Spiritual Growth


  • Seven Sacraments
  • Sweet Duty As Catholic
  • Essential Prayers
Seven Sacraments

Seven Sacraments Catholics believe in seven sacraments because Christ instituted seven; because the Apostles and Church Fathers believed in seven; because the second Ecumenical Council of Lyons (1274) defined seven and because the Ecumenical Council of Trent (1545-1563) confirmed seven. In short, the enumeration, seven, arises from the perpetual tradition of Christian belief--which explains why that enumeration is accepted not only by Catholics, but by all of the other ancient and semi-ancient Christian communities--Egyptian Coptic, Ethiopian Monophysite, Syrian Jacobite, Greek Orthodox and Russian Orthodox.

 

To understand what a sacrament is, and what it does for a person, one must know the correct, the traditional Christian, definition of a sacrament. Properly defined, a sacrament is ``an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace'' (holiness) to the soul . . . that is to say, it is a divinely prescribed ceremony of the Church in which the words and action combine to form what is at the same time both a sign of divine grace and a fount of divine grace. When this special grace--distinct from ordinary, inspirational grace--is imparted to the soul, the Holy Spirit of God is imparted to the soul, imbuing the soul with divine life, uniting the soul to Christ. As the Scriptures point out, this grace is the grace of salvation--without it man is, in a very real sense, isolated from Christ. And as the Scriptures point out, Christ gave His Church seven sacraments to serve as well-springs of this ineffable, soul-saving grace, the grace which flows from His sacrifice on Calvary:

 

BAPTISM--the sacrament of spiritual rebirth through which we are made children of God and heirs of Heaven: ``Amen, amen I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.'' (John 3:5. Also see Acts 2:38, Rom. 6:2-6).

 

CONFIRMATION--the sacrament which confers the Holy Spirit to make us strong and perfect Christians and soldiers of Jesus Christ: ``Now when the apostles, who were in Jerusalem, had heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John. Who, when they were come, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost.... Then they laid their hands upon them, and they received the Holy Ghost.'' (Acts 8:14-17. Also see Acts 19:6).The 

 

EUCHARIST--the sacrament, also known as Holy Communion, which nourishes the soul with the true Flesh and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus, under the appearance, or sacramental veil, of bread and wine: ``And whilst they were eating, Jesus took bread; and blessing, broke, and gave to them, and said: Take ye. This is my body. And having taken the chalice, giving thanks, he gave it to them. And they all drank of it. And he said to them: This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many.'' (Mark 14:22-24. Also see Matt. 26:26-28, Luke 22:19-20, John 6:52-54, 1 Cor. 10:16).

 

PENANCE--the sacrament, also known as Confession, through which Christ forgives sin and restores the soul to grace: ``Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained. '' (John 20:22-23. Also see Matt. 18:18).

 

EXTREME UNCTION--the sacrament, sometimes called the Last Anointing, which strengthens the sick and sanctifies the dying: ``Is any man sick among you? Let him bring in the priests of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord . . . and if he be in ,ins, they shall be forgiven him.'' (James 5:14-15. Also see Mark 6:12-13).

 

HOLY ORDERS--the sacrament of ordination which empowers priests to offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, administer the sacraments, and officiate over all the other proper affairs of the Church: ``For every high priest taken from among men, is ordained for men in the things that appertain to God, that he may offer up gifts and sacrifices for sins.... Neither doth any man take the honor to himself, but he that is called by God, as Aaron was.'' (Heb. 5:1-4. Also see Acts 20:28,1 Tim. 4:14). Also: ``And taking bread, he gave thanks, and broke; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of me.'' (Luke 22:19).

 

MATRIMONY--the sacrament which unites a man and woman in a holy and indissoluble bond: ``For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they two shall be in one flesh. Therefore now they are not two, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.'' (Matt. 19:5-6. Also see Mark 10:7-9, Eph. 5:22-32).There you have it, the Word of Christ and the example of the Apostles attesting both to the validity and the efficacy of the seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church. In truth, every one of them is an integral part of Christ's plan for man's eternal salvation.  


Sweet Duty As Catholic

In Holy Scripture, Nineteen times God admonishes us to “Love One Another; let us strive to do His will!


John 13:34

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 


John 13:35

By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

John 15:12

This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

John 15:17

These things I command you, that ye love one another.

Romans 12:10

Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another.

Romans 13:8

Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

Galatians 5:13

For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.

Ephesians 4:2

With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love.

1 Thessalonians 3:12

And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men even as we do toward you:

1 Thessalonians 4:9

But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.

Hebrews 10:24

And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:

1 Peter 1:22

Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:

1 Peter 3:8

Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:

1 John 3:11

For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.

1 John 3:23

And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

1 John 4:7

Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.

1 John 4:11

Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

1 John 4:12

No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

2 John 1:5

And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another. 

IN THE SPIRIT OF ECUMANISM THESE BELOVED WORDS WERE TAKEN FROM THE KING JAMES VERSION OF HOLY SCRIPTURE. These have been approved as Catholic doctrine

Essential Prayers

The Lord's Prayer

Our Father,

Who art in Heaven

Hallowed be thy name;

Thy kingdom come;

Thy will be done on Earth

As it is in heaven.

Give us this day

Our daily bread and forgive us

our trespasses

as we forgive those

who trespass against us;

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.  AMEN 


Hail Mary

Hail Mary, full of grace

The Lord is with you

Blessed are you among women and

Blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus

Holy Mary, Mother of God

Pray for us sinners, now and at the

hour of our death.  AMEN 


The Apostle's Creed


I believe in God, the Father almighty, 

Creator of heaven and earth, 


and in Jesus Christ, 

his only Son, our Lord, 

who was conceived by

the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate, 

was crucified, died and was buried; 

he descended into hell; 

on the third day he rose again 

from the dead; 

  

he ascended into heaven, 

and is seated at the right hand 

of God the Father almighty

from there he will come to judge 

the living and the dead. 


I believe in the Holy Spirit, 

the holy catholic Church, 

the communion of saints, 

the forgiveness of sins, 

the resurrection of the body, 

and life everlasting. Amen.


Prayer of Sorrow

My God, I am sorry for my sins

with all my heart, in choosing to do

wrong and failing to do good, I have

sinned against you whom I should

love above all things.  I firmly intend with

your help to do penance, to sin no moreand avoid whatever leads me to sin. 

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