Sacraments

The term Sacraments refers to the sacred signs that mark stages of the Catholic faith journey.

Click on any of the names below to read about the celebration of that sacrament at St Michael's.

 

 
Planning your baptism
To download a copy of the text for a Baptism Ceremony (PDF) +click here

To print off a suggested Order of Service for a Baptism +click here
 
The Sacrament of Baptism
Beginning to belong

We all begin life in the waters of our mother's womb. Those waters "break" and we are born into a particular family. The family is where we will learn what it means to belong to a human family. We will learn, we will absorb, the traditions and ways of doing things in that family.

But there is the possibility of belonging to a much wider family - the family of the Church, that has Jesus as its heart and head. Jesus came to bring new life (John 10:10), a life that makes it possible for us to be children of God, to be filled with the new Spirit and have Jesus himself as our brother.

So there is another birth possible. The waters of Baptism break over us. We are born again of water and the Spirit. We are christened; we are alive in Christ. In fact, the baptismal bath or font is sometimes called the "womb of the Church".

So Baptism is the first step of our initiation into the Church, followed by Confirmation and receiving Holy Communion. To come to the Communion Table is the summit of belonging.
 
Most are baptised (christened) as infants, but often individuals reach adulthood and want to be baptised. For such cases we have the RCIA, the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. The Adults Becoming Catholic link gives more information about the process for adults seeking to belong to the Catholic Community
 
Symbols that tell us much about Baptism.

CHRISM - A SWEET SMELLING OIL
After the pouring of the water the person’s head is anointed with Chrism, a precious oil that is consecrated every year around Easter time by the Bishop. A baptized person is meant to be recognized by the goodness of their lives. Hear the similarity of sound: Christ, Christening, Christian, Chrism.

LIGHT
Standing close to the font is the EASTER CANDLE, the Christ Candle. A family candle is lit from the Christ candle and handed to the Parents: “Parents and godparents, this light is entrusted to you to be kept burning brightly. This child of your has been enlightened by Christ. He/she is to walk always as a child of the light. May she/he keep the flame of faith alive in his/her heart.”

WHITE GARMENT
“You are clothed in Christ.” The garment is the sign of BELONGING to the community. “See in this garment the outward sign of your Christian dignity. With your family and friends to help you, bring that dignity unstained into the everlasting life of heaven.”

BLESSING
The Liturgy of Baptism concludes with a blessing: “My brothers and sisters, we entrust you all to the mercy and help of God, the almighty Father, his only Son, and the Holy Spirit. May he watch over your life, and may we walk by the light of faith and attain the good things he has promised us. Go in peace.”

Long after the rattles are quiet and the baby clothes are outgrown, the signs of baptism continue to shower God’s gifts on the baptized.

If you are a parent and want your child baptised, contact Viki Cullen and she will help you prepare for this special occasion. Viki, sometimes with others assisting her, will help you to choose suitable readings and prayers for the Baptism Service, from the many options that are available.
"Go to all peoples everywhere and make them my disciples;
 Baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
 
External Links
6 Beatrice Road, Remuera, Auckland | Phone +649 520 1226 | Email contact@remueracatholic.org.nz
All content © St. Michael's Parish, Catholic Diocese of Auckland
Site by Ravlich Consulting Ltd. | Login