According to the Catholic Church the principle of sacramentality is as, God himself gave us the son who is God and He was born as a human being. God himself became human through his son, was born by the blessed Mary and was raised up as a man on the earth. In this way God is seen, touched and heard as a human being.
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The Catholic Church has a number of sacraments. An example of this is the Eucharist sacrament. As the Lord Jesus himself said, “Take, eat; this is my body” (Matthew 26:26, New King James Version). Even after Jesus ascending into heaven He assured his people that he will always be with them in the holy Eucharist. This is why the Eucharist is an example of the principle of sacramentality.
In the Catholic Church there are three sacraments of initiation. They include the sacrament of baptism, the sacrament of confirmation and the sacrament of Holy Communion. The sacrament of baptism is given to the person who accepts to be baptized and is baptized. Jesus himself set the first example to his church for his followers to follow. He was baptized by John the Baptist. When a person is baptized he or she is fully accepted into the church. One is ready to proceed with the church requirements. In history of the church, most of the baptism was done outside the church buildings. When a person is not baptized he or she is not welcomed in participating in most of the church’s activities. After the baptism is done one is welcome into the church. This shows that a person has freedom to take part in the activities of the church. Baptism is the way of removing the original sins of our parents that is, the sins of Adam and Eve. A person has a new beginning in his or her Christian life.”……………. Most assuredly. I say to you, unless one is born of water and spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God…………………” (John 3:1-21).
The second sacrament of initiation is the sacrament of confirmation. The sacrament is for the baptized people who have enough knowledge of good and evil in their life. In the past, the Catholic Church mostly recommended for the children of age seven years and above having the sacrament of confirmation. The bishops or the priest laid hands on the people as a sign of welcoming the holy spirit of God into one’s life. As the sacrament is given to the people the bishop or the priests may say be sealed with the gift of the holy spirit of God. ‘’………..They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. They laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 8:15-17). The church also gave the sacrament to the children under the age of seven if the child was in the state of life and death.
The third sacrament of initiation is the Holy Communion. The sacrament is for all the Catholic Church members and those from the protestant churches that have met all the requirement of the church to take part in the Holy Communion. Once a person is baptized and confirmed into the church he or she is ready for the Holy Communion. The Holy Communion is the body and the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. When one is participating it the sacrament, one is into fullness with Christ the son of God (1 Corinthians 11:27-29). “……. Most assuredly. I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the son of man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. “(John 6:53).
“………….when He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold , the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him…………” (Matthew 3:13-17). The sacrament of baptism is for all those who believe and trust in Jesus Christ the son of God. In the Catholic Church, baptism is done to cleans the original sins. It is the sins of Adam and Eve that they committed at the Garden of Eden. Baptism is for the young children and the old. Infants are baptized to welcome them into the Catholic Church faith. (Root and Saarinen, 1998). In the Catholic Church believes that the original sins can only be cleans when one is baptized. The sacrament of baptism shows a new beginning in a person’s life. When Jesus was baptized He entered into the desert to start His work. After Jesus was baptized He was ready to start his work on earth.
The church welcomes every person who has taken the step of being baptized either in the Catholic Church or in the other churches provided that one is anointed with oil and the holy water is use during the baptism. Those who are accepted into the Catholic Church from other churches. During the baptism the Holy Trinity should be called upon, that is, in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. One must reject all the ways of the devil and accept the Holy Spirit to guide him or her. The person receiving the sacrament must ready to profess his or her faith during the baptism. Baptism is the act of birth and welcome of new people into Christianity life.
“And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.” (Acts 19:6). The sacrament of confirmation take place after one is baptized with water. The sacrament of confirmation is a seal of the Holy Spirit into one’s life. The Catholic Church has some of the key ways for a person to qualify to receive this sacrament. One must be baptized with water, be of age seven years and above and for the extreme case a child below seven years who may be about to die is given the sacrament of confirmation (Gabrielli, 2013). During this time the every church member lights a candle to signify the presence of the Holy Spirit of God. Confirmation of a Christian in the Catholic Church is a way to show that a person is spiritually and religiously ready to be with the others in the church for a Christianity life.
The priest or the bishop lay his hands on the people taking the sacrament of confirmation. The priest may say, “The seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit of God.” This is one way of uniting all the Christians together as one. When one is united with the Holy Spirit he or she is united with the God the Father and God the Son as all are one. The laying of hands and the presence of the candles in the church shows the presence of the Holy Spirit. “……. the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.” (Matthew 3:16). This is also a symbol of the presence of God during the sacrament of confirmation.
“……… he who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. …………..” (John 6:53-58). The sacrament of the Eucharist is the body of the Son of God. The Holy catholic church has recommended to each person who has been baptized and confirmed in the church a chance to receive the Holy Eucharist at least once a year. It is the best way to be close to the Son of God. Receiving the holy communion daily make the Christians more and more close to God. The catholic church urges its people to receive the Eucharist daily where it is possible.
Before receiving the body and the blood of Jesus the Son of God one must be clean in his or her heart. This means heart without sins. The catholic church recommend for a person to first reconcile with his or her friends and confess the mortal sins one has committed (Luijten, 2003). When one has stayed for a long time without receiving the Eucharist, the church gives a confession sacrament that cleans ones sins. If one is not able to receive the Holy communion he or she can pray the Act of Spiritual communion. This shows ones desire to be united with Christ in the communion.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23). Every Christian has a goal and an obligation to fully obey the commandments of God. Breaking the commandment is a mortal sin. Christians are very scared of the eternal punishment which is fire. The sacrament of penance gives us the chance to confess the mortal sins one has committed. the catholic church has given the Christians a way to reconcile with their creator. The sacrament of penance draws people back into the right path of the church and the Christianity family. Through the mercy of our Creator we have the blood of Jesus to help us to be in good terms with His Father.
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