The Central Features of Infant and Believers' Baptism Essay

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The Central Features of Infant and Believers' Baptism


Infant Baptism

Baptism is one of seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church. Infant baptism is the first of three sacraments of initiation to make a person a full member of the Church.

The parents and godparents of a child promise to make their faith known to the child as it grows older.

The priest welcomes the child into the Christian Community at the door of the Church and asks the parents and the god-parents if they are willing to bring the child up as a Christian.

A Reading from the Bible is read usually about baptism. The priest then gives a short homily explaining the readings to the people. After this
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These promises are based on an ancient creed known as the Apostles' Creed.

The priest then places the child over the font pouring water over the child's head three times saying, "(name)I baptise you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit".

A second anointing is performed with the oil of chrism. This oil is used in confirmation and at an ordination. It is a sign that the new Christian is a Prophet, a priest and a King.

Following the Early Christians tradition the child is then given a white garment as a sign of purity.

A candle is given to one of the parents who lights it from the Easter candle (known as the Paschal candle, which is a symbol of life and knowledge).

The Lord's Prayer is said, the priest gives a special blessing for the parents and the child.

Believers Baptism

In the Church of the first Christians most people who were baptised were adults. Gradually baptism of adults became less, because most adults were already Christian and more babies were baptised. However, the baptism of infants is still based on the baptism of adults and some Christian groups (such as The Quakers) still only baptise adults.

Christian groups who baptise adults believe that because baptism requires a choice and a personal commitment to be a Christian and a change of way of life, only an adult can make such a choice. These groups often

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