There are seven Sacraments, instituted by Jesus Christ, celebrated in the Catholic Church: Baptism, Confirmation, the Eucharist, Penance, the Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony.
The seven Sacraments touch all stages and all the important moments of the Christian life; they give birth and increase, healing and mission to the Christian’s life of faith. (CCC 1210). The Second Vatican Council said that ‘the purpose of the sacraments is to sanctify men (make us holy), to build up the body of Christ, and finally, to give worship to God’ (SC, 59).
The Cathedral parish is pleased to celebrate all seven of these Sacraments and to prepare people to receive them.
Sacraments of Initiation
‘The Sacraments of Christian Initiation- Baptism, Confirmation, and the Eucharist- lay the foundations of every Christian life… the faithful are born anew by Baptism, strengthened by the sacrament of Confirmation, and receive in the Eucharist the food of eternal life. By means of these sacraments of Christian initiation, they thus receive in increasing measures the treasures of divine life and advance toward the perfection of charity.’ (Catechism, 1212)
If you would like your child to be baptised at the Cathedral, please contact the Cathedral office and ask for details of the next parish Baptism Preparation Programme. This two part course, held on Saturday mornings, is offered throughout the year and once you have completed it you will be able to arrange a date for your child’s baptism.
Eucharist (First Holy Communion)
We offer short courses to help children in the Parish to prepare to receive Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Classes usually begin at the end of February each year for school children in Year 3 or above. All children who would like to receive this Sacrament are welcome, regardless of the school they attend. For more information, please contact the parish office or speak to one of our priests after Mass.
The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated by the Bishop here at the Cathedral on Pentecost Sunday each year. We offer courses to help young people (aged 14+) and adults prepare for Confirmation throughout the year. For more information, please contact the parish office or speak to one of our priests after Mass.
Sacraments of Healing
’The Lord Jesus Christ, physician of our souls and bodies, who forgave the sins of the paralytic and restored him to bodily health, has willed that his Church continue, in the power of the Holy Spirit, His work of healing and salvation, even among her own members. This is the purpose of the two sacraments of healing: the Sacrament of Penance (Reconciliation/Confession) and the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick.’ (Catechism, 1421).
Through confidential confession of our sins to a priest, we receive forgiveness from Christ and are reconciled with God and the Church. The Cathedral has a daily rota which ensures that at least one priest is available to hear confessions during advertised hours. You can find the schedule on our ‘Services’ page. Alternatively, you can call or drop into Cathedral house and make a Confession by appointment.
Anointing of the Sick
Anointing of the Sick is for Catholics who are sick or facing life threatening situations (like major surgery or a serious medical emergency), as well as those who many be facing imminent death. It strengthens the sick person, uniting them more closely to Christ and gives them comfort, peace and the forgiveness of sins. If you or a loved one is need of Anointing, a priest will be pleased to visit you. Please speak to one of our priests after Mass or contact the parish office to arrange a time
Sacraments of Mission
’Two other sacraments, Holy Orders and Matrimony, are directed towards the salvation of others…they confer a particular mission in the Church to serve to build up the people of God. Those who receive the Sacrament of Holy Orders are consecrated in Christ’s name ‘to feed the Church by the word and grace of God.’ On their part, ‘Christian spouses are fortified and, as it were, consecrated for the duties and dignity of their state by a special sacrament.’ (Catechism 1534, 1535)
Marriages at the Cathedral are normally celebrated at 12 noon and 2pm on designated Saturdays throughout the year. Marriages on weekdays are permitted on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at 11am and 2.30pm only. All marriage celebrations are arranged in the first instance by appointment with the Cathedral Dean or one of the Assistant Priests at the Cathedral. An appointment can be made via the parish office or you can speak to a priest after Mass.
Please Note: Diocesan Law requires a minimum of six months notice prior to your wedding. This is to enable all the necessary arrangements and preparations to be made. All couples without exception have to attend the Marriage Care preparation course. If you or your intended spouse have been married before, a booking cannot be made for your wedding until such time it can be verified that you are free to marry in the Catholic Church.
Over its 175 years, the Cathedral parish has been pleased to celebrate many priestly and episcopal ordinations in its beautiful setting. If you feel that the Lord might be calling you to serve Him as a priest, please contact the Diocesan Vocations Director who will be pleased to journey with you and help you discern this call.
Diocesan Vocations Director: Fr Neil Peoples