Our Sacramental Program is a parish based program preparing children to receive the Sacraments of: -
First Holy Communion
The children can begin the program at a minimum age of seven years. Their parents are asked to renew their commitment of faith they made at Baptism and then present their children for the program. They promise to bring their child to Mass each week where they can join in the children’s liturgy.
We begin the program each year in September with an introductory meeting for the parents. This meeting explains how it is also an opportunity for both parents and children to learn about their own commitment to the faith whether they are regularly attending Mass or not up to this point
Six workbook sessions follow with the children’s catechists over the next ten months. The children celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation during Advent followed First Communion in May or June.
The program is a three way relationship between the church, home and schools, primarily led by the parish and greatly supported by the schools and families. Catholic children who attend other schools are welcome to join us.
The children are expected to attend Mass weekly. If children do not fulfil this commitment parents will be asked to postpone their child’s reception of the Sacraments until the following year.
The Sacramental Program is not the end of a child’s journey of faith but rather the beginning of a life of faith which will encourage them to participate fully with us as a parish and family of the Church. It is a big commitment and we want to help parents and families prepare for this as much as we can.
Bringing children to church.
Children are never too young to bring to church. Unfortunately many parents worry that their child may be disruptive in church; babies cry whilst toddlers ask questions and want to wander round, but this is all perfectly normal.
Here at St Mary's we want you and your child to feel welcome and part of our community. We hope the following information and hints are useful and will make coming to church easier and more enjoyable for you and your child.
Baby changing and feeding; there are facilities for nappy changing and bottle warming in the house through the sacristy. Someone will direct you.