What is 'baptism'?
The word 'baptism' comes from the Greek word 'baptizein' meaning to "immerse, plunge, or dip."
Baptism symbolises a transition from death to life/leaving the old behind and a new beginning/a washing away.
Baptism should not be entered into without some prior thought and reflection.
It is an outward sign of something that has happened, an internal response to a spiritual desire, a statement of intent and commitment.
It marks the first steps in a personal journey.
It is also a formal welcome into full time membership of the Christian community.
What happens in a baptism?
A typical baptism service will ask questions of parents, godparents, the candidates (if they are of an age to respond themselves), and other members of the family and friends to make sure that they fully understand what they are doing and their responsibilities.
Those taking part in a baptism service should be aware that these questions are asked before God and there is a commitment on each person’s part to uphold those promises made.
The person being baptised is often first anointed with the holy oil (catechumens), and then parents and godparents (or candidate if they are old enough to speak for themselves) make a profession of faith.
The essential part of Baptism consists of the priest/minister/pastor immersing the candidate in water once or pouring/sprinkling water on the candidate's head three times, while saying the words, "I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit."
The candidate is then anointed a second time in some traditions but this time with a different kind of holy oil (chrism).
Usually the candidate then receives a blessing and receives a lit candle to remind them they carry the light of Christ with them and He lights their path.
If you are already a member of a church, baptism is usually not a problem.
However, those parents with no or little connection with their local church may find things very different.
In many cases they will be refused by their local churches unless the parents become regular members. They may even have to attend preparation classes.
It isn't always as easy or as straight forward as people think.
Then there are are also those who would like to be baptised at a later stage in life but do not know who to turn to.
Order of St James priests will not place obstacles or conditions in the way of anyone who comes with a genuine desire to be baptised themselves, or have their children baptised. They will be baptised into the worldwide Christian family and be without any specific denominational bias.
The form of words used for the baptism will include the words, 'I baptise you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit', and these words are accepted as appropriate by most of the mainstream denominations.
Alternatives to Baptism:
(1) Dedication services can be appropriate for those who feel that they, in faith, cannot accept the principle of child baptism but wish to make a public declaration of their intent to bring up their new child in the Christian tradition.
There is no set form to this kind of service but may (or may not) contain all the elements of a 'traditional' service (readings, prayers, hymns and songs, psalms or poetry and a short talk).
The main focus would be on the promises made by the parents. OSJ priests are usually very happy to work with parents in putting together a dedication
(2) Thanksgiving services for the new life of a child, an adoption, or following a difficult birth may also be another alternative to consider.
This is a completely open form of liturgy in the sense of there are 'no rules' as to what needs to be included.
It should be a happy service that has something for everyone.
It is a good idea to plan a thanksgiving service with your OSJ (UK) priest as they will be able to advise you how to balance the sacramental integrity of the
service whilst keeping it an enjoyable family event.
Without exception everyone is called to their own special form of ministry by God, and that 'ordination' is just one of many forms of calling - all equally valuable, necessary and just as important. There are elements to be found in all forms of ministry that reflect the communal priesthood of all church members. Not only that, but there is no necessity to be 'ordained' in regard to most Christian ministry, or to be 'authorised' in some way. Ministry is and should always be a simple and natural response of faith and love. It is definitely not about recognition, personal power, prestige, control, authority or titles.
There is nothing 'magical' about being ordained - it confirms what already exists rather than it 'giving power to'. In truth, there isn't great deal more you can do once ordained that you couldn't already do before, although there seems to be a lot more paperwork involved. Those who are ordained will tell you it is rarely what they thought it would be. The clerical collar is nothing more than an invitation to a conversation about life and faith and holds no power in itself, and nor should it. It is no guarantee of 'ministry' either.
If you didn't have ministry before being ordained, wearing a clerical collar generally won't make things any different.
Ministry is all around us and we all have something to give and receive. Ministry is for all, by all, and in God alone.
Regardless of rank, title, qualification or position, all members of OSJ (UK) carry equal status (so don't expect any special treatment if you happen to be ordained). All OSJ (UK) members have their own God given mix of gifts, talents and skills, all are called to serve God and the Christian community in some way, and are all equally needed.
Membership is all about serving Christ and those about you, not servicing your own needs or ego.
