Are you curious about or interested in baptism, confirmation, reception, or renewal of baptismal vows? Do you want to know more? Start with the baptismal liturgy in the Book of Common Prayer on page 299. Read through it. Pray through it. See what it brings up in you. Baptism is the foundation for confirmation, reception, and renewal of baptismal. (That’s why it’s the first sacrament in our Prayer Book.)
“Baptism is full initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ’s Body the Church. The bond which God establishes in Baptism is indissoluble.” (Book of Common Prayer, 298) The candidate is anointed with holy oil and told, “You are sealed by the Holy Spirit in Baptism and marked as Christ’s own forever.” (Ibid., 308)
Confirmation is when a baptized person “make[s] a public affirmation of their faith and commitment to the responsibilities of their Baptism” and “receive[s] the laying on of hands by the bishop.” (Ibid., 412) The bishop prays that God will strength, empower, and sustain the individual. (Ibid., 309)
At reception the bishop recognizes one who was confirmed in another tradition “as a member of the one holy, catholic and apostolic church” and receives him or her into the Communion of the Episcopal Church. (Ibid., 310)
Renewal of Baptismal Vows
All baptized persons are given opportunities throughout the year to reaffirm their baptismal vows. When present, the bishop prays for the individual, “May the Holy Spirit who has begun a good work in you, direct and uphold you in the service of Christ and his kingdom.” (Ibid.)
You are never too young to be baptized (yes, even babies) and you are never too old to be confirmed or received. And the time is always right for renewal.
During the liturgy on September 17 Bishop Read will say, “The Candidate(s) will not be presented.” Please let me know if you have questions about or want to discuss whether that might be you.
Peace be with you,