This past Easter Vigil we baptized two very young children, a girl and a boy. These baptisms occasioned our reciting The Baptismal Covenant. This is a covenant the entire congregation pledges to uphold. There are also two sets of promises that the parents and godparents commit to, which begin the Baptismal Rite. These read as follows:
"Will you be responsible for seeing that the child you present is brought up in the Christian faith and life?"
"Will you, by your prayers and witness, help this child to grow into the full stature of Christ?"
The parents and godparents answer: "We will, with God's help." With all the focus on the adults gathered around the baptismal font, it's easy to forget that the entire congregation signs on to these vows, as well. Soon after the parents and godparents make their promises, the priest addresses the congregation, saying: "Will you who witness these vows do all in your power to support these persons [the children being baptized] in their life in Christ?" At the Easter Vigil the people replied, "We will!"
These promises are made at each and every Baptism.
How do we as a congregation make good on these vows? It's very simple: by supporting, serving, and providing leadership for our children and youth ministries. This Sunday, April 15, 9:30 to 10:15 a.m., parents and other interested parishioners will gather in the Parish Hall for round-table conversations around how we can best advance our Sunday School for children, our Youth ministry (which we share with St. Paul's Episcopal Church), and the worship experience for these young Christians.
If you feel so called, please join us for this gathering, which we're calling "Building Faithful Families." --Fr. Abshire