Holy Baptism holds the first place among the sacraments, because it is the door of the spiritual life; for by it we are made members of Christ and incorporated with the Church. And since through the first man death entered into all, unless we be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, we can not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, as Truth Himself has told us.
Because this is the very most important sacrament in the life of the Church there is a very well developed theology and Catechism to support it.
One of the very first things to know about Baptism is who the eligible "BAPTIZERS" are. The answer to this is one of the first things that Catholics learn when they are admitted to "CCD" or "Faith Formation Programs". The ordinary BAPTIZER, we call him the ordinary minister of baptism is the priest. Most Catholics bring a child to the church, present the infant to the priest who presides and performs the sacrament. But there are extraordinary ministers of Baptism too. Who are they?

Besides the conferring of baptism by a minister, there are other forms of "baptism". These different types of baptism have existed for a long time in the church. Can you name them?

If you care to peek around the corner to get the answers, click here.


"What is a Sacrament? How many are there?"

By Paul Dion, STL

Dominus Vobiscum!

Being Catholic is a special calling. It is not easy to be Catholic. There are so many balls that we have to keep in the air at the same time. We have Saints, Martyrs, The Virgin Mary, Mass on every Sunday, Holy Communion, Holy Water, the Rosary, Priests whom we call "Father", House Blessings, a different "Ten Commandments", a different Bible, a Pope and Sacraments. You all know that the list does not stop there, but realizes that you do not have all day.
The BURNING QUESTION is going to look a little bit different to you from today forward. It will remain a test of what you know about what it means to be Catholic, but we will give you the opportunity to peek around the corner and get the answer to the question. You won't have to tell anyone that you did not know it. It will be a loving secret between you and God.

If you want to disagree with us, you are welcome to do so. The "comment" button will remain accessible to you. Another feature that will be important to you will be the continuity of the general area of knowledge of the questions. for instance, this week we are starting a series of questions about the Sacraments of the Catholic Church. You will therefore be able to anticipate what the next question will be from week to week.

Finally, we want to encourage you to jump on your computer and ask us to clarify doubts that you may have about the sacraments. There are a lot of questions that are hanging around out there. If you are harboring one of those, let us know and we will address your concerns respectfully and professionally.

Our first in this new series of BURNING QUESTIONS under this new policy is teh following:


CLICK HERE to take a peek at the answer to this Burning Question
Or post a comment below.


"What did Pope Pius XII define about the mystery of the Assumption in 1950?"

By Paul Dion, STL

On Wednesday, August 15, Catholics around the world are going to be celebrating the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This day marks a moment in Catholic life that is very special.

For centuries Catholics believed in the Assumption and celebrated its solemnly every year. It was a Holy Day of Obligation and the churches were filled with faithful. This celebration took place even though the Assumption was not a defined doctrine of the Church.

Finally, after centuries of unanimous loving celebration and of deep faith in this mystery, Pope Pius XII pronounced the mystery of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary as a doctrine of faith for all Catholics.

The Burning Question of the week is this: "Just what is it that Pope Pius XII defined about the mystery of the Assumption on that famous day in 1950?"

If you feel up to it, reach into your memory and tell us how many times a Pope has exercised the ex cathedra grace of his infallibility in the history of the Church?

The answer to this question is presented to you in all its wonderful glory in our KNOWING OUR FAITH SECTION under the "The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary by Jim Van Vurst, O. F. M." Click the title to read the article and the story. TThe second part of the