The traditional definition of a sacrament is this: “A sacrament is a visible sign, instituted by Christ, to give grace.”
A Visible Sign
An action is performed by a minister (usually a priest) using some kind of matter (like bread, oil or water) following a specific ritual. For example, when a baby is baptized in the church the priest pours water over its head and at the same time says the words “I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
Instituted by Christ
The Lord Jesus Christ instructed His church to offer the seven sacraments to His followers. Following this instruction, the Christians of the Early Church celebrated the Sacraments and we do today too.
To Give Grace
Grace is God’s free gift of Himself. In the Sacraments we know, without question, that God is present, that he influences us to follow in his ways and that he strengthens us for the journey ahead.