4.4 Rites

SECTION 4. Rites

ARTICLE 191. Confirmation, ordination and marriage are sacred church rites, which shall be administered according to the order prescribed in the liturgy of the Church.

ARTICLE 192. Every pastor shall carefully prepare the youth in his pastoral charge for communicant membership in the Church by diligently instructing them in the doctrines and duties of the Christian religion. The period of instruction shall, if possible, be so extended that the pupils memorize and are able to recite the entire Heidelberg Catechism before confirmation. The course of instruction shall include catechetical explanation and memorization, Bible history, Bible readings and memorizations, and the study of the books and contents of the Bible, the Belgic Confession of Faith, the Canons of Dort, church history, also the singing and memorization of Psalms, hymns, and Scripture songs.

ARTICLE 193. Before admitting applicants for confirmation into full communion with the Church, the Spiritual Council shall be satisfied that the candidates understand the fundamental truths of the Christian religion and are governed by them in their walk and conversation.

ARTICLE 194. In the act of ordination, whether of a minister, an elder, or a deacon, only ordained ministers and elders of the church shall participate in the laying on of hands. A person once ordained whether as a minister of the Gospel, an elder, or a deacon, is set apart to that particular office for life, unless for sufficient reason the ordination has been revoked.

ARTICLE 195. Marriage is an ordinance of God and should be solemnized in accordance with the laws of the Church as well as the State.

ARTICLE 196. Members of the Church, having died in the faith and hope of the Gospel, shall receive a Christian burial; the burial service may be conducted according to the order prescribed by the Church.

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