A Pilgrim's Catechism
The Occasional Thoughts of a 21st-Century Roman Catholic on Journey
Towards the Reign of God
Roger van der Weyden
The Seven Sacrament Altarpiece
What is a sacrament?
A sacrament is a visible and effective sign of God’s sharing his divine life with human beings. Jesus Christ is the fundamental sacrament in whom the other sacraments find their source. The Church, the visible gathering of believers in the Christ as Lord and Savior, is also a fundamental sacrament because Jesus Christ gives us the other sacraments through the Church.
The Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox churches recognize seven sacraments (mysteries for the Orthodox): baptism, confirmation (chrismation for the Orthodox), Holy Eucharist, penance, the anointing of the sick, holy orders and matrimony. Some ecclesial communities recognize only baptism and Eucharist, the so-called gospel sacraments. Some hesitate using the word sacrament and refer to baptism and Eucharist as ordinances.
ANOINTING OF THE SICK