Sacramentals

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The sacraments of the Church are seven signs of love that have infallible effects because Jesus works the work when it is worked ("ex opere operato"). The sacraments are "signs that cause what they signify" and "outward signs of inward realities."

Sacramentals are things or gestures used in prayer. They are multitudinous and do not have infallible effects. They are apparent to our senses in some way and help us to remember the reality of God's essence, presence, and power. The effect of sacramentals varies with the faith of the person who uses them.

- the sign of the cross
- holy water
- blessed salt
- a cross or crucifix
- medallions
- scapulars
- rosaries, chaplets
- clothing: religious habits, wedding dresses, christening gowns, veils
- liturgical vestments: alb, stole, chasuble, cincture, pallium, etc.
- candles
- incense
- bells, big and small
- processions
- churches and aspects of churches: towers, tabernacles, vaults, baptismal fonts, windows, chapels
- sacred vessels
- rings: wedding rings, bishop's rings
- a pope or bishop's crozier and mitre
- Easter fire, bonfires
- flowers, especially roses
- Christmas tree, holly, mistletoe, wreaths
- meals
- drinks, toasts
- holy books, especially the Bible
- mementoes
- manuscripts, signatures, photographs
- works of art
- music, hymns, poetry
- statues of the angels and the saints
- icons, portraits, pictures
- relics of the saints or of holy things
- novenas
- prayers, prayer meetings
- alms
- pilgrimage
- fasting and sacrifices
- gestures
- social rituals (etiquette)
- kisses, hugs, touch, body language, the marital embrace
- graves and cemeteries
- places and times filled with natural beauty