Hmmm…where were we? Oh yes, baptism.
Easily forgotten…Do you remember your Baptism? You’re probably wondering, “Come on Deacon Phil are you out of your mind”? Yes, maybe. Look, I know most of us were baptized as babies. It’s a trick question. Parents really should revisit a child’s Baptism with them as soon as the child is old enough to understand. Actually, it’s the parents’ and godparents’ responsibility to do this. In the ROBFC, the celebrant (priest or deacon) states, “Dear parents and godparents: You have come here to present this Child for Baptism. By water and the Holy Spirit he (she) is to receive the gift of new life from God, who is love. On your part, you must make it your constant care to bring him (her) up in the faith. See that the divine life which God gives him (her) is kept safe from the poison of sin, to grow always stronger in his (her) heart.” Sigh, we do take our sacredness for granted. I really wish you could see what I see when I’m performing a baptism, people rolling their eyes, looking around at the church, checking their texts. Unbelievably this sometimes includes the parents and the godparents. It’s as if they want to be somewhere else. Going through the motions does not translate into understanding what you are actually participating in. Your child should be asking questions like, “why did I have to wear a white garment, why is my godfather holding a candle, why did the celebrant have to pour the water three times?” Hmm, got you wondering huh? That’s the idea. You know, I have a Protestant friend that reads the Beacon every week. When she read the first part of this series she was amazed how it pertained to her own faith and even her church had gotten away from the basic fundamentals of Baptism. For the Catholic it is the first sacrament into the circle of Spiritual life, and the circle closes with all the symbols of Baptism present once again. For any Christian it is the beginning of a new faith journey. Ok, so when you get home today or sometime this week, break open the picture albums, pull out the “white garment” and/or candle if you still have them and take a stroll down memory lane. Next week: Breaking down the Rite!
Until next time…may Jesus keep you smiling, may God’s grace shine on you and always pray for our newly baptized! Love ya!