[Image: Seven Sacraments Altarpiece by Rogier van der Weyden, c. 1448.]

by Earl Leonard Sebastian

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Hebrew 11:6

This article is dedicated in honor of St. Faustina, the patron saint of the current World Youth Day, where many pilgrims and devotees have come to celebrate the faith.

We are proud to say that we are Catholics: we go to mass every Sunday, pray the Angelus and Rosary, but is there indeed a measurement of our faith? Are we aware of the Seven Sacraments that we practice in the Sanctuario.

Just for the information of all, the Seven Sacraments include Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony. We literally practice our faith from womb to tomb. The Sanctuario de San Antonio is blessed that all seven sacraments are being taught and applied in the parish. It is not just empowered by the graces of God, but also the closeness and tight-knit bond of the parish as one Faith family and community.

For the kids, there is Antioch or Magnikids to initially guide them about their faith and God’s Words. As they grow up, there is Antioch, then the Single Young Adults (SYA) and the Faith in Action. In between, there is Confirmation, which years later will be for the sacrament of Matrimony. Many weddings are being held in the Parish and it is a special sacrament of which the marriage is being blessed by the God rather than the lavishness.

Every week, the sacrament of penance or going to confession and celebrating the Eucharist or the Holy Mass is done in the Parish. It is a gathering of the community and celebration of the sacrifice of Christ for us. It is also an opportunity for us to reconcile ourselves with God and to reflect deeply on our actions. We cannot blame ourselves for some few actions and errors we admit that we are just humans and often give in to temptation.

The Holy Orders is a special calling from God and the Church. Around twice a year, many men are called to serve but only have been chosen to serve in the Parish. One of the most special sacraments is the anointing of the sick, which is usually given to those who are of age and are in danger due to sickness or critical illnesses. These are all being practiced in Sanctuario of which the Parish community is privileged of having the rights and opportunities to all of these.

Together, in the Year of Mercy, let us remember the sacrifice of God as we continue to spread His love and peace to everyone.