What are sacraments?
What do the sacraments mean?" It's a simple question that can't be answered simply. That's partly because of the number of sacraments. There are seven religious rituals or church ceremonies that Catholics call sacraments. Then there are other lesser rituals and practices (like blessing ourselves with holy water or praying the rosary) called sacramentals. Is there a single meaning that can embrace all the sacraments? Sacraments are rituals that are highly symbolic. That's another reason why it's not easy to specify exactly what each or all of the sacraments mean. Unlike traffic signs or signs in a store, symbols can mean more than one thing at the same time: They can mean different things to different people (think of a cross, a six-pointed star or a crescent), and they can have different levels of meaning. For example, think of the many levels of meaning-personal, family, civil, religious-connected with a wedding. Ceremonies that are rich in symbolism can mean many things at once.