We need history. We need it in order to understand ourselves, personally and collectively. The pieces of our histories may not have always been the most positive, honest, exemplary, dignified, proud and best moments of our lives, but they are ours. We have to acknowledge, remember, accept, and often heal them. We cannot forget them or pretend that they never existed. As horrible as the atrocities of events like Auschwitz, brutal injustices committed throughout the human journey, or personal painful experiences in our own stories, we need to remember. These times when humanity in general or people in particular have lost their way are times that need to be reconciled and redeemed. If we lose the memories, we will make the same mistakes again. The human soul needs a strong sense of affirmation, direction, and clear purpose. Without these essentials, we will easily run amuck and repeat the sins of our past. God’s voice throughout history has spoken precisely about this! We are reminded through the voices and example of many prophets and witnesses not to make the same mistakes again, come back to center, discover the purpose given to us by God, maintain a sense of proper direction, seek healing for wounds and be reconciled to our Creator. Baptism is so incredibly important for the salvation of humankind, not only eternally but here and now. Our existence depends upon it. It gives us the affirmation we need from God by gifting us with the same intimate relationship Jesus had with the Father. We are blessed with the direction and clear purpose we need in order to be productive stewards and faithful Christians. Baptism calls us to remember, accept, and deal with the sins and inequities of our past regardless of how hurtful and serious. We consciously choose to turn away from them and put on the new life of Christ. To do this well, we must look hard and long at our sins and failings, listen to what they are saying and learn from them. If we ignore the past, collectively or personally, or pretend that it never happened, we will never grow. We will surely die. People need to hear the message, lived and spoken, delivered by the baptized members of the Body of Christ. It is an essential message of hope that is layered with visions of justice, peace, reconciliation, redemption, blessing, and healing. It is a message that helps us remember what has gone before, the graces and the sins, and bring ourselves by God’s help where we need to be. We are called to do much more than sit home behind our closed doors. We have a message to deliver. Are we ready to do so?  ©LPi