a Colombian priest established a church based on charismatic Catholicism.’
    • ‘First, the fastest growing sectors of American Christianity were the charismatic, Pentecostal, and fundamentalist churches.’
    • ‘The Catholic Church, and evangelical and charismatic Protestant Churches are, likewise, targets of criticism.’
    • ‘He remained deeply religious, though, and when he came for appointments would talk of the happenings at his charismatic church.’
    • ‘Although she tried out different denominations when at university, and attended a charismatic church, her experiences of the Methodist church were narrow when she returned to it.’
    • ‘Devoid of the ceremony and liturgy associated with the Church of England, charismatic itinerants made a straightforward appeal.’
    • ‘I plunged myself into a charismatic Baptist church, because I was seeking emotional and affective expression.’
    • ‘Some Christians seek a more emotional form of religious worship and turn to charismatic Christianity and other movements that stress a personal response to Jesus.’
    • ‘Her family are charismatic Christians, which means they stand up in church, clapping and singing.’
    • ‘Those that don't fit into that category include chaplains from charismatic and other evangelical churches.’
    • ‘We Calvinists are charismatic Christians because we love the Lord Christ who first loved us.’
    • ‘Some of the students have paid a considerable price for introducing Reformed doctrines and orderly worship into what were once charismatic churches.’
    • ‘Gateway is a charismatic evangelical church with lively worship and a good range of ages in the congregation.’
    • ‘St Thomas's is an evangelical, charismatic church, and, as such, believes that the Bible is God's word and direction for living.’
    1. 2.1 (of a power or talent) divinely conferred.
      ‘charismatic prophecy’
      • ‘Women and men with charismatic powers to heal and contact God originate and lead their own sects.’
      • ‘Practicing charismatic prophecy, many of Montanus's followers were women, who were allowed to teach, heal, and exorcise demons.’
      • ‘In an earlier discussion, I described Charismatic prophecy as a kind of "inspired oral poetry."’
      • ‘In ancient Egypt, charismatic prophecy apparently was not commonplace, if it occurred at all, though institutional prophecy was of the greatest importance.’


  • 1An adherent of the charismatic movement.

    • ‘Finally, the charismatics serve as another group that manifests the Pentecostal impulse, but who stay embedded in their home denominations instead of breaking away.’
    • ‘However, even the less collectively oriented charismatics agreed that the best way to live their lives was by trying to make a difference in the world.’
    • ‘Individual charismatics, even relative newcomers, easily surmised what was expected of them in the way of belief and conduct, and there was no shortage of cues to help them along.’
    • ‘It could be that more educated charismatics believe that educated people in general look down upon charismatic practices in churches.’
    • ‘He continued: ‘Don't just overreact to what charismatics or Roman Catholics or high church Anglicans do.'’
    • ‘Gumbel, like all charismatics, insists that receiving the Holy Spirit is a separate act from conversion.’
    • ‘The conference speakers include evangelicals, charismatics, and fundamentalists and are almost a ‘Who's Who’ of male evangelicals.’
    • ‘Today, almost 525 million people around the world identify themselves as Pentecostals or charismatics.’
    • ‘I, myself, am a charismatic in that I attend churches that promote the use of Spiritual gifts.’
    • ‘Within Protestantism, numerical growth and spiritual dynamism seem to have migrated to evangelicals, Pentecostals and charismatics, especially in non-Western countries.’
    • ‘The final section on lay spirituality is a pastiche of elements from a number of sources (the charismatics, monastic renewal, and others).’
    • ‘The question of the relation between women's social power and women's access to spiritual power came out of my research on Catholic charismatics.’
    • ‘Center stage is now occupied by Pentecostals, charismatics, evangelicals, fundamentalists, conservative Baptists and Lutherans, and select Roman Catholic writers and movements.’
    • ‘‘It is more than evangelicals, fundamentalists, charismatics and Pentecostals,’ Rove said.’
    • ‘But Reed enjoyed less success in constructing a broad-based conservative coalition: white Protestant charismatics, fundamentalists, and evangelicals dominated his organization.’
    • ‘Theissen's tertiary charismatics, community sympathizers in the villages, did not abandon their traditional way of life; they remained in their homes, and adhered to traditional household norms and values.’
    • ‘It was not long before charismatic influences penetrated the Roman Catholic Church, and Catholic charismatics were embraced by other charismatics as bona fide brethren on the basis of a shared ‘spiritual’ experience.’
    1. 1.1 A person who claims divine inspiration.
      • ‘Cepeda and his charismatics took advantage of the spiritual vacuum to grow their own movement.’
      • ‘In his youth, Machiavelli had watched Savonarola from afar; the great religious charismatic was both anti-Renaissance and opposed to the new merchant class that was emerging.’
      • ‘This article will further buttress John D. Hannah's recent claim that contemporary charismatics are misappropriating Edwards's theology as they seek to justify prophecy as a continuing gift for today.’
      • ‘This, to Horsley, disproves Theissen's hypothesis of wandering charismatics.’
      • ‘Godboo is a true charismatic, with a physical presence that makes him the focus of every eye.’
      • ‘He looks at the essentials of what we really can say about Jesus with any degree of historical certainty, and places him in the context of the wandering charismatics and faith healers who were about at the time.’
      • ‘According to Theissen Jesus recruited secondary charismatics, both men and women.’
      • ‘This is not a comment on the influence of charismatics; it is a gloss on normative Christian practice.’
      • ‘But he was instead an apostle, an ad hoc theologian, a proclaimer, a charismatic who saw visions and spoke in tongues - and a religious genius.’
      • ‘If we are charismatics, we will say it is by the currently active gift of prophecy exercised in the worshiping congregation.’


Late 19th century: from Greek kharisma, kharismat- ‘charisma’, + -ic.