Page 15 - Water of Life Infant Baptism
P. 15

  The Community
We have been speaking of many beautiful symbols. We have left the greatest for last: the community gathered.
We are embodied social beings, and this is how God normally reaches out to us: through people, through the community of Jesus’ disciples, committed to living the life of baptism. This is the Church, ‘the body of Christ.’
On the day of your child’s baptism, those gathered for the celebration—whether they be a church full of parishioners or an intimate gathering of family and friends—are a vital sign. Together with the parents, godparents and celebrant, they signify that the faith in which your child is baptised is not a private possession of an individual family, but it is the common treasure of the whole Church of Christ.
It is a common and happy custom for families to host a baptism celebration at home following the ceremony at the church. Take care to avoid dualistic thinking: the spiritual things done at church and the secular things done at home. Rather, view your home as the dwelling place of Christ’s faithful, infusing your domestic celebration with a sense of joyfilled spirituality. (See: “Faith tips for Hosting a Baptism Party” p.26)
Remember: “Church” is a word that describes a people, not just a building!
Spirituality in the home
Tell stories of belonging
Around the meal table, or perhaps during a car journey, tell stories about how faith has been passed on through your family tree.
As a talking point at home, display photos of your child’s ancestors; e.g. grandparents and great aunts/ uncles.
As well as blood family, include pictures of people from the wider faith family, past and present.
Include an image of a saint, perhaps one after whom your child is named.
Remember and talk about these special people.
Connect with the godparents
A suggestion: Invite the godparents to a meal and talk about your hopes and dreams for your child. Explain to them why you chose them for this special role. Pray for the godparents, and ask them to pray for you.
Visit the church
If you have other young children, take them to the baptismal font in your parish church to show them where their little brother or sister is to be baptised. Help them to anticipate this sacred event with joy and enthusiasm.

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