The Catholic Church

Regardless of your current relationship to the Catholic Church, we welcome everyone to learn more about our faith based on Jesus Christ, the eternal and living Word of God.

If you are from another faith tradition, were raised a Catholic but no longer attend a church, or are currently attending weekly Mass yet you wish to deepen your faith, you can learn more about the Church.

The Catholic Church is a community of believers who span the globe – “catholic,” means universal. The Church’s core beliefs are summed up in The Nicene Creed.


catholics come home


Here on our website is a complete list of parishes throughout the Diocese of Knoxville, one of which is sure to be near you. Rest assured that you are welcome at any of our parishes, where you’ll find a loving community of people who would be happy to help you find the answer your questions.

The seven sacraments are the outward and visible signs, instituted by Christ, to confer God’s inward and invisible grace:

BAPTISM (from the Greek word baptisma, a “dipping”) is the sacrament in which, by water and the power of the Holy Spirit, a person is cleansed of all sin, including original sin, and experiences birth into the new life of Christ.
CONFIRMATION is the sacrament in which the baptized are strengthened by the Holy Spirit in order to bear witness to Christ and prepare to take on the role of a disciple.
EUCHARIST (from the Greek word eucharistia,“thanksgiving”) is the sacrament in which the true Body and Blood of Christ, who is truly and substantially present under the appearance of bread and wine, is received in holy Communion.
RECONCILIATION (or penance, confession) is the sacrament in which sins committed after baptism are confessed after an examination of conscience and forgiven by a priest in the name of Christ.
ANOINTING OF THE SICK is the sacrament in which those who are ill are anointed to impart spiritual strength and physical healing.
MARRIAGE signifies the union and love that exist between Christ and the Church. It is a faithful covenant in which a man and a woman unite in such a way that, by forming “one flesh,” they can transmit human life. As spouses and parents, men and women cooperate in a unique way in the Creator’s work.
HOLY ORDERS is the sacrament in which a bishop confers on a baptized man the grace of the Holy Spirit and sacred power for the service of the faithful. It can be administered in three forms: deacon, priest and bishop.

Adults and children older than seven who have not been baptized typically participate in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). After prayer, study and spiritual direction, they receive the sacraments of initiation at the Easter Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday night. Adults who have been baptized in another Christian tradition may also be welcomed at the Easter Vigil, or at another time. They are confirmed and receive Communion. They are called candidates, and may participate in many of the steps of RCIA. Learn more about RCIA and Christian Formation in the Diocese of Knoxville.