Sunday, December 22, 2013

"I Rejoiced the Day You Were Baptized"

This morning was the long awaited day of baptism for James, Amelia, and Madeline.  I had asked the pastor about baptizing the babies back in September, but he asked to wait until the season of Advent. 

It took a little bit of work to find three baptismal outfits, but the babies were beautifully dressed.  James wore the same outfit Jackson wore when he was baptized.  Amelia wore the family gown that each of my siblings and I wore, as well as my niece and nephew.  Maddie ended up borrowing a friend's dress that both she and her daughter wore.  I love that each outfit was passed down and shared among family and friends. 

Jesse and I had a busy Saturday evening and Sunday morning preparing for the baptism.  We were expecting about 20 family members for lunch at our house after the service.  My mother-in-law graciously provided most of the food, so we only needed to clean, set up tables, and finish last minute preparations. 

The babies were tired, but content.

Our family took up three full pews.  Even though the babies won't have any recollection of their baptism, it's so special to me that they were surrounded by so many loved ones that promise to nurture and guide them.

The actual baptism took place during the children's message.  I appreciated this because it allowed Jackson and his cousins and peers to participate and closely witness the sacrament. James babbled throughout most of the prayers, then cried as the water was sprinkled over his head.  Amelia fussed a bit while the pastor carried her down the aisle.  Maddie was rather indifferent throughout.  All three were fairly content, especially considering none of them had napped prior to the service.

This was the best of the blurry pictures :(
The pastor used a shell to dip the water from the baptismal font and sprinkle it upon their heads.  Each baby was given a rose and the shell as a symbol of their baptism.  I was able to request specific members of the congregation to read scripture and prayers, as well as request the song "I Was There to Hear Your Borning Cry".

Immediately after the service, my siblings, in-laws, and nieces and nephews joined us at our home for sandwiches, chips, and cookies.  As always, we all ate too much, yet still had plenty of leftovers. 

I feel so blessed that my children have such strong support from their church family and extended family.  It fills me with joy to be able to celebrate James, Amelia, and Maddie joining the Church and being recognized as children of God.  It is such a privilege and great responsibility to be able to foster a strong faith within my children.

I'll close with the prayer we recited together as a body of Christ.

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