Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sacraments Intro

After realizing that much of the beginning of the Catechism is filled with orthodox, fundamental doctrines of the Church and Christianity, I've decided to move on to the next section: the seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church. Now, as mentioned in an earlier post (see "My Reasons" from Feb.), I think that all seven Sacraments are practiced by both Protestants and Catholics, though names and rites/rituals might be slightly different.

A basic definition of a Sacrament is a visible sign of an invisible grace instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church (see CCC 1210, 1211). Through them, God speaks to us in ways we can understand and with symbols that are simple. We use water, bread, wine, oils in these Sacraments because they are simple and appeal to the human senses.

The Catechism divides the seven Sacraments into three sections: Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist), of Healing (Penance & Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick), and "Sacraments at the Service of Communion" (Holy Orders and Matrimony) (CCC 1533 Title). My approach to this section is address each Sacrament individually in the order they appear in the Catechism.

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