The Catechism of the Catholic church quotes Vatican II when it teaches that “The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.’ The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained … Continue reading The Eucharist – An Overview
In my last post I reviewed the extraordinary steps God took to make His will known regarding Gentiles entering the Church, and that they did not need to first be circumcised and become Jews. As I mentioned, some want to use this example to profess that believers receive the Holy Spirit at the moment of … Continue reading The Sacrament of Confirmation Part 2
In Luke 3:16, John the Baptist tells those who ask if he is the Christ “I baptize you with water; but he who is mightier than I is coming, the thong of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” The Catholic understanding of … Continue reading The Sacrament of Confirmation Part 1
There is one last Biblical image of Baptism I would like to cover before I leave this topic. There is a most wonderful vision the prophet Ezekiel has in the Old Testament. “Then he brought me back to the door of the temple; and behold, water was issuing from below the threshold of the temple … Continue reading Baptism and the Right Side of the “Temple”
In my previous post, I explored why the Catholic Church baptizes infants and young children. In other posts here and here I discussed why the Church believes that Baptism is necessary for salvation, although we quite clearly do not try to box God in about that. But the question that may remain is what happens … Continue reading What happens to children who die without Baptism?
Within the divide of Christendom, there are those who believe that Baptism is the way we come into the body of Christ, and become born again. That topic was covered here. Along with the ancient Catholic and Orthodox churches, other Christian groups who profess this view would be Anglicans (Episcopalians), Lutherans, Presbyterians, Methodists, and the … Continue reading At what age to baptize?
From the Catholic perspective, proper form, proper matter, and proper intent are required for any sacrament to be valid. With Baptism, the proper matter is water. The proper form is the Trinitarian formula given to us by Christ in Matthew 28:19 “(Name), I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son … Continue reading How are we to baptize?
My last post reviewed the scriptures that indicate to Catholics that Baptism is indeed necessary for salvation. One verse that was not reviewed in that post was some very clear language from St. Mark's Gospel when Jesus gives the apostles the great commission – “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he … Continue reading The Necessity of Baptism Part 2
Catholics believe that it is by Baptism we become members of the body of Christ and receive the initial grace of justification – we are “born again.” Some other Christian groups would believe this as well – the Orthodox Churches, Anglicans (Episcopalians), Lutherans, Presbyterians, Methodists, and the Church of Christ are some examples. Other Christian … Continue reading The Necessity of Baptism Part 1
The first sacrament I will review is Baptism. There are basically two ways to view Baptism within the Christian world. Wikipedia sums it up well: Historically, Christianity has used various metaphors to describe its rite of initiation, that is, spiritual regeneration via the sacrament of baptism by the power of the water and the spirit. … Continue reading Baptism and Being “Born Again”
I will always go back to my youth for the definition of a sacrament – “A sacrament is an outward sign, instituted by Christ, to give grace.” For those of us who grew up during the era of the Baltimore catechism, this was etched into our consciousness from an early age. And I still think … Continue reading The Sacraments – An Overview