OSJ (UK), along with many other provinces in OSJ Worldwide, offers training for those who wish to apply for ordination.
The priesthood is not the only form of ministry. It needs some serious consideration and a good deal of resilience and determination. Over 70% of applicants do not stay the course because they lack the conviction of their calling, strength of faith and the will power to see things through. These are the very things they need to have as a priest.
There are a number of pre-requisites all potential applicants should understand and take into account before applying.
1. All candidates should have existing defined ministries.
2. All candidates should have the support of those in their local community and in this respect references and testimonials will be requested by the Order's Executive Council. These references and testimonials will require authentication and further evidence may be requested. If there is no evidence of existing ministry or calling, the application will fail at this stage.
3. The (adult) dependents of candidates will be required to give their written support as part of the initial applications procedure and will most likely be required for interview along side the candidate. In certain circumstances they may be interviewed separately from the candidate. If there is no evidence of support, the application will fail at this stage.
4. The candidate will be required to declare any convictions, cautions and any relevant information whether actual, past, present or pending, as part of their application. This is a legal requirement and obligation. A failure to declare is a criminal offence. Failure to disclose will result in the application being immediately rejected and membership of OSJ (UK) being instantly withdrawn. It may also result in criminal prosecution.
5. Comprehensive and enhanced CRB checks will be required as a matter of course.
6. There will be several interviews as part of the applications process.
7. The first year's course work if successfully completed and agreed by the Order's Executive Council may lead to the candidate being ordained deacon if felt appropriate.
8. The second year's course work may similarly lead to the candidate being offered ordination to the priesthood.**
9. The candidate will undertake a probationary period 'in office' once ordained. This is for a minimum of a year, usually two years in practise, but can be up to 3 years at the discretions of the area bishop and/or Executive Council. We want evidence you are up to the role you are entrusted with.
10. Course work (distance learning) will be supplemented by supervised practical work and 'one to one' tutorials. All parts must be completed successfully. Some candidates may be asked to complete additional coursework where it is deemed beneficial and necessary.
11. Candidates will be responsible for obtaining recommended books and completing work within a reasonable time. This will be a test of discipline and resolve. There is no financial support offered by OSJ (UK).
12. Successful completion of coursework is no guarantee of ordination. The decision to ordain will rest independently and jointly with both the Executive Council and the Order's Bishops and Executive Bishop.
Lastly and so there are no misunderstandings, this process is geared towards non-stipendiary Episcopally ordained ministry in the community. It should complement and enhance existing ministry and not be seen as an end in itself.
Intending applicants must already be members of the MST (Ministry Support Team) OSJ (UK). Don't expect it to be easy. We want to see resilience.
** Parts of the course work may be off-set against relevant pre-existing qualification and experience.
Confirmation is appropriate when a person decides that they wish to take up for themselves the promises made on their behalf by their parents at the time of baptism and commit themselves to a faith centred life.
Getting confirmed is an sign of commitment, witness and testimony. It is an outward sign of an inner process.
Confirmation does not automatically bestow the gift/gifts of the Holy Spirit on people as some churches believe - they may even be already present and self-evident.
Providing a candidate can demonstrate their understanding of what confirmation is and asks of them, and can faithfully make a commitment, there is no reason why they cannot be confirmed by a bishop in the Order of St James.
The essential rite is the laying on of hands by the bishop and a short prayer, 'Confirm this thy servant (Name) with thy Holy Spirit,' or similar.
An anointing of oil may also form part of the confirmation rite along with any other appropriate local traditions.
Confirmation conducted by OSJ (UK) will be without denominational bias.
If you are interested in confirmation, please do contact the Order of St James office or one of the OSJ (UK) members.
OSJ (UK) does not prescribe any single form of liturgy as being superior to another, and that even includes our own examples (see 'Printable Services').
Liturgies/services are prescribed purely on the basis of being appropriate to the situation and need.
This is what the Order of St James 'Rule of Simplicity' states:
Liturgy, the sacraments and worship.
Regrettably, denominations have caused and still cause divisions and barriers within the body of Christ.
This is not compatible with the example and ministry of Christ as outlined in the Gospels or the words of St Paul regarding the one-ness of the body of Christ (the one true and unified church) as found in 1 Corinthians 12 for example.
The Order and its members will continue to ignore and break through the barriers the denominational churches have created by taking the unconditional love of God to wherever it is needed.
