The Sacraments

Sacraments are an important part of our faith and worship at St. Luke’s. The Book of Common Prayer teaches us that the sacraments are “outward and visible signs of inward and spiritual grace, given by Christ as sure and certain means by which we receive that grace.” While Episcopalians hold Baptism and Eucharist to be the two great sacraments of the Gospel, our tradition also acknowledges Confirmation, Marriage, Reconciliation, Anointing, and Ordination as additional sacramental acts of the Church.

Baptism is initiation into the mystical life of the Church in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Baptism is the sacrament by which God adopts us as children and makes us members of Christ’s Body, the Church, and the kingdom of God. At St. Luke’s, baptisms occur only when our community is assembled for public worship. If you are interested in preparing yourself or a child for baptism, please contact us.

Eucharist (Holy Communion) is the central act of Sunday worship in the Church. It is one of the sacraments given to us by Christ for the remembrance of his life, death, and resurrection. It is also a wondrous gift of Christ’s living presence, his sacred Body and Blood, offered so that we might live in him and he in us. In and through the Eucharist, the eternal sacrifice of Christ upon the Cross for our redemption is made present, and Christ unites us to his one offering of himself. All baptized Christians are encouraged to receive. If you would like to receive Eucharist at home or in hospital, please contact Deacon Bill.

Confirmation is the public sharing of the power of the Holy Spirit that is given to each Christian at Baptism. In Confirmation, people who are baptized as infants express a mature commitment to Christ and receive strength from the Holy Spirit through prayer and the laying on of hands by a bishop. If you are interested in preparing for Confirmation, please contact us.

Reconciliation (Confession) is a sacred rite in which one confesses his or her sins in the presence of a priest or bishop of the Church. After counsel, the priest or bishop exercises the ministry of reconciliation by pronouncing absolution and pardon. Regular times for confession are appointed in Lent, but confessions may be heard by the clergy at any time. The secrecy of a confession is morally absolute and will in no circumstances be broken. If you would like to make a confession, please contact Fr. Brian.

Marriage (Holy Matrimony) is the solemn and public covenant between two persons in the presence of God. Marriage signifies the mystery of the union between Christ and his Church. For more information on marriage at St. Luke’s, please contact us.

Anointing (Holy Unction) involves a priest, deacon, or bishop laying hands upon a person in need of healing, strength, and wholeness and anointing him or her with oil consecrated solely for this purpose. Anointing may be administered to a person in need at any time and is always administered when a person is dying or near death. If you would like the sacrament of anointing, please contact Fr. Brian.

Ordination (Holy Orders) is the setting apart of men and women who have been called by God to serve the Church as a deacon, priest, or bishop. After lengthy discernment and theological study, candidates for ordination are admitted to these orders by solemn prayer and the laying on of hands by a bishop. If you would like to learn more about Holy Orders, please contact Fr. Brian.