Baptism

The Apostle Paul writes that we are baptized into Christ’s death and resurrection. In baptism, we become part of the Body of Christ and our God-given gifts are sanctified (made holy) for service to the Church and to the world. Baptism in the early church was understood to be a complete death to one’s old life and resurrection into a new life in Christ, and we still believe that.

Episcopalians do not believe that unbaptized persons will be condemned by God. Baptism is not a “heavenly life insurance policy!” Parents do not have to be anxious that their infant be baptized as soon as possible to avoid damnation – baptism is not about inclusion as much as it is about expulsion into the world as one who carries Christ’s love to others.

Preparation for Baptism

If you or your child are preparing for baptism, it is expected that you:

  • Attend Sunday Holy Eucharist weekly for at least several months prior to the baptism.
  • Meet regularly with the priest and others preparing for baptism for bible study, prayer, and reflection.
  • Become involved in other aspects of parish life, including Christian formation and/or making a financial commitment to the parish.

Sponsors and Godparents

Sponsors or godparents must be baptized Christians. In the baptismal rite, sponsors are asked to renounce evil, turn to Christ, proclaim the ancient Christian faith in the words of the Apostle’s Creed, and make baptismal vows along with or on behalf of the person baptized. Baptismal sponsors or godparents are expected to be regular members of a Christian community, worshipping with that community, and committed to regular prayer and spiritual growth.

Scheduling Baptism

Baptism is administered within the context of the primary worship service of the Church, namely, the Holy Eucharist. In the past, baptism was often done privately, outside of the context of worship, but the true meaning of baptism as an entrance into the Body of Christ requires that we truly bring someone into the Church while the Church is assembled.   

Because we baptize in the context of regular Sunday worship, baptisms are best done at certain times of the year. Four times of the year are regularly set aside for baptisms, and these are all days of special connection to the themes of baptism and discipleship:

  • The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord (January)
  • The Easter Vigil (Saturday night before Easter)
  • Pentecost (fifty days after Easter)
  • All Saints (November 1 or the first Sunday after November 1)

Other dates may be possible; please contact the church office to inquire.