This will be done in a way which brings glory to God, strengthens and makes whole the body and is done within the bonds of Christian love and in obedience to the will of God.
Every effort should be made by all members to meet the discerned needs of all those they come into contact with, whatever their personal denominational affiliations.
A member’s own personal preferences are to be regarded as of no account when it comes to ministry.
Christ met our needs unconditionally and all members will reflect that grace in their dealings with others.
Members may however pass work on to other members of the Order if they feel that they cannot give 100% support to any requests made.
Since the Order is not bound by denominational traditions, its members are free to access and use whatever forms of sacramental or other liturgies that are appropriate to the needs of the people they serve.
The exclusive promotion of any one denominational form of liturgy or practice within the Order is contrary to the founding principles of the Order and is expressly forbidden.
Similarly, the Order will not be bound by any traditions or canons of ‘the church’ that deny access to the sacraments or liturgy to any person who approaches them with respect and in faith, however limited.
If these two conditions are met, all are free to receive any of the sacraments of the church and shall not be denied them.
Because of the servant nature of Christ as exemplified by the washing of the disciples’ feet, (ordained) members may out of humility adopt the practice of taking their communion of both kinds after all others have received.
(1) Twelve Christian basics of marriage:
1. marriage is a calling and sacrament, not a matter of temporary convenience, but instead is intended for the life of both partners,
2. marriage, once entered into and established, cannot be undone,
3. marriage is between a man and a woman (as physically defined at birth)
4. marriage is to the benefit of society as a whole in that it provides a good foundation for social stability built on relational boundaries, mutual trust and integrity.
5. marriage is intended for the procreation of children (even if that involves medical intervention)
6. and mutual comfort. It is a self-contained unit where everything that is needed for its purpose can be found,
7. children are a gift of God entrusted into the protective care and stewardship of both parents and the Christian community.
8. Marriage, or anything described as 'marriage', between those of the same sex (as defined by birth, self-determination or by other choice or process) is contrary to scripture.
Same sex couples must look beyond their union if they wish to have children and that simply works against the whole principle of marriage.
9. The deliberate termination of life (e.g. abortion, euthanasia, etc.) is contrary to scripture.
10. Sexually or physically intimate relationships between same sex couples (as defined above) is contrary to scripture.
11. Sexually or physically intimate relationships outside of marriage, regardless of gender, are contrary to Holy Scripture.
12. Surrogacy is therefore not within the scriptural boundaries of biblically based marriage although adoption is.
The implications of these statements are manifold and you should really give them some serious thought.
Marriage is not for everyone.
No two marriages will be the same and you shouldn't judge your marriage against someone else's. It's God's gift to you and it is unique.
Don't want someone else's marriage or try to be like another couple. You have your own path to tread.
(A priest/minister/pastor is not obliged to marry a couple if he or she feel the couple is making an error of judgement or is unprepared or is approaching marriage with wrong intent or coercion is being applied.)
(2) Marriage Vows
The current form of marriage vows used in the church were first written in the early middle ages and are a development of those found in the Sarum Rite. It was a time when life was often very short and hard, sickness and ill health abounded, many women died in childbirth, and there was little protection for those who found themselves destitute. There was nothing particularly romantic in these words as they were meant to be understood in plain and simple terms. They were meant to be understood as straightforward and unchangeable statements of fact. Even the words, 'to love and to cherish,' were nothing more than an instruction to be faithful and caring.
I, (name of husband/wife), take you, (name of wife/husband),
to be my (wife/husband),
to have and to hold
from this day forward;
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part;
according to God's holy law.
In the presence of God I make this vow.
You got what you got and that was it. There was no question of divorce.
In spite of what the current changes in law suggest, the Christian viewpoint hasn't changed.
Marriage is still between a man and a woman, and is intended to be for life.
The vows remain a statement of that fact: - in modern commercial terms you might say 'sold as seen - buyer beware - no returns - no refunds - no guarantees - all sales are final'.
So, no divorce.
(3) The practicalities of marriage.
For those who are getting married I caution both to be aware of the following:
get it right, marriage is heaven,
get it wrong, marriage is hell.
A marriage is conceived well before a wedding, but a wedding does not make a marriage.
Marriage is not a game and not to be undertaken on a whim of romance. There is a massive difference between 'Love' and 'Lust' and it is easy to confuse the two when in the early years of a relationship.
