Holy Sacraments

More properly termed holy mysteries, the Church's entire life is one of sacrament. In the mysteries, the Christian is united with God, becoming a partaker of the divine nature (II Peter 1:14). With all the sacraments, God makes his presence known in his divine energies, using physical means to convey Himself to His people.

There are seven generally recognized sacraments, though the number has never been fixed dogmatically by the Church. Two are sacraments of initiation into the Church, Baptism and Chrismation. Baptism and Christmation are usually administered together. Baptism by triple immersion is participation in the Death and Resurrection of Christ Baptism, purification in the washing away of sin, and birth into the life of the Holy Trinity. Chrismation, following Baptism, anoints one with the the "Seal and Gift of the Holy Spirit." Through the Holy Spirit we are able to live the fullness of the Christian life. We are regenerated and given the Grace by which we are able to keep the commandments of Christ and attain unto the Kingdom of Heaven. 

In Holy Communion "The Eucharist", is received the very Body and Blood of Christ for remission of sins, the sanctification of soul and body, and for life eternal. 

In Holy Confession the Christian, when truly repentant, receives from Christ, through teh confessor, the forgiveness of sins committed after baptism. 

OrdinationMarriage, and Holy Unctioncomplete the seven New Testament Sacraments. By the laying on of hands a bishop transmits Divine Grace to the person being ordained, linking him to the uninterrupted succession of Orthodox clergy from the time of Christ to the present. Divine Grace sanctifies the union of man and woman in matrimony. Orthodoxy parish priests are usually married but the marriage must precede ordination. The Sacrament of Holy Unction brings healing to the infirmities of both body and soul, as God sees fit, through the anointing.