Our Catholic Faith Series 2017
Week 2- January 21-22, 2017
Our Catholic Faith is a series of responses to questions being raised in our local faith community. We hope these responses will help deepen your understanding of our Catholic faith, strengthen your commitment and draw you closer to Jesus himself. (See www.celina-ic.org for additional responses)
Baptism – the indelible mark. Can a person be rebaptized? Most mainline Christian churches such as Catholic, Lutheran and Methodist, believe, profess and teach the indelible mark of baptism and do not rebaptize. In the Catholic Church, we believe that baptism imprints on the soul an indelible spiritual sign, the character, which consecrates the baptized person for Christian worship. It incorporates us into the Church or as our IC school children proudly say, makes us “God’s holy boys and girls, one big happy family.” Given once for all, baptism is not repeated.
While baptism is not repeated, there may be deep and defining spiritual moments that sometimes occur in our lives; significant moments where we experience a rebirth of faith, or a coming home to the Lord; encounters with the Lord himself that transform our lives completely. These are wonderful gifts and blessings from the Lord that are cause for celebration and recommitment, but not rebaptism that suggests our baptism in the Lord was somehow lacking. How might one celebrate these amazing moments of grace from the Lord? If we lost our way or drifted from the Lord in sinful ways, our celebration may be the sacrament of reconciliation. It may seem odd to think of reconciliation as a celebration, and yet recall stories of Jesus finding the lost and offering forgiveness such as the lost sheep or the prodigal son. Each person coming home to the Lord is invited to celebrate the amazing gift of forgiveness and being found. Significant moments may be celebrated with a blessing from the Lord – blessing of a marriage after a rocky time or blessing for beginning a new journey in life. They could be marked by a special journey or pilgrimage to a church or shrine, spending time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. Or it could be celebrated by recommitting oneself through a profession of faith.
The indelible mark of baptism is obvious when a person from another faith tradition becomes a member of the Catholic Church at the Easter vigil. Their baptism in another church is respected and they are received into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church receiving the sacrament of Confirmation and First Holy Communion.
Each time we enter the church, we dip our fingers in holy water and make the sign of the cross as a reminder of our baptism. May our baptism always remind us of our commitment to the Lord Jesus and draw us closer to him.
Courageously Catholic is coming Wednesday, February 22, 2017, at 7 PM. Watch for details.
We are a Eucharistic community rooted in faith and gifted by God with time, talent and treasure. Liturgy is at the heart of our faith, and our response is love in action. We share the gift of faith through our Catholic elementary school, religious education for children and adults and by reaching out to those who are lonely, hungry or hurt. We invite you to join us in worship and any of our parish ministries. If you have any questions, suggestions or would like more information about our parish family, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 419-586-6648.
The Face of Mercy with Bishop Joseph R. Binzer
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