A baby held in a man's arms.Baptism (which comes from the Greek verb “to wash”) is the universal ritual of initiation into the fellowship of followers of Jesus Christ known as the Church. Christians, whether adults or babies, are baptized with water in the name of the Holy Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Baptism is one of the two holy acts mandated by Jesus. The other is the sacred meal of bread and wine known as the Eucharist.

While people are baptized as individuals, they are baptized into a community of faith that promises to:

  • persevere in resisting evil
  • forgive one another, as God has forgiven them
  • seek and serve Christ in all persons
  • strive for justice and peace among all people, respecting the dignity of every human being
  • strive to safeguard the integrity of God’s creation, and
  • respect, sustain and renew the life of the Earth

Parents bringing children to be baptized make a commitment to nurture them in the faith and life of the Christian community.

All baptized persons are encouraged to participate in God’s work in the world through their gifts of time, talent and financial resources.

Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child

The church also offers a service of Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child. This service provides an opportunity for a family to give thanks for the birth or adoption of a child and to pray for God’s help in the child’s care and nurture.

Next Steps

If you would like to be baptized, have your child baptized or have a service of Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child, speak to your parish priest or contact your local Anglican church.