Monday, May 15, 2006
After much prayerful consideration, I have decided to be conditionally (re)baptised on Pentecost. My children are being baptised that morning, and I feel drawn to join them.
It is not that I question the efficacy of The Big Dunk. Not at all. I believe I truly was reborn on that day. And I believe that is the basic gist of baptism.
But on that day, the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were not spoken. It was a Unitarian baptism, performed by my dear Unitarian minister. And more and more, I am coming to feel that I want to be baptised in the name of my Beloved, once and for ever.
It is tricky, though, with an existing baptism... because I also feel that a single shot is all anyone really needs.
So there is this excellent loophole called a conditional baptism. I suspect it is more often used for people on their death bed, when a priest giving last rites has no clue if the person in question is baptised or not. It goes something like this: 'If you are not already baptised, I baptise you in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit..."
It is a bit clunky, but covers all the theological bases.
Another, wonderful, aspect of getting (re)baptised in the Episcopal church is that my kids and I get to have sponsors. These are people who will pray for us, guide us on our Christian paths.... help us when we need it. My kids are going to be sponsored by two of my husband's siblings... both of whom are Catholics, but who have agreed to step in for this. My mother, too, will sponser them. And my sponsor is going to be Fr. P, which seems absolutely correct in every possible way. It is he who has guided me so patiently thus far on this path.
I may ask another friend to sponsor me as well. She, too, has played a role in my spiritual journey. And she is a chick, which might come in handy sometimes!