Catechism of the Catholic Church

The Profession of Faith 185 698 The seal is a symbol close to that of anointing. “The Father has set his seal” on Christ and also seals us in him. 50 Because this seal indicates the indelible effect of the anointing with the Holy Spirit in the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, andHoly Orders, the image of the seal ( sphragis ) has been used in some theological traditions to express the indelible “character” imprinted by these three unrepeatable sacraments. 699 The hand. Jesus heals the sick and blesses little children by laying hands on them. 51 In his name the apostles will do the same. 52 Even more pointedly, it is by the Apostles’ imposition of hands that the Holy Spirit is given. 53 The Letter to the Hebrews lists the imposition of hands among the “fundamental elements” of its teaching. 54 The Church has kept this sign of the all-powerful outpouring of the Holy Spirit in its sacramental epicleses. 700 The finger. “It is by the finger of God that [Jesus] cast out de- mons.” 55 If God’s law was written on tablets of stone “by the finger of God,” then the “letter from Christ” entrusted to the care of the apostles, is written “with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of human hearts.” 56 The hymn Veni Creator Spiritus invokes the Holy Spirit as the “ finger of the Father’s right hand. ” 57 701 The dove. At the end of the flood, whose symbolism refers to Baptism, a dove released by Noah returns with a fresh olive-tree branch in its beak as a sign that the earth was again habitable. 58 When Christ comes up from the water of his baptism, the Holy Spirit, in the form of a dove, comes down upon him and remains with him. 59 The Spirit comes down and remains in the purified hearts of the baptized. In certain churches, the Eucharist is reserved in a metal receptacle in the form of a dove ( columbarium ) suspended above the altar. Christian iconography traditionally uses a dove to suggest the Spirit. 50 Jn 6:27; cf. 2 Cor 1:22; Eph 1:13; 4:30. 51 Cf. Mk 6:5; 8:23; 10:16. 52 Cf. Mk 16:18; Acts 5:12; 14:3. 53 Cf. Acts 8:17-19; 13:3; 19:6. 54 Cf. Heb 6:2. 55 Lk 11:20. 56 Ex 31:18; 2 Cor 3:3. 57 LH, Easter Season after Ascension, Hymn at Vespers: digitus paternae dexterae. 58 Cf. Gen 8:8-12. 59 Cf. Mt 3:16 and parallels. 1295-1296 1121 292 1288 1300, 1573 1668 2056 1219 535