Baptism is the gift of our Lord Jesus Christ. When he had risen from the dead, he commanded his followers to go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. We obey this command when we baptise people in the church.
What is the sacrament of Baptism? A sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace, given to us by Christ. In Baptism, the outward visible sign is the water in which the person is baptised ‘in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit’. The inward grace which it is a sign of is death to sin and a new birth to righteousness – a new birth – life through the Holy Spirit – that makes us children of God and members of the Body of Christ, the Church. Baptism is therefore about belonging – belonging to God and God’s Church.
What is required of persons to be baptised? Repentance – by which they reject sin – and faith, by which they believe the promises made by God in that sacrament.
Why then are infants and children baptised? The Anglican Church welcomes people of all ages to receive the sacrament of Holy Baptism – infants and children are baptised in response to God’s all-embracing love. The requirements for baptism – the promises – are made by their parents / godparents and these are later assumed for themselves by the child at their confirmation.
What are the promises of baptism?
The sponsors of the child / infant or the candidate (if capable) affirm the following:
I turn to Christ, I repent of my sins, I reject selfish living and all that is false and unjust, I renounce Satan and all evil.
They also declare their intention and desire to strive to live as a disciple of Christ, loving God with their whole heart and their neighbour as themselves, and affirm as theirs the faith of the Church in the form of the Apostle’s Creed.
Baptism is the beginning of life as a child of God and as a member of the Church. All who have been baptised and confirmed are called to study the Bible, take part in the life of the Church, to share in the Holy Communion and to pray faithfully and regularly. We are called to share with others, by word and example, the love of Christ and his gospel of reconciliation and hope. We are called to love our neighbours as ourselves, to honour all people and to pray and work for peace and justice. We live out this Christian calling by sharing in the life of the worshipping community which exists to worship God and provide us with encouragement and spiritual nourishment for the journey of life and faith.
I am interested in Baptism in the Parish of Manuka. What do I need to do?
Anyone interested in baptism should attend a Sunday service in the Parish and speak with the clergy and request a baptism application form. Once the form has been received, one of the clergy team will make contact with you to discuss the process of preparation for Baptism. This involves meetings with the clergy and attendance at worship. Please note that dates for baptism are subject to the availability of the clergy and that except in case of emergency, baptism is not offered during Lent.