Great sex (or any other kind) is not a sufficiently good reason for getting married. Marriage is and needs so much more. Don't equate or mistake sex with or for 'love'.
Don't make assumptions either. Two people 'in love' don't automatically think the same about things in life. Ask the obvious questions and be sure about what you are getting yourself into.
Getting married and staying married are two very different things.
Marriage is rarely ‘happy ever after’. There will be many ups and downs and marriage isn’t always an easy path. Marriage is absolutely what you make it or what you let it become. It’s no one else’s fault if it goes wrong, it’s down to you both. It is also not just one person’s fault if it fails. It takes two to fall out and have a row.
Marriage is about relying on your partner and not looking for sympathy elsewhere. It’s your marriage and up to you to sort it out. If you need to go looking elsewhere for 'support and comfort' then you have already betrayed your marriage vows.
Marriage is intended to be totally self-contained.
Marriage is not above receiving some occasional good advice from family and friends, but you should look at their marriages as to determining if their advice is sound or not.
Marriage is not primarily about ‘happiness’. That is something ethereal that is hard to quantify. It is different to different people.
Happiness depends entirely on how you interpret the things that happen to you. An insulin dependent diabetic may bemoan their medical problems but someone in late stage Parkinson’s would happily change place with them. A blind man would happily pay thousands of pounds for new glasses if he could just see again, whereas I doubt you would be happy paying that much, even if they were designer frames.
‘Happiness’, contrary to popular opinion, isn’t ‘a right’ or something to be expected or demanded. You have to work hard for it.
You get what you get and need to make the best of it.
For many people, if they put as much effort into making life work for them rather than expend the huge amounts of effort complaining, life would actually be a lot better for them. Look at what you have rather than what you don't have, and be thankful.
The marriage vows themselves don’t mention ‘happiness’. That is something you have to create for ‘yourselves’ rather than for ’yourself’. It’s a subtle but important difference. Marriage is about ‘us’ not ‘me’.
Marriage is about the other person and their needs. There is no room for selfishness in marriage. Selfishness will destroy families and friendships, and it will destroy marriages just as quickly.
Holding grudges and wrongs is an act of selfishness.
Constantly bringing other people’s faults and mistakes up is selfish too and it shows a distinct lack of forgiveness. It is also a form of emotional blackmail and control.
They are both symptoms and indicators of things going wrong in a marriage and they need to be dealt with. If you don’t deal them they will ultimately destroy what you have.
The bible teaches us that we are not perfect. That would be something we should all remember. We can be wrong, we can make mistakes, and we can misunderstand or misread situations.
Thinking we are right all the time puts us on a par with God, and God we aren’t! If you are not sure about that then try walking on water, calming storms, healing the sick, making the blind to see and raising the dead.
A little humility goes a long way in bringing a failing marriage back from the brink.
(Extracts of lectures and notes by Fr. Giles Dimock OP, and not indicated as being copyright from the original source. This is by far the best and most understandable explanation we have come across.)
'Jesus Christ gave his Apostles the power to forgive sins. The Sacrament is also known as the Sacrament of Conversion, Forgiveness, Penance, or Reconciliation.
The sacrament involves three steps: the penitent's contrition or sorrow for his sins, the actual confession to a priest and absolution, and then penance or restitution for your sins. The experience leads one to an interior conversion of the heart. Jesus describes the process of conversion and penance in the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-24).
The penitent confesses his sins to the priest in the confessional, and the priest then gives absolution to the repentant soul, making the Sign of the Cross, and saying the words "I absolve you from your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."
It is Christ Jesus through the priest who forgives your sins. As the penitent must make restitution or satisfaction for his sins, the priest gives a penance to the forgiven one, usually prayer, fasting, or almsgiving (I Peter 4:8).
Confession gives one a wonderful sense of freedom and peace from the burden of sin. Sorrow, affliction, and a desire for conversion follow the remorse of sin in those with a contrite heart. Some believe we can confess our sins privately to God. But man is a social being.
The humbling experience of unburdening your soul to someone, of exposing your weak nature, and then being accepted for who you are and what you have done by having your sins forgiven brings one an incredible sense of relief! The experience brings a sense of gratitude to our generous Lord for his love, compassion and mercy.'
