“Holy Baptism is full initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ’s Body, the Church” (Book of Common Prayer, p. 298).
Infant & Child Baptisim
Through his or her Baptism, each child of God becomes a member of the Church and enters a lifelong journey of faith and continuing spiritual growth with support from the whole community of God's People. It is desirable that everyone receive the sacrament of Holy Baptism as early as possible, and parents and prospective Godparents are urged to first prayerfully search their hearts and commit themselves to their own Baptismal Covenants, to raising their children (or God children) in the Christian faith and life, and to helping them to grow into the full stature of Christ. Having made that commitment, parents and Godparents are then urged to bring themselves and their infants and/or children for preparation for baptism. There is no minimum age for children to receive Holy Communion. When the parents feel their baptized child is ready to receive Holy Communion, the parish priest should be consulted. To aid our children in this new spiritual experience, we offer First Communion Classes.
Adults seeking to be baptized should first prayerfully search their hearts and be prepared to make a mature public affirmation of faith and commitment to Christ=s service in the Episcopal Church. Having done so, they should contact the Church office to arrange for instruction and preparation for baptism. Persons who prepare for and receive the sacrament of Holy Baptism in adulthood commit themselves to Christ=s service in the Episcopal Church, and, if baptized or confirmed by a Bishop, gain the right to vote and hold elected office in the church. Adults baptized by a minister or Parish Priest need to be Received in order to so vote and hold office. As with those who were baptized as infants or children, adult candidates for Reception likewise participate in a focused period of study and service.
Those wishing to Reaffirm their Baptismal Vows
In the years following Confirmation or Reception into the Church many feel a need to renew their commitment to Christ and to receive a strengthening gift of the Holy Spirit through the laying on of hands by the Bishop. Reaffirmation of Baptismal Vows is available to these individuals and also those whose practice of the Christian life has lapsed and who awaken to a call from Christ to resume their spiritual journey. All those who have been Confirmed or Received into the Church should give prayerful consideration to Reaffirming their Baptismal Vows and enrolling in the study and service opportunities being offered for Confirmation, Reception and Renewal of Vows.