Catechism of the Catholic Church

The Celebration of the Christian Mystery 415 joined together; the refusal of fertility turns married life away from its “supreme gift,” the child ( GS 50 §1). 1665 The remarriage of persons divorced from a living, lawful spouse contravenes the plan and law of God as taught by Christ. They are not separated from the Church, but they cannot receive Eucharistic commun­ ion. They will lead Christian lives especially by edu- cating their children in the faith. 1666 The Christian home is the place where children receive the first proclamation of the faith. For this reason the family home is rightly called “the domestic church,” a community of grace and prayer, a school of human virtues and of Christian charity. C hapter F our O ther L iturgical C elebrations A rticle 1 SACRAMENTALS 1667 “Holy Mother Church has, moreover, instituted sacramen- tals. These are sacred signs which bear a resemblance to the sacra- ments. They signify effects, particularly of a spiritual nature, which are obtained through the intercession of the Church. By them men are disposed to receive the chief effect of the sacraments, and various occasions in life are rendered holy.” 173 The characteristics of sacramentals 1668 Sacramentals are instituted for the sanctification of certain ministries of the Church, certain states of life, a great variety of circumstances in Christian life, and the use of many things helpful to man. In accordance with bishops’ pastoral decisions, they can also respond to the needs, culture, and special history of the Chris- tian people of a particular region or time. They always include a prayer, often accompanied by a specific sign, such as the laying on of hands, the sign of the cross, or the sprinkling of holy water (which recalls Baptism). 173 SC 60; cf. CIC, can. 1166; CCEO, can. 867. 699, 2157