A baptismal liturgy for All Saints’

Introduction of the Family & Candidate for Baptism
An introductory statement. For example:
One: For the past four years, P1 has been celebrating God’s presence and Christ’s love with us, since he came to Canada from the Philippines. Last year, his wife, P2, and first son were able to join him, here in Canada and – along with their newest child – they’ve been with us since that time. Today, they bring the youngest member of their family – NN – for baptism.

Let us come together in thanksgiving and celebration that N is part of God’s creation, and that he is part of this part of the family and household of God! Alleluia!

All: Alleluia!

Blessing of the Water & Light
(A child from the congregation comes forward to pour water in the font. A young adult brings the Christ candle to the font for the blessing.)
One: Holy God, you moved over the void –
and into the chaos you said a word,
“Light!”
All: With that word
you blessed all creation.
With this light
you bless all creation.
Alleluia!

One: Holy God, with that light we could see
the waters that roiled and boiled.
All: The water that gave birth to all things.
The water that gave birth to us.
These waters that celebrate
new life in Christ!
Alleluia!

One: With your love –
All: Bless this light!
One: With your love –
All: Bless this water!
One: With your love –
All: Bless this child!
May it be so!

Questions & Promises of the Parents:
P2 and P1, you came to talk with me about baptism, and about why it is important to you that your child be baptised. So that the entire community can understand your desire, I would ask you these questions.

What is the name of this child? NN

Do you bring NN to be baptised? We do.

Do you believe in God, who has created and is creating? We do.

Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh,
and that Jesus came to the world to reconcile it and make it new? We do.

Do you believe in the Holy Spirit,
and that the Holy Spirit remains in the world,
teaching us what it means to be part of
God’s family and household –
and, for us as Christians,
part of God’s family and household in Christ’s love?
We do.

Will you do everything in your power to teach N. what it means to be part of God’s family and household in Christ’s love? Will you love him and care for him, to the best of your ability and beyond, each and every day of your life?
We will, God being our helper!

Question & Promise of the Congregation
You have heard P1 & P2’s responses.

So now I turn to you, sibs in Christ’s love, to ask you a question and to ask you to make a promise. If, when the time comes, you do not believe you can make that promise in good conscience, I would ask you to remain silent.

But –
if you are ready to live it out –
then let P2 and P1 and N.
and God –
hear it with a shout of joy!

Will you do everything in your power to teach N. what it means to be part of God’s family and household in Christ’s love? Will you learn with him and from him, and will you love him and care for him as a child of the Creator and a sibling in Christ?
All: We will, God being our guide!

Is there anyone here willing to take on the specific responsibility of praying for N., by name, each and every day of your life? Please, come forward and join N.’s family at the font! (Those taking on a ministry of constant prayer for N. come forward.)

All Saints’ Remembrance:
Today is All Saints’ Sunday – a day when we remember all of our sisters and brothers who have entered into God’s house through death. While we celebrate that they are in God’s presence, we continue to miss them, here, in this community. In baptism, we remember that we are connected with all of God’s people and with all of Christ’s disciples throughout history – those who have already lived, those who are living now, and those who are yet to be born. We are all that “great cloud of witnesses” who can never be separated from God’s love.

As a reminder that they have taught us many things about God’s love, we name them now – brothers and sisters, grandmothers and grandfathers in faith:
(The community calls out the names of those who have died since the last time of remembrance.)

Their love is part of God’s love. God’s love is neverending.
God’s love is present with us. Their love is present with us.
Alleluia!
All: Alleluia!

Baptism & Blessing
NN –
we baptise you in the name of God the Father,
whose arms are open wide (handful of water is poured on the baptised person’s head),
and in the name of God the Son,
who walks with you all of your days (handful of water is poured on the baptised person’s head),
and in the name of God the Holy Spirit,
whose wings will keep you safe (handful of water is poured on the baptised person’s head).

(The family is invited to lay hands on the baptised person’s head and shoulders, the rest of the community standing is invited to lay their hands on celebrant and the family.)
NN
we bless you in the name of God the Mother,
whose arms will hold you close;
and in the name of God the Child,
who teaches us how to love;
and in the name of God the Holy Spirit,
whose wings will carry you to places you can only dream of.

We mark you with the sign of the cross (water is used to make the sign of the cross on the baptised person’s forehead)
so the world will know, and you will never be able to forget,
that you are a beloved child of God.

Welcome (little) brother/sister!

Congregational Blessing (sung):
(As the congregation sings a blessing appropriate to the context and family, the family walks down and back up the aisle for the congregation to see the newly baptised person.)

Presentation of Bible, Candle & Certificate
(At St. Andrew’s the congregation gives an age-appropriate bible to the baptised person. If they are an infant or child, we ask that the parents read some of the stories to their child, like they would read other storybooks. The baptised person is also given the baptismal candle and certificate.)

One: Go in peace, to love and to serve the Lord!
All: Thanks be to God!

(The family is seated and the service continues.)

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