You should be aware that confession may lead to absolution for sin, but you will still have to live with the consequences of your actions.
If you are interested in learning more about confession, please do contact the Order of St James (UK) office or one of the OSJ (UK) members.
In dealing with pastoral matters, 'confidentiality' is a vital requirement in all dealings with people, especially when it comes to the sacrament of confession.
Any matters held as 'confidential' may not be shared with anyone else under any circumstances.
This sometimes conflicts with the duty of care that OSJ (UK) members have towards others, so these guidelines have been issued.
1. anything shared 'in confidence' must remain 'in confidence' and not be shared with any other person(s) under any circumstances
2. if there is any doubt as to whether something has been shared 'in confidence' or not, it should always be assumed it is 'confidential'
3. you can always ask if any matters to be or have been discussed are to be held 'in confidence' or may be shared (and with whom)
1. anything shared in confidence shall remain so unless this puts the person sharing that information, or another, at risk of injury or harm
2. or unless permission is given to share this information with a person or persons in a better position to be able to offer advice, help or resolution
3. this particularly applies to those in training
1. if there is any possibility of a disclosure being made which may involve sharing information with others, then the person sharing that information needs to be advised accordingly
2. notes should not be taken or information recorded unless prior permission is given - these are subject to the provisions of the Data Protections Act (1998)
1. this is a sacramental matter and is restricted to those ordained or authorised
2. the content of any confession is held in sacred trust and may not be shared with any other person(s) under any circumstances unless prior permission has been given
1. the granting of absolution may be conditional
2. or even withheld until appropriate
3. whilst absolution may be offered, the consequences of sin still remain and have to be dealt with appropriately.
This is a lot to consider. If you can't remember it all, at least try to remember these key seven facts about marriage:
1. Get marriage right, it is heaven. Get it wrong, marriage is hell.
2. Marriage is what you make it or let it become. It is your responsibility, no one else's.
3. You can live with people but you can’t always be married to them.
Likewise a wedding doesn't make a marriage.
4. Divorce is never ‘a fresh start’. There are always consequences that have to be lived with and you can't undo or hide from the past.
5. Marriage is sacrificial, and is much an act of faith as it is of trust. There is no room for selfishness in marriage.
6. Love and lust should never be confused. Being 'in love' is very different from 'loving' someone.
7. Marriage is a calling of God to a sacramental life, between one man and one woman (as defined physically at birth), intended for life, and for the procreation of children.
Having children is not something to rush into either. They don’t fix things, they tend to test things to their limit. If your relationship isn’t secure when you have children they will find every weak spot and use it against you.
Divorce is rarely the desired 'solve all' when things go wrong. It is a misconception that you can walk away from marriage (or any relationship) as if nothing ever happened, and start over. There is nothing further from the truth as the past has consequences that can’t be hidden, wounds that refuse to heal, deep scars that ache and hurts that reappear without being invited. Your previous relationship cannot be escaped and it will haunt and shape your new ones. There will be guilt and doubts that just won’t go away.
The other thing that people don’t realise is that divorce will divide families and friends, and the ripples of divorce will travel far and wide in ways that can never be anticipated. Divorce in never just between a husband and wife.
The damage to their children is perhaps the worst kind, particularly in the way it affects their ability to trust. If you can’t trust the people who say they love you then just who can you trust? The effect on their ability to hold and maintain future relationships is significant and lasts a lifetime.
Getting married is a huge responsibility and it is not to be undertaken lightly. It needs great forethought and a life time’s dedication. The old saying, 'marry in haste, repent at leisure,' still holds true.
A good marriage will allow both husband and wife to flourish as a couple and as individuals. It is about mutual trust rather than control.
Regrettably, those who seek to take control of their relationship will destroy it.
'Happy ever after' is a work in progress and doesn't magically happen on its own. It takes a lot of effort and dedication. Simply put, marriage is what you make it or let it become and the responsibility lies with you.
Anointing the Sick
The healing ministry is one of the almost forgotten or ignored ministries of the Christian community, probably because it challenges most Christians in their faith.
They simply struggle with the concept that God has empowered them to heal the sick and raise the dead in His Name. Most Christians can't get their head around this and their faith falters.
Yet, the bible states implicitly that as a Christian community we are to do this.
The Epistle of St James, chapter 5, verses 13 -16, spells it out for us.
