This GCSE RE Christianity quiz takes a look at rites of passage. 'Rites of Passage' is the anthropological title for the set of ceremonies accepted and repeated within a society (or faith community) to mark major milestones in individual lives such as birth, reaching adulthood, marriage, the arrival of children, and, in due course, death. Christianity has a wide range of practice and belief about these important moments, and this quiz aims to help you familiarise yourself with at least the main outlines of Christian thought and behaviour.
A birth ~ the gift, and start, of a new life with all its potential (which we can only guess, but Christians believe God knows) ~ is clearly worth celebrating with the family, friends and wider worshipping community. It would be surprising if there were no rituals associated with that.
Many faiths mark the individual’s transition from childhood into taking on adult responsibilities and understanding as a full member. Most of the major Christian denominations do this at a First Communion or by Confirmation (often ~ but by no means always ~ in the early teens, during adolescence). Then may come marriage (and perhaps the next generation of children), and/or ordination to the priesthood, in such branches of the church as have priests (not all of which will yet admit women to this role); and eventually, it will probably be a priest who leads the person’s funeral.
Each of these ‘changes of state’ is, of course, important to the person and those around them, and there are time-honoured customs to mark the moments. Adult baptism by total immersion is a very special occasion, and it would be hard to find two more poignant tiny words than the ‘I do’ assent to wedding vows.
This is the personal-yet-public world on which we are focusing in our GCSE RE quiz this time; let’s get started!