The Beginning of New Life in Christ
Also called "The Door of the Sacraments," Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit (vitae spiritualis ianua), and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church, and made sharers in her mission (Catechism 1213).
Baptism is the beginning of new life in Christ. A life of holiness sanctified by God's grace and made possible through this sacrament of initiation. Sin is washed away when God enters our soul, just as darkness disappears in the light. Through Baptism we enter into communion with Christ's death, burial and resurrection. Through the Holy Spirit we are purified, justified and sanctified. Baptism is the beginning of our life lived in holiness, our faith born in community, and membership in the Body of Christ, the Holy Catholic Church.
Through the work of Baptism:
- we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God in Christ
- we become members of the Body of Christ, incorporated into the Church, and become a temple of the Holy Spirit
- we share in the priesthood of Christ and the mission of the Church
- we are given new life in Christ through the Holy Spirit
Baptism imprints on the soul an indelible spiritual sign, the character, which consecrates the baptized person for Christian worship.
Receiving The Sacrament of Baptism:
Baptism is necessary for salvation and is validly conferred only by a washing of true water while pronouncing the invocation of the Most Holy Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Canon 849). In keeping with the sanctity of this sacrament, all who desire Baptism should reflect on the commitment that comes with choosing to follow Christ:
- Having become a member of the Church, the person baptized belongs no longer to himself, but to Him who died and rose for us. Therefore, he is called to serve, obey and submit to the will of God through the leadership and the mission of the Church (Catechism 1269).
- Reborn as sons of God, the baptized must profess before men the faith they have received and participate in the apostolic and missionary activity of the People of God (Catechism 1270).
- Parents must especially take great care to fulfill the role given to them by God as nurturers of the life entrusted to them (Catechism 1251).
- The task of Godparents is truly important. In helping the newly baptized on the road to Christian life, they become formal teachers of the Church and along with the Church community take on the responsibility for the development and safeguarding of the grace given at Baptism (Catechsim 1255).
If you would like to receive the sacrament of Baptism for yourself or your child, please click on the link below for instructions, documents and contact information: Baptism at Good Shepherd.