For many centuries, the Church has effectively used the stations of the cross to help people meditate on the sufferings of Jesus. Several individuals have offered beneficial meditations on the final sufferings of Jesus.
The "Way of the Cross" has been the "Father" of the idea for A Way of Grace. For Catholics, the sacraments are a channel of grace. We receive some sacraments often, others only once. So it has seemed to me that it would be beneficial to provide visual helps (similar to the stations of the cross) that would facilitate the average person in meditating on the sacraments.
Perhaps such visual aids can be incorporated into our church buildings in the future. Even at the present time, banners, posters, framed pictures could be used. Others may offer more profound meditations than I have, but for now, however, I trust that the reader will find this pamphlet beneficial and use it as a means to bring the sacraments into his/her daily experience. Parents will find that the home celebration will provide them with many teachable moments.
Those families who have computers will be able to find new programs coming on the market that will also help bring deep understanding of the sacraments to their families.
It is my hope and prayer that this pamphlet will open minds to a greater love of the Lord, who has given us such precious gifts as the seven sacraments.
I wish to thank Sr. Jean Marie VanDyke, SSMO, for her help and encouragement. A special thanks to Kim Cutsforth Armato, who designed the pictures that have been used for the sacraments.
I also wish to thank the Catholic Sentinel, which first published these meditations as a Lenten series.
As you make your pilgrimage through life, you will find that the sacraments are channels of grace.
As you encounter Jesus in these sacraments, you will come to know Him who is the way, the truth and the life.
You will grow to love the One who died for you.
You will learn to serve Him who loves you with an infinite love.
Sacrament of Baptism
Sacrament of Confirmation
Sacrament of the Blessed Eucharist
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Sacrament of Holy Orders
Sacrament of Marriage
Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick
Rev. W. Thomas Faucher
Vicar for Canonical Affairs
+Most Rev. Thomas J. Connolly, JCD
Bishop of Baker
July 25, 1997
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