In the Catholic Church, baptism as a rite of passage is very rich and symbolic and in the Catholic tradition, baptism has two purposes. The first one is welcoming the person who is being baptized into the Christian family and the second purpose is the infusion of the grace of the Holy Spirit of Jesus into the person being baptized (Mediatrixsolutions, 2015). The godparents and the parents of the child being baptized are called and asked to name the child. Parents have the privilege of naming their children and giving them an identity and baptism is a way of faith.
After parents have committed to raising their children in the practice of faith, godparents are asked whether they are ready to help the parents in their duty to raise the child as Christian parents (Mediatrixsolutions, 2015). The godparents represent the Catholic Church in assisting the parents in teaching a child more about God and the teachings of the Catholic Church and proper morals. The Minister then places the sign of a cross in the forehead of each child symbolizing Christian’s faith and afterward, a scripture is read in regards to what the Bible says about Baptism. The Minister then leads the congregation in intercessory prayers asking the Lord to assist them in being good witnesses of the faith and asks the Saints to intercede for them in prayers that they may be living faith for their children.
According to (Steven Media, 2020) baptism occurs in a room with witnesses and the person being baptized is immersed in water after a short prayer, dressed in white attires. The witnesses are afterward heard clapping, laughing, and continue singing. This particular baptism ceremony was interesting as those who were being baptized didn’t seem to understand or take the baptism seriously. The persons being baptized by water are adults and are baptized with their existing names different from the Catholic Church where names are given by parents (Steven Media, 2020).
The Indian baptism took place in the Udalguri District of Assam India under the Sapkhaiti Baptist Church (Infotainment World, 2019). The person baptizing people is standing inside water in a pond or a small river and calls in those being baptized after reading scripture. After baptism, each person walks out of the water and is handed a white scarf that is placed around their necks, and the people witnessing the ceremony are taking photos and videos.
Baptism is an outward sign of what goes on in the inner person and baptism only has meaning when there is belief. When someone is baptized, one dedicates their life and the way they are to God and are baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Aspley Christ Church, 2015). One starts their journey after baptism and one is required to continue their relationship with God by praying, sharing, growing in faith, and being with other Christians (Aspley Christ Church, 2015). This explains the self-identity process in human beings.
The concept of Christianity according to Lewis is that “Christianity is a myth working in us in the same way as others but with a tremendous difference that it really happened” (Solganick, 9). My interpretation is that people practice Christianity in different ways as seen in the Catholic Church, baptism occurs at a very young age but in India, baptism is done on adults where they are immersed in water. Pagans on the other hand have a God who is expressed through the minds of poets (Solganick, 9).
The baptism experience was exciting to watch especially the parts where grownups were totally immersed in water and toddlers had a sign of the cross on their foreheads while being held by their parents and godparents. Human beings rely heavily on the teachings of values that were instilled in them from a very young age and now I understand why people are baptized and have god parents.
Aspley Christ Church. (2015, June 6). Home [Aspley Christ Church]. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoPEMVTAl9M&feature=youtu.be&ab_channel=AspleyChristChurch
Forever Video. (n.d). Home [Forever Video]. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zgmLiXtyI0&feature=youtu.be&ab_channel=ForeverVideo-TorontoVideographyPhotography
Infotainment World. (2019, January 12). Home [Infotainment World]. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coHFPvbEF08&feature=youtu.be&ab_channel=InfotainmentWorld
Mediatrixsolutions. (2015, May 8). Home [Mediatrixsolutions]. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pD7kE8qUz5A&feature=youtu.be&ab_channel=mediatrixsolutions
Steven Media. (2020, March 15). Home [Steven Media]. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e5Pqfz0Xew0&feature=youtu.be&ab_channel=Stevenmedia
Solganick, Harvey. “CS Lewis’s Mythopoetic Baptism of the Imagination.” (2018).