Catechism of the Catholic Church

418 Part Two IN BRIEF 1677 Sacramentals are sacred signs instituted by the Church. They prepare men to receive the fruit of the sacraments and sanctify different circumstances of life. 1678 Among the sacramentals blessings occupy an impor­ tant place. They include both praise of God for his works and gifts, and the Church’s intercession for men that they may be able to use God’s gifts according to the spirit of the Gospel. 1679 In addition to the liturgy, Christian life is nourished by various forms of popular piety, rooted in the differ- ent cultures. While carefully clarifying them in the light of faith, the Church fosters the forms of popular piety that express an evangelical instinct and a human wisdom and that enrich Christian life. A rticle 2 CHRISTIAN FUNERALS 1680 All the sacraments, and principally those of Christian in­ itiation, have as their goal the last Passover of the child of God which, through death, leads him into the life of the Kingdom. Then what he confessed in faith and hope will be fulfilled: “I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.” 184 I. T he C hristian ’ s L ast P assover 1681 The Christian meaning of death is revealed in the light of the Paschal mystery of the death and resurrection of Christ in whom resides our only hope. The Christian who dies in Christ Jesus is “away from the body and at home with the Lord.” 185 1682 For the Christian the day of death inaugurates, at the end of his sacramental life, the fulfillment of his new birth begun at Baptism, the definitive “conformity” to “the image of the Son” conferred by 184 Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed. 185 2 Cor 5:8. 1525 1010-1014