Sacraments of Initiation

Baptism

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Through Baptism we are provided God’s saving grace and claimed by God – we are brought before the Lord in humility and love.  The sacrament of baptism begins our faith journey by ushering us into the divine life, cleansing us from sin, and initiating us as members of the Christian community. It is the foundation for the sacramental life.  As the Christian community, we help to mold and shape those who are baptized supporting the families by welcoming them into the community and encouraging them in their faith journey.

Eucharist

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In the Eucharist – the source and the summit as Pope John Paul referred to it – we are fed and exposed to the epitome of humility. Christ is the epitome of humility – he gave fully of himself and made himself present that he might be consumed fully.  He invites all – he rejects no one – he offers himself totally with no guarantee of payback -he disposes grace in his very presence for our salvation.  The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. (CCC 1324).  The Eucharist is our nourishment for our journey of faith.  Receiving the Eucharist changes us. It signifies and effects the unity of the community and serves to strengthen the Body of Christ.

Confirmation

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In Confirmation – we claim the faith as our own reconfirming what was done in baptism and accepting the responsibility to follow God’s will.  Confirmation completes the Sacraments of Initiation into the Church.  “Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit in order to root us more deeply in the divine filiation, incorporate us more firmly into Christ, strengthen our bond with the Church, associate us more closely with her mission, and help us bear witness to the Christian faith in words accompanied by deeds.” (CCC 1316)

At confirmation we receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit and confirm our baptismal promises. Greater awareness of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conferred through the anointing of chrism oil and the laying on of hands by the Bishop.  Through the Sacrament of Confirmation we renew our baptismal promises and commit to living a life of maturity in the Christian faith.

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Sacraments of Healing

Reconcilliation

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In Reconciliation we come before the Lord and the church in humility acknowledging our sins and weaknesses, accepting God’s forgiving grace, and recommitting to our baptismal and confirmation promises.  Our relationship with God and the Church is damaged by the sins we commit.  We all are called to confess our sins that we commit and that we have a conversion of our heart that we might return to perfect union with God and the Church.  

Through confession of our sins to a priest, who standing in the place of Christ forgives us for our sins, our hearts begin a journey of conversion and a return to God through the grave of His mercy.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is also called the sacrament of conversion, confession, or penance.  God is rich in mercy, and reception of this sacrament returns us to communion with God after having lost it through sin.

Annointing of the Sick

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In the Anointing of the Sick God’s healing grace is given to us as we again recognize his eternal love and submit ourselves to his will and plan for our lives and our deaths in anticipation of eternal life. By the sacred anointing of the sick and the prayer of the priests the whole Church commends those who are ill to the suffering and glorified Lord, that he may raise them up and save them.  Anyone who is struggling with illness or disease – physical, spiritual or emotional – should consider contacting the parish for the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick.  You may receive this sacrament many times in your life – it is not simply for the dying.  

We read in scripture, “Is anyone among you sick? He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint (him) with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. If he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven”   (James 5: 14-15)

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Sacraments of Vocation

Marraige

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In Marriage, we receive the grace of God, committing to a relationship formed in the likeness of God and his church, committing to put God at the center of our lives and to live a life in conformity with his will.  The sacrament of marriage is a visible sign of God’s love for the Church. When a man and a woman are married in the Church, they receive the grace needed for a lifelong bond of unity.  It is a covenantal in the image of the covenants between God and his people with Abraham and later with Moses at Mt. Sinai. This divine covenant can never be broken. In this way, marriage is a union that bonds spouses together during their entire lifetime

Holy Orders

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In Holy Orders, we receive the grace of God, committing to a relationship formed in the likeness of God and his church, committing to put God at the center of our lives and to live a life in conformity with his will.  A life grounded in love.  A life of service to God’s people – particularly the poor, the sick, the lonely, the outcasts – all those afflicted in this earthly life.  A life in which we humbly submit to God’s will for us.  

“Holy Orders is the sacrament through which the mission entrusted by Christ to his apostles continues to be exercised in the Church until the end of time…It includes three degrees of order: episcopate, presbyterate, and diaconate” (CCC 1536). Deacons, priest and bishops are essential to the Catholic Church because we believe that they continue the work begun by the apostles