Our Catholic sacraments are visible signs of God’s grace and invite us to imitate Christ in our daily lives. We encounter the living God through symbols, ritual actions, words, and community. As we prepare for each sacrament, we are called to a deeper intimacy with God as Creator, more intentional living as a disciple of Christ, and an expectation and openness to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Bellarmine Chapel is part of the Church’s long history of celebrating the sacraments with full, conscious, and active participation. Tangible signs are important to our understanding and experience of God’s grace. We are the Body of Christ, and as we come to the sacraments within that Body, we feel supported, lifted in prayer, and incorporated into Christ.
The Catholic Church has Seven Sacraments. They are the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, the Eucharist), the Sacraments of Healing (Reconciliation and the Anointing of the Sick), and the Sacraments of Vocation (Marriage and Holy Orders).
The Sacraments of Initiation form the foundation of every Christian life. Baptism incorporates us into the Church and lays the foundation for our call to live the Gospel as disciples of Christ. Confirmation seals us with the gifts of the Holy Spirit to be shared with the Church and the world. Receiving the Eucharist is at the heart of our Catholic faith. When we receive the Body and Blood of Christ, we become what we eat and celebrate our unity in our brokenness as we too are poured out for others.
The Sacraments of Healing move us to be a people seeking and giving healing and reconciliation. Reconciliation invites us to experience God’s love and mercy as we are freed from our sins and challenged to have the same kind of compassion and forgiveness for those who sin against us. Anointing unites us in prayer with the entire Church as we seek comfort, healing, and strength in difficult times.
The Sacraments of Vocation are the ways we live out our discipleship. A married couple witnesses Christ’s spousal love for the Church through their Sacrament of Marriage. Through Holy Orders, priests and deacons help Christians imitate Christ’s mission of love and justice.
We are mindful at the Eucharist of the connection between each sacrament and our mission as followers of Jesus and as the Body of Christ. We are sent out from the sacrament of the altar to the sacrament of our neighbor.