Over the weekend, our third little angel was baptized into our Catholic faith. Even if we’d already done this twice before with our first and second-born, the beauty and importance of this Sacrament never fails to overwhelm me–how it stems from a desire, a wish of the parents for their child to grow up in this environment of faith, rather than a dictatorial decision that strips the child of his freedom, as some who speak against infant baptism contend.
Fr. Francis Alvarez, during our 2nd child’s baptism, pointed out that the original text used the word “into” instead of “in” in the statement “I baptize you into the Father, Son, Holy Spirit.” It is more than just baptizing in the name of the Trinity; it is an immersing of the person into the world of Christianity, into the life of Christ. That is why we parents (and godparents) renew our baptismal vows, to remind ourselves of what we believe in, as we take on the responsibility of showing the candidate lives that live out these truths.
My dear child, I baptize you…
into this Catholic family that holds Christ at its center, loving each other, praying together.
into this community of believers that seek to follow Christ by living out His Word and carrying on the traditions handed to us by His apostles.
into this majestic Communion of Saints that gives us exemplars of faith and holiness, who not only teach us with their lives, but pray for us constantly that we may share in the eternal joy.
into a Sacramental life that opens for us doors of grace, sustaining us, body and spirit, for this faith journey.
I baptize you into the Father, Son, and Spirit, for we, your parents and godparents, have been blessed by the life of the Church; and it is our prayer that you be similarly blessed with faith, hope, love, and peace.