The exact meaning of recede depends upon its context. For example:
"We can't move back in until the floodwaters recede." — diminish and move away
"Her fear receded." — diminished
"The waves first advance and then recede." — move away
"The news story receded into the background as it was replaced by new stories." — received diminished attention
"a receding hairline" — diminished hair (each year the line where hair stops growing is higher)
The farther we walked from the Meany Granite Company truck, the more the engine noise receded—but it seemed deeper, too, as if it were the motor at the core of the earth, the one that turned the earth and changed day to night.
There are no more uses of "recede" in A Prayer for Owen Meany.