The Seven Sacraments

(All content on this page by Aileen Urquhart)

Sacraments are clear signs that Jesus has given us. They point to an inner reality. There are seven sacraments, and each one signifies a different grace and blessing.


This is the first Sacrament. It is the way of initiation into the Church. In Baptism, water and oils are used as symbols of what is happening. Water is life-giving, and this sacrament is a sign of the life of God within us. Oil symbolises our noble status as children of God. Kings and queens are annointed, and so are priests. Batpism makes us 'a royal priesthood.'As water is  poured over the head of the recipient the priest says the words, '(Name) I baptise you, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.'


Infant baptism is the norm these days, and Fr Nigel will prepare the parents. The baptism usually takes place on a Sunday afternoon. When adults wish to be baptised they have a longer preparation period, as they prepare for Reconciliation, Communion and Confirmation at the same time.

water and sky

I chose this photo, not only because of the water, but because of the reflections. We are children of God, and our mission is to reflect God's love to a lost world.


Although normally the third sacrament received by Christians Confirmation is actually the second sacrament of initiation. This is because historically it was administered by the bishop straight after baptism. It is not a sacrament of maturity, but at the same time it is an opportunity for young people to take responsibilty for the vows made on their behalf when they were baptised. The outward sign of chrism (oil) is used again, (see Baptism, above) and the sacrament signifies a fresh outpouring of the Spirit of God, with all the Spirit's gifts (and responsibilities).


Bishop Marcus is intending that the Sacrament of Confirmation be administered to children in school year 6, as the norm, rather than in school year 9.
For this reason our parish will be giving Confirmation preparation sessions for members of this year’s Year 6 on Friday afternoons, from 2.30pm – 3.30pm on these dates: 27 April, 4, 11, 18, 25 May, 15, 22, 29 June and 6 and 13 of July. As you can see, ten sessions in total.
These will all take place in St Joseph’s School Hall. Each child must be accompanied by at least one parent (ideally both parents). This is not intended for St Joseph’s School children only. If you have a child in current Yr 6 in another school, and you wish them to be confirmed, then please bring them along to the first session. The Sacrament of Confirmation  will then be celebrated at St Joseph’s  Church at some time (yet to be decided) in November 2018. We will be beginning a similar programme for next school year’s Year 6 children in late September.  There will be a celebration of Confirmation this summer at St Joseph’s for children in years above Year 6, and who have not yet been confirmed. Fr Nigel already has a list of names for this, and will be contacting parents shortly about the preparation times and venue.


poppies in field

I chose this photo as poppies are symbols of bravery and devotion in England, and the seeds remind me of the new life that comes from sacrifice and commitment.


This is the final sacrament of initiation into the church. It is called a daily sacrament as it is received again and again. In this sacrament we receive Jesus, to strengthen us in love. Jesus comes to us under the appearances of bread and wine. When we receive the bread we can remember Jesus helps us in our daily toil. The wine reminds us that we are united with Jesus in the joys of life, and also that we 'drink the cup of sorrow' with him in our low times.


From 2018 children are to be prepared when they are in Year Four or above. Parents will prepare their child alongside the catechist. For up-to-date details look at this page

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I chose this photo as......(to be chosen!