Catholic Christianity Practices

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  • Created on: 26-04-18 13:21

The sacramental nature of reality

What is it?

  • A sacrament is 'an outward sign of an inward gift, instituted by Christ, In order to give grace to a human being.'
  • Baptism, Eucharist, Confirmation, Reconciliation, Anointing of sick, Matrimony, H.O.
  • The sacramental nature of reality means finding the Grace of God within the physical world.


  • Baptism - sanctifying grace to the soul, cleanses original sin and links the soul to God's love.
  • Confirmation - increases sanctifying grace & strengthens their faith to become mature
  • Eucharist - unites people to Christ, his presence is consumed in consecrated bread& wine.
  • Reconciliation - Removes spiritual illness of sin & strengthens against the temptation to sin.
  • Anointing of the sick - Gives strength in illness and comforts in suffering
  • Matrimony - Provides couple with grace and strength
  • Holy Orders -  A man fufills vocation from God.

SOWA - 'They give birth and increase, healing and mission to the Christian's life of faith' - CCC 1210.

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Liturgical Worship

What is it?

  • Liturgical worship is the structured public service of worship followed in churches by Catholic Christians.
  • Brings God and Catholics together through Jesus
  • The ceremonies in liturgical worship help redeem Catholics, save them from sin and make them holy, more loving and more like God.


  • Unites Catholics to pray together
  • Public worship helps Christians to achieve a deeper understanding of the Bible, the life of Jesus and Christian teachings.
  •  It also enables those who receive Holy Communion to welcome Jesus into their hearts.

SOWA - "When two or three are gathered in my name, I am there." - Matthew 18:20

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The Mass

The Introductury rites (Gathering, Greeting, Penetential Rite, Gloria and Collect)

Gathering of congregation, sign of cross, priest greets everyone in Christ's name & wears vestments (show that presence of God is there), Penetential rite (Catholics think about their sins & ask for forgiveness), Gloria said/sung to praise God (Sunday or special feast days)

The liturgy the word

Bible reading, then homily by priest/deacon, Nicene Creed is said on Sunday&Feast days, prayer of the faithful (Bidding prayers, Intercessions or Universal prayers) close the LOTW.

The liturgy of Eucharist

Catholics meet Christ. Bread and wine are brought to altar, Priest says Eucharistic prayer of thanksgiving where bread and wine transubstantiate, Communion Rite takes place.

The concluding rites

Priest greets, blesses and dismisses people so that they use grace recieved in mass to build kingdom of God's love in the world.

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Funeral Rite

What is it?

  • The liturgical ceremonies carried out when a Catholic dies is known as the funeral rite
  • Although they seem sorrowful it is also a celebration as the individual has begun their journey to eternal life hopefully in heaven.
  • Three types of funeral celebrations are:
    • the vigil of the deceased (home/church) - Day before funeral, deceased is laid out & visited by relatives/friends. Service of prayers, songs & homily is conducted by priest.
    • the main funeral liturgy (in church) - Mass or just LOTW, Bible reading will focus on mystery of death and deceased person's life.
    • Rite of committal and commendation (cemetery/crematorium) - prayer of commendation in main funeral liturgy in church but final rite of committal and commendation take place in cemetery.

Importance - Pray for soul to go to heaven and live eternal life with God

SOWA - 'The Church...accompanies him at his journey's end, in order to surrender him into his Father's hands.' - CCC 1683

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What is it?

Prayer is the communication with God. It is a form of worship which allows individuals to share life in conversion with God. It can be done:

  • Privately/publicly
  • alone or with other
  • silently or with words
  • speaking to God (actively) or listening to God (receptively)


  • Adoration - Worshiping God, recognising Him and that we are His creatures.
  • Thanksgiving - Expressing gratitude and love to God
  • Repentance - Confessing sins and asking for forgiveness to God
  • Intercession - Praying on someone elses behalf

SOWA - 'Prayer in my opinion is nothing else than a close sharing between friends; it means taking time to frequently to be alone with him who we know loves us.' - St Teresa of Avila

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Popular forms of piety

What is it?

  • AKA devotion & non-liturgical worship is celebration or worship of God which is not part of the official public liturgical of the Church (doesn't follow a specific structure/order)
  • Vatican II teaches that 'spiritual not limited solely to participation in the Liturgy'. This means Catholic Church encourages Catholics to take part in other practices beyond church services that express spiritual life and offer worship to God.


  • Rosary - Helps catholics meditate on the grace of God
  • Stations of the Cross - May be used on Fridays especially in Lent (Jesus died on a Friday)
  • Eucharistic Adoration - Focuses people on prayer in a parish

SOWA - 'the religious sense of the Christian people has always found expression in various forms of piety' - CCC 1674

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What is it?

  • Pilgrimages - A journey to a religiously significant place with a spiritual purpose
  • Purposes range from literally 'walking in the footsteps of Jesus' or opportunity to ask for forgiveness of sins.
  • An act of devotion or refreshes and renews faith


  • Catholics may go to places connected to Jesus e.g. Holy Land (birth, ministry, crucifiction and ressurection) or Mount Tabol (transfiguration) allows people to connect to God and have a better understanding of him.
  • Places connected to Mary e.g. Lourdes, Fatima, Knock and Guadalupe which are linked to Marian apparitions (where people belived she appeared).
  • Places connected to apostles e.g. St Peters Basilica as it is built over the tomb of apostle Paul.

SOWA - 'Pilgrimages evoke our earthly journey toward to heaven and are traditionally very special occassions for renewal in prayer' - CCC 2691

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Catholic Social Teachings

What is it?

CST reflects the teaching of showing love to our neighbours. CST is concerned with how a communtiy should provide justice, peace and reconcilliation. The seven themes of CST are:

  • Sacredness of life and dignity of human beings
  • Call to family, community and participation
  • Human rights and responsibility to protect them
  • Preferential right for the poofr and vunrable
  • Dignity or right and right of workers
  • Solidarity of all people as one global family
  • Stewardship and care for God's creation

Importance - CAFOD carry our works of mercy wherever there is a need across the world. They raise awareness, are there in times of crisis and are rooted in the catholic community.

SOWA - Peace is not merely the absence of is rightly and appropriately called an enterprise of justice.' - Gaudiem est Spes Ch 5: 78.

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Catholic Mission and Evangelism

What is it?

  • Catholic mission is being sent to others to bring them the Gospel of Jesus. It reflects Trinity.
  • Jesus sent the apostles into the world to 'make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.' Matthew 28:19-20

Churches Evangalisation:

  • Locally: parish can engage with other christian churches to live out Gospel message of love
  • Nationally: National Catholic publications e.g The Catholic Times are used by church for evangelisation
  • Globally: Church lives out Gospel in work of international charities e.g. CAFOD

Individual Catholics:

  • Locally: Choice of career and carry out vocation from God which embodies love of Christ for the world in a specific way
  • Nationally: May speak at or attend national events e.g. conferences
  • Globally: May write for or use global media to demonstrate love for God
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