Sacraments

There are 7 Sacraments of the Catholic Church.

A Sacrament is an outward sign of an invisible reality. What does that mean?

Well, we know that a person who wears a ring on the fourth finger of their left hand is most likely married. Wearing the ring does make them married but it is an outward sign of the reality of marriage. So too with the Sacraments they are outward signs of some aspect of our relationship with God. With one notable difference, namely that the sacraments accomplish that which signify. What does that mean? Well wearing a ring on the fourth finger of your left does not make a person married. However, when a validly ordained priest presides over a celebration of a sacrament the invisible aspect of God that is “represented” or signified by the sacrament is accomplished.

The Sacraments are usually in three groups or categories. The First are the Sacraments of Initiation whereby we become members of the Church, this is a three step process encompassing the Sacraments of Baptism, Eucharist & Confirmation.

The second group are the Sacraments of Healing – Penance/Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick.

The final group are sacraments of mission or sacraments in the service of communion (the community) these are Marriage(Matrimony) and Holy Orders(Ordination)