The Sacraments

Baptism

Through Baptism we are given the privilege of being part of our Catholic community. 
In Baptism we are given a share in God’s life Baptism incorporates us into the Body of Christ
Through the waters of Baptism we have been liberated from the slavery of sin in order to live life to the full
The outpouring of the Spirit at baptism enables us to bring Christ to the World.

The Symbols of Baptism

Baptism with Water
The water is a symbol of cleansing-washing away original sin. It is also a sign of life-the new spiritual life that the baby or child is entering.
Anointing with Oil
The oil symbolises strengthening of faith in the challenges of life ahead-the sealing with the Holy Spirit.
White Garment
A baby or child is usually clothed in white or have a stole or white bib to symbolise purity and innocence.
Candle
Symbolises the new life that is given through the sacrament of Baptism.
Enquiries: Please contact the Parish Secretary on (02) 9724 21510 or email here

 

Confirmation

The Sacrament of Confirmation is the second of the three sacraments of Christian initiation.

Confirmation completes Baptism, by which in the laying on of hands and the anointing with Chrism Oil, which first happened at Baptism, we are confirmed with the fullness of the Holy Spirit.

We are reminded of our participation in the ministry and mission of Jesus, and strengthened to follow Jesus more closely.
 
What happens during the sacrament of Confirmation?
The Sacrament of Confirmation consists of the renewal of baptismal promises and the laying on of hands and anointing with the oil of Chrism. The anointing of the candidate is a sign of confirming the gift of the Spirit, and calling the candidates to use these gifts to become involved in the life and mission of the community.

Usually the bishop presides over this sacrament.
What are the symbolic actions of Confirmation?
The Laying On of Hands
What are the symbolic gestures of Confirmation - Laying of hands
The bishop places his hands on the head of the candidates and prays for the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

This ritualises the connection to Baptism and the strengthening of the Holy Spirit in our vocation to follow the way of Jesus.

Anointing with oil
What are the symbolic gestures of Confirmation - Anointing with oil
The anointing of the candidate at Confirmation recognises that they are sealed with the Holy Spirit.

The bishop anoints the candidate’s forehead with the Oil of Chrism, saying ‘Be sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit’.

The Sign of Peace
What are the symbolic gestures of Confirmation - The Sign of Peace
At the end of the rite, the bishop puts his hand on the side of the candidate’s face and says ‘Peace be with you’ and the candidate replies with ‘And with your spirit’, symbolising the candidate’s place within the Church community.

What do I need to do if I would like to have my child confirmed?
To start the process to be confirmed you will need to contact your local parish. We have a contact page to help you contact our parish if you live in or near Cabramatta.

Parents are the first teachers of faith to their children and therefore are required to take part in the parish preparation to enable them to understand the meaning of the sacrament and the commitment they will make to support their child’s growth in faith and life.

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Confirmation

To follow up with these, or any other questions, contact the parish's office. The parish office staff will put you in touch with either the parish priest or another suitable person who will assist you in the process of your child’s Confirmation.  Download the Confirmation Enrolment Form

Who can be confirmed?
Any baptised person can be admitted for Confirmation preparation.

Confirmation Name
Choosing a Confirmation name has never been an official part of the sacrament, although it has been a popular custom in many places.

Our given names are a very important part of our identity. Parents put a lot of thought into choosing a child’s name. It is appropriate for a candidate to confirm the name given at Baptism.

If a saint’s name is chosen, it should be a name of a saint that inspires the child. Choosing a Confirmation name helps put us in contact with our greater Christian story.

Who should I choose as a sponsor?
Confirmation is a reaffirmation of the promises made at Baptism, therefore the Church recommends that a child’s godparent take on the role of sponsor for Confirmation.

Sponsors should be: at least 16 years old, not the child’s parent, a Catholic who has been confirmed, receives Communion and who lives a life of faith.

What is the responsibility of the sponsor?
Since a sponsor has such a significant role to play in the development of the candidate for Confirmation, it is important that this person be one who is a living example of faith, one whose actions reflect the actions of Jesus. A Confirmation sponsor offers support and encouragement during the Confirmation preparation process.

During the Confirmation ceremony sponsors bring the candidates forward and present them to the bishop.

Eucharist

Eucharist is the sacrament that completes the process of initiation and is when one can fully participate in the Eucharist by receiving Holy Communion.
Eucharist is unique among the sacraments as it is at the heart of our faith. For Catholics, the Eucharist, or Mass, is the most powerful way we encounter the real presence of Jesus Christ. Sunday after Sunday (some, of course, gather everyday), Catholics gather to celebrate the Eucharist, the ritual in which, by the power of the Holy Spirit, bread and wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ. We who celebrate are also transformed, becoming Christ’s presence to others, and recognising the presence of Christ in others.
Symbols of Eucharist
Bread – Wheat is grown and ground, transformed by human work to make bread. Bread is a staple food of life.
Wine – Grapes are grown and crushed, transformed by human work to make wine. Wine symbolises joy and celebration.
Bread and wine symbolise the Creator who gives life, the one who nourishes us.
At the Last Supper Jesus gave himself in the form of bread and wine.

What happens during Eucharist?