The Prayer of Faith
13 Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise.
14 Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.
15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.
16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
There are lots of books you can read on Christian healing, and you can go on courses, attend seminars and prayer meetings and bible studies about healing, but it comes down to one basic thing: do you trust and believe God will answer your prayer?
There is no requirement as to how much faith you need. Just do it and believe God will honour your trust in Him.
Olive oil will do quite nicely when it comes to 'anointing' but use what you have to hand so long as it is hygienically/medically suitable. (A small sealable container with oil soaked cotton wool is often more convenient to use than having to deal with pouring or using an anointing spoon.)
If you need words and instructions then the following form is traditional, but it's not the only way of doing this.
1. Anoint of the forehand and hands of the person with oil which should have been previously blessed.
('Dear Father, may you + bless, consecrate and make holy this oil, according to our need this day. Amen')
2. Then say prayerfully, "Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit.
May the Lord, who frees you from sin, save you and raise you up."
(Other prayers may be used.)
As a temporary emergency measure, in exceptional circumstances all OSJ (UK) members may provisionally and conditionally administer last rites on request in the event of a priest or licensed eucharistic minister being unavailable.
We may find ourselves in the presence of one who is dying and be asked if we can give last rites (viaticum). We cannot refuse this request given that time may be very short.
There is no need to be afraid of giving last rites and there is a short form which can be conducted by any member of OSJ (UK) but it does need some preparation and it will be useful to download the Self Administered Communion document which deals with the practicalities and administration of communion in more detail.
The administration of last rites has six distinctive parts.
1. Penitential Rite:
This can take the form of a confession of sin or be simply asking the person awaiting or preparing for death to repeat after you:
Lord have mercy.
Response: Lord have Mercy (if it can be given)
Christ have mercy.
Response: Christ have Mercy
Lord have mercy.
Response: Lord have mercy
(may be given in ecclesial absentium under active OSJ (UK) emergency measures)
May Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ,
strengthen you in all goodness,
and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life.
If you hear confession, it is to be held in priestly confidence. Please read the page on 'OSJ Confidentiality'.
2. Words of Comfort: a suitable reading may follow: John 6:54-58, John 14:6; John 14:23; John 15:4; I Cor. 11:26; 1 John 4:16.
3. Ask the person to repeat the Apostles' Creed after you: it is a reminder of the basis of our faith. If no credible response can be given, it may be read instead if felt appropriate.
The Apostles Creed
I believe in God the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.
He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary
Under Pontius Pilate He was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again.
He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.
3. Prayer: recite the Lord's Prayer. Roman Catholics may request 'Hail Mary' to be included afterwards.
4. Communion: when the dying person is ready, communion may be offered.
It may be that they are unable to swallow and a wafer/host may be dipped in wine and touched on the lips of the person. This is sufficient.
Likewise, a very small piece of wafer or host may be placed on a spoon with a little wine and administered in that manner.
If the elements need to be consecrated, and no priest is available, use the following form under our Emergency Measures policy:-
'Dear Father, may you bless, sanctify and make holy this bread and this wine, according to our need,' and make the sign of the cross over the elements.
"This is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Happy are those who are called to his supper."
Response: "Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed." (if it can be given - if it cannot then say it for the person)
"The Body of Christ." (offer the bread if the person is able to receive)
"The Blood of Christ." (offer the wine if the person is able to receive)
or (see italicised notes above)
"The body and blood of Christ."
5. Prayer for protection: after they have received communion, say: "May the Lord Jesus protect you and lead you to eternal life." If you have consecrated oil, the person's forehead may be anointed.
6. Commendation/blessing/closing prayers:
conclude with prayer and blessing. using these or similar words:
We commend to you, O Lord! the soul of this your servant N, and beseech you, O Jesus Christ, Redeemer of the world, that, as in your love for him/her, you became man, so now you would grant to admit him/her into the number of the blessed.
May all the Saints and Elect of God, who, on earth, suffered for the sake of Christ, intercede for him ( her) ; so that, when freed from the prison of his ( her) body, he ( she) may be admitted into the kingdom of heaven: through the merits of our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, world without end. Amen.
May the blessing of God Almighty the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost descend upon you and remain with you always.
(A lay person would place his/her hand on the person or make the sign of the cross on himself.)
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Serving Christ and community.
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