Holy Baptism is one of the two major sacraments by which God adopts us as the children of God and makes us members of the Body of Christ, the Church, and inheritors of the Kingdom of God. It is an occasion, also, for the entire congregation to renew its own baptismal covenant and to promise to share with the parents and sponsors in the Christian nurture of the person being baptized.
A sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace. The outward and visible sign in Baptism is water, in which the person is baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. The inward and spiritual grace in Baptism is the union with Christ in his death and resurrection, birth into the family of God the Church, forgiveness of sins, and new life in the Holy Spirit.
Because Baptism represents the most decisive moment in any person's life, we rejoice and give God thanks for the decision to make this step forward in faith; a first step in our life-long spiritual journey.
When Baptism is Held - Because Baptism is an act of initiation into membership in the Body of Christ, Baptism is always administered within the Eucharist at the main service for those feast days when the church celebrates those gifts and graces which become ours in Baptism or when the church is celebrating in thanksgiving its life as a community of faith:
The Great Easter Vigil, when we celebrate Christ's death and resurrection, in which we share through our Baptism.
The Day of Pentecost, when we celebrate the pouring out of the Holy Spirit in which we are endowed in Baptism.
The Sunday after All Saints' Day, when we celebrate the one communion of saints in which we are members through Baptism.
The Feast of The Baptism of Our Lord, when we celebrate Jesus' confession at his baptism in the Jordan to be the Christ in whom we have our Christian ministries.
The Episcopal Visitation of The Bishop of New Jersey, who is the chief overseer of our Christian ministries and by loyalty to whom we are united as one Church..
There will be other times designated by the Rector during the year when, as a community of faith, we shall observe the joys of Christ's Church and celebrate the reality of our faith and baptism.
Baptisms are administered at other times only in rare situations of extenuating circumstances, such as an emergency (someone near death).
Being Baptized - All desiring to be baptized must notify the Rector so that there is ample time for baptismal instructions to be held with the person being baptized or the parents of the child being baptized.
Summer Baptisms - Once again there will be baptisms offered at the 10:15 am Eucharist on a Sunday in summer. If you have a candidate to be baptized, please call the Rector.