The first of the sacraments of initiation, the Sacrament of Baptism allows a person to enter the journey to eternal life, washes away Original Sin, claims us as a child of God, and makes us a member of the Church.
The Church encourages all parents to have their children baptized.
The Sacrament of Baptism is typically celebrated on the second Sunday of each month after the 11:30am Mass in the Church. Parents and God-parents are expected to attend the 11:30am Mass. Parents anticipating the birth of a child are expected to attend a Baptism Preparation Class, which is held on the first Monday of each month in the Holy Family Chapel at 6:00 pm. Prior registration is required by calling the pastoral center at 439-4585. The child's original birth certificate or proof of birth from the hospital must be provided. Please note that Baptisms are not celebrated during the Lenten Season.
Godparents play a very important role in the life of the baptized. They assist the parents in the role of bringing up children in the practice of the Catholic faith. The requirements for Godparents are set out in the Code of Canon Law (can. 873-974):
- At least one godparent is required; if there are two, one must be male and the other female;
- Must be at least sixteen-years-old;
- Must be a practicing Catholic in good standing with the Church who has received the sacraments of Baptism, Holy Eucharist and Confirmation; (If married) must have a marriage recognized by the Catholic Church;
- Must live in a way that one's faith is strong enough to be able to fulfill the responsibilities involved;
- Must not be the father or mother of the one to be baptized.
Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)
This process is for adults who desire to be fully initiated into the Catholic Church through the Sacraments of Initiation. Persons who are unbaptized, baptized in another Christian faith, or baptized Catholic who have not celebrated the Sacraments of Confirmation and/or First Communion, gather each week, along with their sponsors, as they journey in faith towards full reception into the Catholic Church at Easter. Contact the parish office for more information.
The Sacrament of Confirmation is the full outpouring of the same Holy Spirit that the Apostles received at Pentecost. The forehead is anointed with sacred chrism as the Holy Spirit is invoked to confirm the faith first received in baptism.
For children baptized before the age of seven, the Sacrament of Confirmation is typically celebrated in the eleventh grade. Participants in the eleventh grade who are students at Saint Louis Catholic High School or Saint Margaret Religious Education Program are required to attend special classes (beginning in eighth grade) in order to properly prepare for the celebration of the Sacrament of Confirmation. Pre-registration is required. Contact us to register.
FIRST HOLY COMMUNION
Children who have reached the age of seven years and are enrolled in Saint Margaret Catholic School or in Saint Margaret Religious Education Program are invited to special classes preparing them to receive the Holy Eucharist for the first time. (Please Note: Preparation for this sacrament requires two years of religious education). Because the Eucharist is the sacrament that makes our communion in Christ, we stress family participation! Pre-registration is required.
RECEPTION OF HOLY COMMUNION
As Catholics, we fully participate in the celebration of the Eucharist when we receive Holy Communion. We are encouraged to receive Communion devoutly and frequently. Participants should receive absolution from grave sin during a sacramental confession and fast for one hour before receiving the Body and Blood of Christ . A frequent reception of the Sacrament of Penance is encouraged for all.
The Sacrament of Holy Matrimony is one of the sacraments of vocation. The bride and groom are joined by a special sacrament that is an image of the love that Christ has for the Church.
Couples planning to celebrate the sacrament of marriage in Saint Margaret Catholic Church must obtain and read a copy of the Wedding Policy.
OBTAIN BAPTISMAL CERTIFCATES
Obtain recent official Church documents before your first appointment with the priest. A NEW copy of EACH of your Baptismal certificates with notations issued within the last six months from the Church parish where you and your fiancé were baptized. Phone the parish where you were baptized and ask for an official copy of your Baptismal record with notations on the front and back. If you or your future spouse are NOT Roman Catholic, you must obtain a letter from the Church of Baptism, stating the Baptism has taken place. That letter must include full name, birth date, parents’ full name (including the mother’s maiden name) and the date of Baptism.
SCHEDULE A MEETING WITH A PRIEST OR DEACON
Couples are to meet with a priest or deacon at least six months prior to the intended wedding date to allow sufficient time for marriage preparation as directed by Diocesan Policy. Call the parish office to make an appointment with one of our priests. The date of the wedding cannot be set by anyone except the priest or the deacon who will preside at the wedding. The bride or groom must contact the priest to make the first appointment. Please note that weddings are not celebrated during the Season of Lent.
SCHEDULE A MEETING WITH A WEDDING COORDINATOR
Make an appointment with the Wedding Coordinator before purchasing any items or inviting persons to participate in the wedding. Our Wedding coordinator will review with you the Church policy for marriages, and provide information about photographers, florists, attendants, liturgical music, etc. It is important to know and understand these policies and to set the marriage date with the priest before making arrangements for these or any other services connected with your marriage.
FEES FOR NON-PARISHIONERS
There is a non-parishioner fee for use of the church. For more information contact the church office below.
The Sacrament of Holy Orders is one of the sacraments of vocation. By way of a special calling, men are configured to Christ in a most special way. There are three degrees to the sacrament of Holy Orders: episcopate, presbyterate, and diaconate. It is the task of every Catholic to pray for vocations to the priesthood and religious life!
Prayer for Vocations to the Priesthood
Almighty and eternal God, in your unfailing love you provide ministers for your Church.
We pray for those whom you call to serve the Church as priests.
Inspire in them a generous response.
Grant them courage and vision to serve your people.
May their lives and service call your people to respond to the presence of your Spirit among us,
that, faithful to the Gospel and hope of Jesus the Christ, we may:
announce glad tidings to the poor, proclaim liberty to captives, set prisoners free
and renew the face of the earth.
For further information on vocations, please contact Rev. Msgr. Daniel Torres, Very Rev. Marcus Johnson, Rev. Nathan Long, Rev. Susil Fernando, Rev. Jeffrey Starkovich, any pastor, or associate pastor. These priests would be pleased to give you additional information about the priesthood.
Office of Vocations
Diocese of Lake Charles
P. O. Box 3223
Lake Charles, LA 70602-3223
Rev. Msgr. Daniel Torres , V.G.
Director of Vocations and Seminarians
337-439-7400, Ext. 220
Rev. Jeffrey Starkovich, Vocation Recruiter
Very Rev. Marcus Johnson, Vocation Recruiter (St. Louis Catholic High School)
Rev. Susil Fernando, Vocation Recruiter
Rev. Nathan Long, Vocation Recruiter
Director, Vianney House
337-439-7400, Ext. 308
Anointing of the Sick
The Anointing of the Sick is one of the sacraments of healing. This sacrament is appropriate for those whose health is seriously impaired or in danger of death. It can be received by any baptized Catholic having reached the use of reason. The sacrament forgives sins and confers the grace necessary to maintain hope through suffering.
Please contact the parish office if someone you know is in need of this sacrament. If a loved one is in danger of death, please call the church office immediately at 337-439-4585.