Sacraments and Liturgical Celebrations
We recognize that the Sacraments have a visible and invisible reality, a reality open to all the human senses but grasped in its God-given depths with the eyes of faith. When parents hug their children, for example, the visible reality we see is the hug. The invisible reality the hug conveys is love. We cannot "see" the love the hug expresses, though sometimes we can see its nurturing effect on the child.
The visible reality we see in the Sacraments is their outward expression, the form they take, and the way in which they are administered and received. The invisible reality we cannot "see" is God's grace, his gracious initiative in redeeming us through the death and Resurrection of his Son. His initiative is called grace because it is the free and loving gift by which he offers people a share in his life, and shows us his favor and will for our salvation. Our response to the grace of God's initiative is itself a grace, or gift from God, by which we can imitate Christ in our daily lives.
The saving words and deeds of Jesus Christ are the foundation of what he would communicate in the Sacraments through the ministers of the Church. Guided by the Holy Spirit, the Church recognizes the existence of Seven Sacraments instituted by the Lord. They are the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, the Eucharist), the Sacraments of Healing (Penance and the Anointing of the Sick), and the Sacraments at the Service of Communion (Marriage and Holy Orders). Through the Sacraments, God shares his holiness with us so that we, in turn, can make the world holier.
The first step leading to full incorporation with Christ and His Church is baptism. Parents accept a great deal of responsibility in presenting a child for baptism. They will be the child's first teachers of the faith. Prior to baptism, the parents must fulfill two requirements:
The first is to attend a class on the meaning of the sacrament. Classes are held on the first Sunday of the month after the 9:30 AM Mass. Please call the office to register.
The second is that at least one of the parents be baptized and also be a registered member of St. Clare Parish.
The sacrament is ministered on either a Saturday or Sunday when Fr. Ed will be presiding. To register for a baptism class and to schedule a baptism, please contact the parish office at 262-895-2729
The Eucharist is the source and summit of Catholic life and celebration of First Eucharist is an exciting event for young Catholics and their families. Children are invited to prepare for the sacrament when they reach the age of reason, usually around age seven or in the second grade. A minimum of two years of Catholic instruction is required to participate in this sacrament.
Candidates for the sacrament of Confirmation must be baptized Catholics who are at least sixteen years of age. They should be ready to affirm their baptism with the celebration of their Confirmation.
Our Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) program is for adults who want to become Catholic. For more information, contact the Director of Religious Education at the parish office.