Word and Deed. January 10th, 2021

Baptism of the Lord

In one parish, after adults were baptized during the Easter Vigil, the pastor would announce what each of the newly Baptized would do for the parish. It might be visiting the sick, or tutoring in the school, or helping deliver meals to the elderly and shut-ins. It made very clear the Baptismal call to service and renewed the parish’s commitment to practice what they believed. The life of the parish flourished because faith and spirituality were a way of life, and not just another good idea.

When Jesus is baptized, the Spirit descends on Him and the voice from heaven identifies Jesus as the Son on whom God’s favor rests. His ministry is about to begin, and yet, immediately after this extraordinary scene, the Spirit will lead Jesus into the wilderness to be tested by Satan and strengthened for the work ahead.

Baptism is more than a social event. It is a commitment to a journey of faith and a special relationship to the Father. Our parents and godparents stand with us as we are joined once and for all to the Body of Christ, the Church. We will be tested and strengthened, challenged to live a life worthy of the grace and favor bestowed on us.

We are God’s children and God’s favor rests on us.

James Gaffney,
Karides Lic. to Saint George Publishing