The sacraments celebrated in the Catholic community are a treasure of the Catholic faith.
These guidelines are designed to help the parish community celebrate sacraments fully
and with the proper understanding while providing guidance to those responsible for
Whenever there are children in multi-parish programs (school or religious education), the
role of the home parish for the celebration of the sacraments must be respected. It is the
parents’ responsibility to check with their local pastor regarding their parish policies for
the preparation and celebration of the sacraments.
These guidelines present the community’s story and theology for each of the following
sacraments: Infant Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, and Reconciliation. Ideas are
offered for sacrament preparation and sacramental celebration. Each section contains a
theological reflection, answers to frequently asked questions, and further resources.
Sacraments are described not so much as something we “receive.” Rather, they are
presented as a way to express God’s loving and compassionate presence in the life of
each person. Sacraments are “celebrated” when candidates are able to freely respond to
the action of God in their lives.
In the case of infant baptism, parents, with the support of the faith community, freely
choose to place their child in the loving arms of God and promise to raise their child in a
manner that will support the promise made. The celebration of sacraments enables the
community to be touched by God in a way that sustains and nurtures it throughout life.