Baptisms at All Saints take place during the main Sunday morning service and follow the Baptismal liturgy 2006 of the Scottish Episcopal Church.
The congregation which gather for a baptism are doing more than watching, they are participating in the rite. Participating by renewing their own vows made when they were baptised/confirmed. Participating as part of the wider Church that the newly baptised is joining. Participating in the future Christian nurture of the newly baptised, by their example of Christian living. It is for this reason that the service should take place as part of the normal service pattern of the church.
In the Scottish Episcopal Church we offer baptism to both adults and children, including young babies. While Jesus was not baptised until an adult in the Jordan River, we believe that regardless of age every person should have the opportunity to follow the example that Jesus set.
A Baptism begins with preparation, when the Rector goes and speaks to the individual or parents of those wishing baptism. During those conversations the Rector explains the service and deals with any questions or concerns.
There are three symbols that take place during the baptism.
- Firstly the pouring of water over the head. This symbolises not only Jesus’ own baptism but also the washing away of an old life so that a new life with Christ can begin.
- The second symbol is the anointing of the newly baptised with oil that the bishop has previously blessed. The symbol here is two fold in that oil was used in Old Testament times to anoint those chosen by God, while the anointing often takes the form of a cross on the forehead a symbol of the new life promised through the cross and a reflection of passages in the New Testament which speak of those being marked as Christ’s own.
- The final symbol is that of giving a candle which has been lit from the Paschal Candle. The Paschal Candle is a large candle which is renewed each Easter morning to signify the new life that Christ offers through his resurrection. The giving of a candle to the newly baptised symbolises that they have to take, and share, that Light of Christ wherever they go.
These symbols while important are mere reminders of the wonders that God has, is and will perform in the newly baptised life. Baptism is the beginning of a life-long journey of faith and discovery.
If you would like to be baptised or have a child baptised, please contact the The Rector before making any other arrangements, thank you.