4.3 The Sacraments

SECTION 3. The Sacraments

ARTICLE 181. The sacraments of the Church instituted by Christ are two: Holy Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.

ARTICLE 182. Children are received into the Church by baptism and are subject to its care and discipline. As soon as they are old enough to learn the Catechism and to be benefitted by the pastor’s instruction, they shall become members of the catechetical class.

ARTICLE 183. A child shall be baptized if one of its parents is a member of the Church.

ARTICLE 184. The previous article shall not be so construed as to prevent persons who adopt orphans or other children into their families from bringing them to God for baptism and giving them the sign and seal of the covenant of grace.

ARTICLE 185. Adults shall be baptized if a minister has ascertained that they possess correct views of Christian doctrine, give evidence of true repentance and faith, and are willing to yield obedience to the requirements of Christ. But if in these respects the minister discovers deficiencies, he shall direct them to attend the usual catechetical instruction, and shall afterward proceed in relation to them as with other catechumens. If this, however, is impractical, he shall instruct them in some other suitable way.

ARTICLE 186. Baptism shall be administered publicly in the church, if possible. The forms provided in the liturgy of the Reformed Church in the United States shall be used.

ARTICLE 187. The sacrament of the Lord’s Supper shall be observed publicly in every congregation at least twice a year, and the celebration conducted according to the established order of the Reformed Church in the United States.

ARTICLE 188. Every sermon based upon Scripture must necessarily conform to the spiritual meaning of the Lord’s Supper; and unless the Spiritual Council has taken official disciplinary measures against a communicant member, he shall not be denied the privileges of attending the Lord’s Table. In the congregational records the dates on which the holy communion has been administered and the names of the members who have communed shall be noted.

ARTICLE 189. Members, in good standing, of other congregations of the Reformed Church, and of other denominations holding the essential doctrines of the Gospel, should be invited to participate in the observance of this sacrament.

ARTICLE 190. The Lord’s Supper shall be administered to the sick and infirm communicants who are not able to come to the house of God and who express a desire to receive the sacrament.

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