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 Sacraments

​A sacrament is an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace. In the 12th century, the tally of seven sacraments achieved acceptance. Sacraments are a means by which the nature and structure of the church are brought into operation.

The seven sacraments are baptism, confirmation, Eucharist, reconciliation, anointing of the sick, marriage and holy orders.

 Baptism

​Baptism is the gateway to life in the Spirit. It is the means through which we gain access to the other sacraments. Through baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God. By baptism we become members of Christ and his church.

The Diocese of Greensburg has official qualifications of baptism sponsors, as well as the appropriate number of sponsors required.

Parish baptisms usually take place following the Sunday morning Mass. Other times may be scheduled in accordance with the parish schedule.

Preparation is one Baptism Preparation Session conducted by the parish faith formation director and must be completed before a date is scheduled for the baptism. Godparent paperwork must be turned in prior to the ceremony following diocesan sponsor requirements.

 Reconciliation

​Given that sin destroys our relationship with God and undermines our relationship with other human beings, reconciliation designates that precise effect of Christ's redemption of the human race that restores our relationship with God and our human fellowship.

Christ breaks down the barriers that sin raises between us and God, and within the human community.

Our conversion from sin and reception of divine mercy are continually renewed by confession. Serious sin separates us from the body of the church, and sacramental penance reconciles us with God and the community of his people.

This sacrament is also referred to as the sacrament of penance or confession.

This sacrament of reconciliation is celebrated every Saturday at 4:00 p.m., prior to the Saturday evening anticipated Mass.

The director of religious formation is available to give "refresher courses" as needed with any parishioner upon request.

Sacramental Preparation

Our second grade students are prepared for their first confession during the months of October and November with the sacrament being offered to the students for their first time at our Advent/Christmas Penance Service.

 Eucharist

​The Eucharist completes Christian initiation. Through this sacrament of initiation we participate with the whole community of believers in the Lord's own sacrifice.

The Eucharist (from the Greek word eucharista, "thanksgiving") is the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ in which he is present under the forms of bread and wine, offering himself in the sacrifice of the Mass and giving himself as spiritual food to the faithful.

At the Last Supper, the Lord instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his body and blood. He did this in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again, and so to entrust to the church a memorial of his death and resurrection.

The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian Life.

Sacramental Preparation

Religious Education second grade students who have completed the parish's first grade program, the prior year, are prepared during our regular religious education class time to receive their first holy Communion. This celebration is held the first Sunday of May during the scheduled parish Mass.

 Confirmation

​Confirmation brings to completion the grace received through baptism. By this sacrament, the baptized are more perfectly bound to the church and are enriched by the strength of the Holy Spirit.

This gift conforms believers more fully to Christ and strengthens them to bear witness to Christ for the building up of his body in faith and love.

These sacraments are offered according to the guidelines established by the code of canon law and the Diocese of Greensburg. The diocese also has official qualifications of confirmation sponsors, as well as several guidelines and/or recommendations.

Students in eighth grade will received confirmation during the 2017-18 school year.

 Anointing of the Sick

​Through this sacrament, the whole church commends those who are ill to the Lord, that he may raise them up and save them.

By this sacrament, those who suffer are united to the passion and death of Christ. The Lord himself showed great concern for the sick and commanded his followers to do likewise.

Through this sacrament, Christ strengthens the faithful who are afflicted by illness, providing them with the strongest means of support.

A family members should contact the parish office in case of serious illness, or in an emergency. Also, this sacrament is celebrated at least twice a year during one of the weekend Masses.

 Marriage

​The marriage covenant prefigures the new and everlasting covenant between the Son of God and all mankind.

Through this sacrament, Christians signify and share in the mystery of the unity and fruitful love that exists between Christ and his church. Christian couples are to strive to nourish and develop their marriage by undivided attention in good times and in bad.

Find daily marriage tips, quizzes, blogs, facts and figures, "must have conversations," a personality audit, personal stories, the Biblical roots of marriage, prayers, church documents and information about marital sexuality and spirituality at For Your Marriage.

The Celebration of your Marriage at St. James Parish

Contact the pastor as soon as possible to begin paperwork and planning for your wedding. You will be required to complete our parish program. Evenings for the Engaged with our parish sponsor couple. There are several meetings with the pastor and liturgy director in planning the wedding ceremony.

For more information, we ask that you please contact our parish office.

 Holy Orders

​Holy Orders is the sacrament through which the mission entrusted by Christ to his Apostles continues to be exercised in the church. it includes three degrees: diaconate, presbyterate and episcopate.

Episcopal consecration of a bishop confers the offices of sanctifying, teaching and ruling. Priests are consecrated to preach the Gospel and to shepherd the faithful, as well as to celebrate the divine liturgy.

Deacons share in Christ's mission and grace. Among other tasks, deacons assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, and in dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity.

Learn more about vocations in the Diocese of Greensburg by visiting www.gbgvocations.org.