Sacraments

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Baptism

Baptism is the beginning of a lifelong journey of commitment to follow God and it is the first step we take to become members of the Church – the Body of Christ. This first Sacrament of Initiation into the Faith is a serious step and so there is a need for preparation for Baptism.

Parents of children who will be baptized must be registered, active members of St. Stephen for 3 months before they can begin the baptismal process. The Rite of Baptism for children emphasizes the importance of faithfulness on the part of Parents and Godparents in accepting the responsibility of training them in the practice of the faith.

Please call Sister Linda Gaupin, the Baptism Coordinator, at the church office to make arrangements. Adults wanting to be baptized should contact the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) Coordinator at the Church office.

First Holy Communion

The Church invites us to celebrate the Eucharist and to receive Holy Communion “often” and “worthily” (CCC 1389). The “often” part is encouraged because the reception of Communion strengthens our bond with one another, nourishes God’s life within us, and incorporates us more deeply into the life of Jesus (CCC 1324). Thus, it is the ongoing Sacrament of Initiation (CCC 1322). The “worthily” part is a little more complicated.

For the youth, this Sacrament is celebrated when a child is able to understand God’s presence among us and His Son’s special presence in the Eucharist, the community welcomes the child to the Lord’s Table of communion.
The sacraments of Reconciliation and First Eucharist (First Holy Communion) are celebrated in the 2nd grade after having completed 1st grade religious education. These 2 consecutive years are considered First Year Eucharist and Second Year Eucharist. Sacramental preparation for receiving First Eucharist involves regular attendance at class, mandatory parent meetings, and a sacramental retreat day for the students, as well as several large-group class meetings. The Sacrament of First Eucharist is celebrated in the Spring, after Easter.

Please contact Gigi Santiago, our Director of Faith Formation for more information about the requirements for children receiving this Sacrament for the first time.

Adults who would like to receive this Sacrament for the first time should contact the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) Coordinator at the Church office.

Reconciliation

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is one of the most unique and beautiful aspects of Catholicism. Jesus Christ, in His abundant love and mercy, established the Sacrament of Confession, so that we as sinners can obtain forgiveness for our sins and reconcile with God and the Church. The sacrament “washes us clean,” and renews us in Christ.

For our youth, this Sacrament is celebrated along with the Sacrament of First Eucharist (First Holy Communion) in the 2nd grade after having completed 1st-grade religious Faith Formation. Contact Gigi Santiago, our Director of Faith Formation, for the requirements for children receiving this Sacrament for the first time.

For adults who haven’t been to Confession in a while, the Catholic Church wants to welcome you back and invites you to participate in this beautiful sacrament of healing. Take a step in faith. You’ll be surprised about how free you feel after taking part in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. So many Catholics describe incredible feelings of peace, joy, relief, and love that they never expected. Jesus is calling you to experience His mercy in this way too.

Confessions are heard every Saturday from 4:00 – 4:30 pm. You can schedule confession by calling the Parish office at 407-699-5683.

Confirmation

Confirmation deepens our baptismal life that calls us to be missionary witnesses of Jesus Christ in our families, neighborhoods, society, and the world. Anointed by the Holy Spirit at Confirmation, Catholic Christians strengthen their bond with the Church and become better equipped to carry out the Church’s mission of love and service.

Preparation for Confirmation for our youth is a 2-year course of study that begins when the student enters the 9th grade (Level I). Classes continue through the 10th grade (Level II) with the Sacrament of Confirmation being conferred in the Spring. Students must be re-registered for Level 2 upon completion of Level 1. Preparation involves regular attendance at classes, mandatory parent meetings, student-performed community service, and an overnight retreat during Confirmation Level 2 year. Students can prepare for Confirmation in this high school program up to 18 years of age. Contact Laurie DeLuca, our High School Faith Formation Coordinator, for more information about the program requirements to prepare for this Sacrament.

Adults who have been baptized in the Catholic Faith and received the Sacrament of Eucharist, but for whatever reason have not received the Sacrament of Confirmation, and are interested in doing so, should contact the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) Coordinator, to register for the preparation classes for Adult Confirmation.

Marriage

From all of us at St. Stephen Catholic Community, Congratulations! To receive the sacrament of Marriage, we ask that you be a registered, active member of St. Stephen for at least six months. After this time frame, a 6-month Marriage prep course can begin.

Please call Sister Linda Gaupin at 407-699-5683, ext. 251 to discuss.

Religious Vocation: Priesthood or Consecrated Life

If you or someone you know is considering a religious vocation and would like more information please speak with a parish priest or contact the Parish Office for more information.

Anointing of the Sick

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is the Church’s sacrament for those who are sick and aging or dying and is a sacred moment when we pray for God’s grace to strengthen someone who is suffering from any form of illness. We invite you to call 407-699-5683 to make arrangements and please be assured of our prayers.