The Eucharist (Eucharist is a Greek word that means “thanksgiving”) is the whole ritual that has come to be known as the Mass. The Eucharist is therefore a holy moment which includes the consecration of the body and blood of Jesus.
The Eucharist includes:
- the sharing of the Word from scripture
- offering of prayers
- doing what Jesus did at the Last supper taking, blessing, breaking and sharing his body and blood
- being sent forth to live and proclaim the Good News

Frequently Asked Questions about Eucharist

To follow up with these, or any other questions, contact your local parish. The parish office staff will put you in touch with either the parish priest or another suitable person who will assist you in the process of preparing your child for Holy Communion.
Who prepares the children for Eucharist?
It is the duty of parents and the parish to offer children prayerful and practical help to celebrate the sacraments with proper devotion and to form them in the rituals of receiving the sacraments. Parishes work with families to help parents prepare their children to grow in their friendship with Jesus and their connection to the Church community.
What happens if my child is coeliac?
If your child suffers from allergies speak to the priest or sacramental coordinator. Gluten free and low gluten hosts are available. What does my child need to wear?
What is appropriate will be influenced by the varying situations, traditions and wishes of the families involved and guided by parish practice. Candidates are encouraged to wear what is age appropriate and culturally appropriate for their family.

 

Penance

The Sacrament of Penance is one of two sacraments of healing (the other being the Anointing of the Sick). Penance is a sacrament of forgiveness and celebrates God’s love and mercy towards us. It is about acknowledging and naming those times when we know we have done wrong, and then making peace and restoring the relationships with those who have been affected by our poor choices. The Sacrament of Penance is celebrated through the Rites of Reconciliation.

What happens during Penance?
Penance involves the individual acknowledging their sins and receiving the forgiveness of God through the ministry of the priest.

Through this process, a person is reconciled with the Church, renews his or her Baptism, and continues to live as a disciple of Jesus.

Frequently Asked Questions about Penance

To follow up with these, or any other questions, contact your local parish. The parish office staff will put you in touch with either the parish priest or another suitable person who will assist you in the process of your child’s Reconciliation.

Why so many different names for the same sacrament?
The names emphasise different aspects of the sacrament.

Penance refers to our remorse, sorrow and resolution to amend our life with God’s help. Confession refers to the act by which we tell our sins to the priest.

Reconciliation refers to the goal of the celebration which is that sinners are reconciled to God and the Church. The ritual is called the Sacrament of Penance, but is appropriate to refer to it with any of these titles.

What are the different ways that Reconciliation can occur?
There are three different forms that the Sacrament of Penance can take.

First form or Rite of Reconciliation is when we individually confess our sins to the priest.
Second form or Rite of Reconciliation is a celebration that occurs within the Church with the whole community and involves individual confession and absolution.
Third form or Rite of Reconciliation is also centred on the gathering of the community but is designed for situations where there is a grave necessity.
When will my child be prepared for the Sacrament of Penance?
In the Archdiocese of Brisbane children will celebrate a simple Second Rite of Reconciliation as part of their preparation for First Holy Communion. They will be formally prepared for the Sacrament when they are a little older and have a greater understanding, at about ten years old.

Can a priest tell someone else about what they have heard in Confession?
When a person confesses their sins to a priest in the Sacrament of Penance, a very sacred trust is formed. The priest must maintain absolute secrecy about anything that a person confesses. This secrecy is called “the seal of confession”. Under no circumstances is the priest allowed to break this sacred seal.

Marriage


"Together may you follow the way of love as Christ loved you."
Ephesians 5:2

We look forward to preparing you for one of the most wonderful experiences of human life: "Celebrating your love in marriage and God's presence in your lives". We want you to know that your wedding will be part of a long tradition of weddings celebrated here at Sacred Heart Parish.

At least six months, before your wedding date, please contact the parish office: (02) 9724 2151, to begin your marriage preparations. Congratulations!

 

Anointing of the Sick

The anointing of the sick is administered to bring spiritual and even physical strength during an illness, especially near the time of death. It is most likely one of the last sacraments one will receive. A sacrament is an outward sign established by Jesus Christ to confer inward grace. In more basic terms, it is a rite that is performed to convey God’s grace to the recipient, through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Holy Orders

The sacrament of Holy Orders creates a priest.

There’s a little more to it than that, of course. As the Catechism’s section on Holy Orders says: this “is the sacrament through which the mission entrusted by Christ to his apostles continues to be exercised in the Church until the end of time: thus it is the sacrament of apostolic ministry. It includes three degrees”—the orders of bishop, priest, and deacon. (Catechism, 1536)

Becoming Catholic

The Catholic Church has a special way of initiating adults into the Catholic faith. It is called the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). It is a period of Christian formation offered to those seeking to become Catholic. The RCIA may also be referred to as the Catechumenate, highlighting its roots in the Christian formation of the early Church. The Rite encompasses all aspects of the Christian life and includes an adaptation for children.

The RCIA takes place within a parish community so you are able to share in the life of the Church expressed in a local faith community. It offers a way to grow in knowledge of Christ and the Catholic faith in company with others on a similar journey.

If you are interested in becoming Catholic or want to dive deeper into the Catholic faith this video is for you! Hope these helps.  To learn more about the Catholic faith please click on the links below :

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