“The sacraments are outward and visible signs of inward and spiritual grace, given by Christ as sure and certain means by which we receive that grace. Grace is God’s favor toward us, unearned and undeserved; by grace God forgives our sins, enlightens our minds, stirs our hearts, and strengthens our wills.”
Book of Common Prayer (BCP), 857-858

Life Events & Sacraments

 

Our common life in Christ is marked by key life events. One way the church marks these events and reminds us that God is always present is through the sacraments and sacramental rites.

Below, you will find descriptions and information about those sacraments and sacramental rites.

If you have questions about any of these or wish to have more information, please contact our Rector.

 

The Sacraments

Holy Baptism

Baptism is initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ. We typically offer baptisms four times a year during our 8:00 and 10:00 AM Sunday services. The typical dates of Baptism are the Sunday after All Saints' Day (first Sunday in November), Baptism of Christ (usually the second Sunday in January); during the Easter Vigil (Saturday evening, before Easter); and Pentecost (usually in June).

We baptize adults who have been prepared through our baptism class. We baptize infants whose parents are baptized Christians and have taken the baptism class. When infants or young children are baptized, their parents and godparents make promises on their behalf, being raised at home and church, and in the knowledge and love of our Lord Jesus Christ. Those who are baptized must have at least one sponsor (commonly called godparents for children, who, if possible, should attend the preparation class). We ask that anyone seeking baptism attends at least two services before the baptism, to familiarize themselves with the Episcopal service.

To sign up for our baptism class, contact the church office.

For questions about what baptism means, how to prepare, and other questions, please contact the Rector.
 

Holy Communion (Holy Eucharist or The Lord’s Supper)

In the Episcopal Church, the Holy Eucharist is also known as Holy Communion or the Lord's Supper. Eucharist comes from the Greek words meaning "good" and "gift." It literally means "Thanksgiving." Holy Communion is the way Jesus himself has given us to remember and enter again into the events of Jesus' atoning death and glorious resurrection—the greatest expression of God's gracious love for us. In this meal, we are reminded that we are one Body, united to God and one another. As we eat and drink as one family, we dwell in Jesus, and he in us, preparing us for the work the Holy Spirit would have us do.

All baptized Christians, regardless of denomination, are welcome to participate in communion, which happens at both our 8:00 AM and 10:00 AM services. We have gluten-free Communion, simply let the priest know you need it.

For more information about Holy Communion, and for Communion Frequently Asked Questions, click here.

For questions about Communion, please contact the Rector.
 

Life Events

First Holy Communion

We believe that any baptized person, regardless of age, may receive Communion. We expect that parents and godparents will decide for their child(ren) when and how the children will receive Communion. We recognize that some teaching about the meaning and practice of Communion is appreciated. Several times a year, we offer a one-time class on receiving Communion.

Check out calendar for upcoming dates for the class. For questions about First Holy Communion, contact our Rector.
 

Confirmation

Confirmation is a sacramental rite by which persons baptized as infants take on the promises of the Baptismal Covenant for themselves in the community of faith, symbolized by the laying on of hands by the Bishop. Typically, Confirmation is offered once every three years in our 10:00 AM Sunday service during the Bishop's visitation. Other opportunities for Confirmation outside of Holy Trinity often arise.

Confirmation is offered for students in 6th grade and up. In addition, on Confirmation Sundays, those children or adults confirmed in other traditions may be received into the Episcopal Church. A confirmation class is required for all adult wishing to be received and is offered several times a year.

For youth, there is an extended time of preparation. Classes typically start in September and vary in length, depending on class size.

Check our calendar for more information. If you have any questions of if you or your child would like to be confirmed or received, please contact our Rector.

 

Marriage (Holy Matrimony)

Christian marriage is a solemn and public covenant between two persons in the presence of God.

To be married at Holy Trinity, at least one member of the couple must be a baptized Christian and at least one family member must be a member of the church; the ceremony must be attested too by at least two witnesses; and the marriage must conform to the laws of the State and the canons of this Church. All couples are required to take our Marriage Preparation Class. This course involves three or four meetings with our Rector. If one or both people are previously divorced, permission from the Bishop of New Jersey is required.

For information about fees, wedding policies, and any other matters about weddings at Holy Trinity, please see our Wedding Guidebook: Weddings at Holy Trinity.

For questions about weddings, please contact our Rector.
 

Burial of the Dead (Funerals)

Funerals in the Episcopal Church are filled with Scriptures that point to the great hope we have in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Our burial liturgy provides powerful and hopeful words that provide great comfort in a time of grief. Our altar guild, music staff, and clergy are committed to helping families through the difficult time following a loved one's death.

The death of a member of the Church should be reported as soon as possible to, and arrangements for the funeral should be made in consultation with, the Rector of the congregation. If desired, the service should be held at a time when the congregation can be present.

For information on funerals, or funeral planning, please call the church office or contact the Rector.

(Please note: if a family member or friend is near death, please notify the Rector as soon as possible, so he can visit with the family and the person approaching death.)
 

Other Sacramental Rites

Rite of Reconciliation of the Penitent (Confession)

The ministry of reconciliation, which has been committed by Christ to his Church, is exercised through the care each Christian has for others, through the common prayer of Christians assembled for public worship, and through the priesthood of Christ and his ministers declaring absolution.

The Reconciliation of a Penitent is available for all who desire it. It is not restricted to times of sickness. Confessions may be heard anytime and anywhere.

Confession or the Rite of Reconciliation is encouraged during Lent but is not required.

If you wish to receive the rite, please contact the Rector to schedule a time.
 

Ministration to the Sick (Unction or Prayer for the Sick)

Ministration to Sick are prayers and (if desired) anointing with blessed oil for those experiencing illness, struggle, or hardship. It is a way to recognize God’s abiding presence, even in times of difficulty, and to ask God for continued strength and perseverance is all our struggles.

If you, or a loved one, becomes ill or wishes to receive prayer or anointing, please contact the Rector, so he can schedule a visit.
 

Ministration at the Time of Death (Extreme Unction or Last Rites)

Ministration at the Time of Death are prayers to prepare those who are near death or about to die. It begins the Burial liturgy with a “giving back” of our loved one into God’s care. It involves reading scripture, prayers, and Holy Communion. There is no limit to the number of times Last Rites can be observed and the ministers of Holy Trinity would be glad to offer the rite whenever necessary or requested.

If you, or a loved one, is close to dying (or concerned about dying), please contact the Rector.