The Meaning of Service
Service is a word used constantly. The word service has an impression on many people. For example; people who work as lifeguards view their work as a service to the community. Naturally, based on working as a lifeguard their definition of service would be an action beneficial to the well-being of others. Not surprisingly, a similar definition was found in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED). Service is described in the Oxford English Dictionary as "the action of serving, helping, or benefiting; conduct tending to the welfare or advantage of another; condition or employment of a public servant; friendly or professional assistance." Furthermore, in Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary, service is described as "the occupation or function of serving others; employment as a servant; contribution to the welfare of others.”
The above definitions seem like the only ones for the word service. There are actually at least two more different definitions. The first definition is "service tree" or "service berry." A service tree is "a tree native in continental Europe and cultivated in the British Isles, bearing a small pear-shaped or round fruit edible in an over-ripe condition" (OED). A service berry is "any one of various American trees or shrubs of the genus Amelanchier" (Dictionary of Americanisms). The second definition was one many may not have recognized right away. Service is "public worship according to form and order" (OED). After people read this they think, of course! People are always saying "are you going to attend service on Sunday?" Many immediately think the word service means providing for another and completely forget by attending mass they are performing a service to a higher being.
Becoming so firmly planted in one definition of service people tend to ignore its other uses. A strong attachment to one definition or another can be attributed to working as a lifeguard or work with...