October 23, 2017



The whole liturgical life of the Church revolves around the Eucharistic sacrifice and the sacraments. There are seven sacraments in the Church: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Reconciliation (Penance), Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and Matrimony.

Sacraments are “powers that comes forth” from the Body of Christ, which is ever-living and life-giving. They are actions of the Holy Spirit at work in his Body, the Church. They are “the masterworks of God” in the new and everlasting covenant.


Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the word.

Parents wishing to have their child baptized should contact the Parish Office at (865) 482-2875. Any of our priests or deacons would be happy to meet with you to help you prepare for Christ’s Sacrament of Baptism.

Baptism Policies


Jesus invites everyone into His Church. Once we accept His invitation, He welcomes us with the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Communion. Baptism initiates us into the death and resurrection of Christ; Confirmation initiates us into a relationship with the Holy Spirit; and Holy Communion initiates us into communion with the Father, who receives the same body and soul of His Son that we receive in this sacrament.

In order to highlight Confirmation’s connection to Baptism and Holy Communion, Bishop Stika has now established a common age for Confirmation in our diocese, so that, effective spring of 2019, all parishes will celebrate Confirmation for either 5th or 6th graders. At Saint Mary’s, we will celebrate Confirmation in the 5th grade.

Our parish will proceed with implementation of this new policy according to the following schedule:

  • In the spring of 2018, the bishop will Confirm our 7th and 8th grade children.
  • In the spring of 2019, the bishop will Confirm our 5th, 6th and 7th grade children.
  • Thereafter, the bishop will Confirm 5th graders each spring.

Parents of Confirmation-aged children not enrolled at Saint Mary School or at Knoxville Catholic High School should enroll their children in the parish Confirmation program at the proper time. 

Adults who desire to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation should contact one of the pastors.


Father Brent Shelton, St. Mary's Pastor - Phone: (865) 482-2875 Ext. 1 pastor@stmarysoakridge.org
Father Pontian Kiyimba, A.J. - Associate Pastor Phone: (865) 482-2875 Ext. 2 parochialvicar@stmarysoakridge.org
Deacon Gary Sega, Pastoral Associate - Phone: (865) 482-2875 deacon1@stmarysoakridge.org
Deacon John DeClue, Pastoral Associate - Phone: (865) 482-2875 Ext. 9 deacon2@stmarysoakridge.org
Cyndi Panter, Director of Religious Education - Phone: (865) 482-2875 Ext. 3 dre@stmarysoakridge.org

Reconciliation (Penance)

Those who participate in the Sacrament of Penance obtain pardon from God’s mercy for the offense committed against Him, and are, at the same time, reconciled with the Church, which they have wounded by their sins and which by charity, by example, and by prayer labors for their conversion. 

Opportunities to Celebrate God’s Divine Mercy:

Wednesday after the 6 pm Mass.
Saturday after the 8 am Mass and at 5 pm.
Sunday at 7:30 am, 9:30 am, 11:30 am and 1:30 pm.

First Reconciliation is usually celebrated in the 2nd grade, after preparation through the parish Religious Education program. Please contact the Director of Religious Education for additional information.

Holy Eucharist

The Holy Eucharist completes Christian initiation. Those who have been raised to the dignity of the royal priesthood by Baptism and configured more deeply to Christ by Confirmation participate with the whole community in the Lord’s own sacrifice by means of the Eucharist.

Communion is available to Catholics in the state of grace at every Mass. Those who are sick and unable to attend Mass may receive Communion from extraordinary ministers.

First Eucharist:  This sacrament is usually celebrated in the second grade. Please contact the Director of Religious Education for more information.


The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! Please contact one of our priests to help set a date and to prepare you for the Sacrament of Marriage.

Marriage Preparation (in English and Spanish) are provided by Deacon John and Vilma DeClue.

Wedding Policies

Anointing of the Sick

By the sacred anointing of the sick and the prayer of the priests the whole Church commends those who are ill to the suffering and glorified Lord, that he may raise them up and save them and indeed she exhorts them to contribute to the good of the People of God by freely uniting themselves to the Passion and death of Christ.

If you become seriously ill or homebound, please have a friend or caregiver call Father Shelton or Father Collins as soon as possible. Our priests will promptly offer you Christ’s healing in the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick.