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Baptism at NHCC

Pastor and deacon behind baptismal fontWe rejoice at the opportunity to celebrate the sacrament of baptism with members and friends of this parish. Baptism is God's gift, celebrated and sealed by our action. It is one of two sacraments in the Protestant church, and baptism with water and the Holy Spirit that includes the traditional Trinitarian formula is recognized across denominations and divisions of the Christian family. That is, in many ways it is the one thing on which we (almost) all agree.  You are baptized once and for all, and even if you change churches it doesn't need to be repeated.

Here at NHCC we are able to baptize the children of members and friends alike. We ask that you establish some relationship with our worshipping community and come for more than just one day, but since we see baptism as God's gift we know that it is given beyond simply our own membership walls.

Pastor Ken with baby, Pastor Gretchen in backgroundWhat must one do to pursue this sacrament? Meet with a pastor, determine just how you will relate to the parish, and then make specific plans. Is baptism only for infants? Absolutely not. Infants, children, teens, and adults all have special opportunities to receive this gift. Our pastor has baptized folks in their eighties, which is quite a celebration!

Since baptism is a sacrament, there is obviously no charge for it. It is undertaken occasionally as the request arises, generally not on the first Sunday of the month when we celebrate communion. In addition to the traditional Trinitarian formula ("in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit…") our pastor has embraced the use of a several decade old additional prayer: "… one God who is Mother of us all." This maintains our historic faith and recognizes both our inclusive spirit and our theological awareness and growth.

If you would like to learn more about baptism here, please contact the office, or visit us in worship some week.  We are always happy to see you. For our Senior Pastor's thoughts about the significance of baptism in our lives, click here.  Another sermon on one of the meanings of baptism can be found here.  For the meaning of baptism according to the World Council of Churches, including Scripture references, click here.

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