Baptism at Spring Park United Church

Baptism is one of two sacraments within the United Church of Canada.  A sacrament is defined as an outward and physical sign of an inward and spiritual grace. It is a sacred act, something we do to mark or point to a holy reality.

“Baptism is the sacrament and Christian initiation in which we become a member of the universal Christian church and begin an active life within a community of faith, a congregation.” (1982 World Congress of Churches)

Baptism is the visible sign and seal of the covenant love of God, of incorporation into Christ and entry into the membership of the Church. As such it is the initial step in an ongoing process of Christian maturity (28th General Council, 1980). “Baptism may be administered to adults who have received instruction in the Christian faith and who desire to enter into the life and work, fellowship and mission of the Church. It may be administered to children of believing parent(s) or guardian(s) as a sign that they are born within the fellowship of the Church.  Parents or guardians are expected to train their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. The Church is under the most solemn obligation to provide for their Christian instruction.” (United Church Manual, 2004, 2.16.1)

 

Baptism Policy at Spring Park United Church

We welcome all people, children and adult alike, into our church by Baptism.  Each request will be considered individually and, as per the United Church Manual, will be presented to Session for approval.                                 

1. The Sacrament of Baptism is available to all persons, infants and adults.  In the United Church, baptism is an initiation into Christ’s Body, the Church, and into a community of faith.  In the case of children, at least one parent/guardian must have been baptized or a member of a United Church or have the intention of doing so.  It is encouraged that at least one parent/guardian making the request be an active participant in the life of a congregation, or that at least this is her/his intention. 

2.  Parents or guardians who present their children for baptism or Adults who wish to be baptized will meet with the minister to discuss the meaning of baptism and the importance for the child/Adult to be nurtured and guided in the Christian faith.        

3.  The Sacrament of Baptism normally occurs during regular Sunday morning worship where the whole congregation can participate.  In extraordinary cases baptism may be held at another time and place.  In such cases, a member of Session will be present to represent the congregation. Although we ask that photographers not disrupt the worship by taking pictures during the Baptism ceremony, they are certainly welcome to do so following worship.                              

This policy is the responsibility of the Spring Park United Church Session and is reviewed annually.

If you would like further information about baptism at Spring Park United Church or would like to arrange for a baptism, please contact the Spring Park United Church Office at 902-368-1822 or email spring.park@pei.aibn.com.                                                                                               

Excerpt from

A Song of Faith

 

In company with the churches

of the Reformed and Methodist traditions,

we celebrate two sacraments as gifts of Christ:

baptism and holy communion.

In these sacraments the ordinary things of life

—water, bread, wine—

point beyond themselves to God and God’s love,

teaching us to be alert

to the sacred in the midst of life.

 

Before conscious thought or action on our part,

we are born into the brokenness of this world.

Before conscious thought or action on our part,

we are surrounded by God’s redeeming love.

Baptism by water in the name of the Holy Trinity

is the means by which we are received, at any age,

into the covenanted community of the church.

It is the ritual that signifies our rebirth in faith

and cleansing by the power of God.

Baptism signifies the nurturing, sustaining,

and transforming power of God’s love

and our grateful response to that grace.

                                      ~  Song of Faith, UCC 2006