Sacraments of Initiation

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Sacraments of Initiation


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BAPTISM

Welcome to God’s Family!

Baptism is the first sacrament and the gateway to life in the Spirit. Each of the other sacraments builds on the grace of Baptism. Through Baptism, a person becomes a member of the Church and a disciple of Jesus. Original sin is cleansed and the person gains the promise of eternal life in Christ. Baptism is celebrated only once in a person’s lifetime.

St. Amelia Parish typically celebrates the sacrament of baptism after the 11:00 Mass.   New and expectant parents who are preparing to present their child for baptism are invited to take part in a preliminary session, where they are encouraged to better understand their role as the first educators of their children in the faith.  This session is offered on a bi-monthly basis, and new parents can register by calling the Rectory.  ‘Please contact the Parish Office at 716-836-0011 for more information or to schedule a Baptism.

Godparents have the privileged role of assisting parents to nurture the child’s faith from childhood though maturity. According to Canon Law (#872-874):

  • A godparent must be at least sixteen years of age 
  • Be fully initiated into the faith (i.e. has received the sacraments of initiation: Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist).
  • He or she should lead a life of faith in harmony with the duty undertaken.
  • The godparent may not be one of the parents of the child being baptized.
  • One godparent is required for Baptism and a maximum of two can participate in the ritual and be recorded in the baptismal record.
  • Only one Catholic godparent is required.

Adults and children aged seven and older are prepared for Baptism through the parish-based Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (with adaptations for children). 

RECONCILIATION (Confession or Penance)

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available at St. Amelia’s every Saturday from 3:30 – 4:30pm, Mondays at 6:30pm and Wednesday’s at 4:00pm. Before celebrating this sacrament, one should examin their conscience and self reflect prayerfully about one’s own thoughts, words and actions so that you may identify any sins.  Resources on how to do this are located below.

Children are prepared for their Reconciliation through our Religious Education Department. 

How to go to Confession:

Begin by making the sign of the cross, then say:

Bless me Father for I have sinned.  It has been (insert time) since my last Confession. My sins are…..

Tell the priest how you have sinned. When you are done, the priest will now talk to you and give you something to do or tell you to say special prayers to make up for your sins. (This is your penance). 

The priest will ask you to say the Act of Contrition.

My God, I am sorry for my sins with all  my heart.  In choosing to do wrong, and failing to do good, I have sinned against you, whom I should love above all things.  I firmly intend, with your help, to do pennance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us.  In His name, my God, have mercy.  Amen

The priest will then give you absolution. He will place his hand over your head and speak the prayer of absolution.

Make the Sign of the Cross and say, “Amen”. And then as you leave you should say, “Thank You, Father”.

Examination of Conscience resources can be found in the links below:

For more information and a better understanding, you can visit the Dicocese of Buffalo website or CLICK HERE.


EUCHARIST

“Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.'” – John 6:35

Children are prepared to receive their First Holy Communion through the Religious Education Department.  More information can be found here: https://www.stameliareled.com

Adults that wish to become Catholic canfind out more information through our RCIA program located in the Spiritual Life section of our website.

Communion to the Homebound

During this time of the Coronavirus, it has not been possible for lay people to bring communion to the homebound. If you or a loved one would like a visit from the priests of the parish, please call the parish office during regular office hours Monday-Friday at 836-0011 and one of the priests would be happy to visit and bring you Communion. As soon as these restrictions are removed, we will once again have our Eucharistic ministers bring Communion on Sunday

CONFIRMATION

Youth are prepared to receive Confirmation through the Religious Education Deptartment.  You can find more information here: https://www.stameliareled.com

Baptized adults who have already received communion can be prepared for Confirmation through an abbreviated Adult Confirmation Program which can be found in the Spiritual Life section of our website. You can find more information here: https://stamelia.com/?page_id=1092

The Sacrament of Confirmation completes one’s initiation into the Catholic faith.  It is the policy in the Diocese of Buffalo that young people seeking Confirmation be prepared to do so after at least two years of adolescent faith formation in either a Catholic high school or parish religious education program.  Therefore, the sacrament will be celebrated when in eleventh grade, but no sooner than the spring of 10th grade in the context of the parish faith community.

Becoming a fully initiated member of the Roman Catholic Church is the personal choice of an individual. After dialogue with their family and parish ministers, some individuals may decide to delay this commitment to full initiation in the Church. It is important for those ministering to the individual to understand that people grow in faith in different ways. The length of time it takes for a person to be ready for full membership in the community depends “on the grace of God and on various circumstances.” (Introduction to the Rite of Christian Initiation #320)

Confirmation Sponsors: The sponsor teaches faith by personal example; leads by being a model; lends support in difficulties; is prepared to vouch for the sincerity of the candidate; and is actively affiliated with the parish sacramental process. In order to appropriately fulfill this role the sponsor must:

  • understand and take seriously his/her own baptismal promises
  • show his/her continued acceptance of the Gospel challenge
  • live a life of faith in and through a parish affiliation
  • have completed the initiation process (received Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation)
  • be at least sixteen (16) years of age
  • receive a letter of recommendation from his/her pastor
  • not be the parent of the candidate, but may be the baptismal sponsor of the candidate.

Confirmation Name: Confirmation candidates choose a Confirmation name as a sign of their new life in Christ. They many choose their baptismal name to learn about the saint they are named after or they may choose the name of a saint or blessed whose life they admire and wish to model. At times, the bishop will inquire during the ceremony why they selected their name. Candidates should be able to articulate their reason.  Additional information on Saint names can be found on Lifeteen.com