Lutherans trust that in holy baptism the triune God delivers us from the forces of evil, puts our sinful self to death, gives us new birth, adopts us as children, and makes us members of the body of Christ, the church. The Christian community at worship celebrates God’s gift of baptism in a number of ways.
- The sacrament itself normally takes place in the midst of the worshipping assembly as a sign that in baptism we are made one with Christ and with the whole people of God.
- On behalf of the whole church, we promise to support new brothers and sisters, confess the faith with them, and welcome them into the body of Christ.
- Water connected to the word – God’s saving promise in Jesus Christ – is at the center of the baptismal celebration. The font at Christ the King Church is located at the entrance to the nave to remind all who enter that we come to the assembly by way of our baptism.
- Although a person is baptized once, the gift of baptism continues throughout a Christian’s life. We constantly remind each other that we are baptized and give thanks for the gift of baptism. Rites of confession and forgiveness are most often lead from the baptismal font to remind each other that such confession and absolution are encounters with baptismal identity.
- Along with the washing of baptism, Lutherans take seriously the idea that teaching belongs also to baptism. Instruction in the faith is important for all who undertake baptism and affirmation of baptism.
- Parents and sponsors accompany the baptized child in growing in the life of baptism. Sponsors may be family members and friends. They need to be baptized and members of a Christian church.
[Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship, p. 225]