The Covenant of Baptism
The Prayer of Thanksgiving
Hear also these words from holy Scripture:
“All of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death. We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” (from Rom. 6:3-4)
Baptism is the sign and seal of God’s promises to this covenant people.
In baptism God promises by grace alone
to forgive our sins,
to adopt us into the body of Christ, the church,
to send the Holy Spirit daily to renew and cleanse us, and
to resurrect us to eternal life.
This promise is made visible in the water of baptism.
[Water may be poured into the font at this time or during the Prayer of Thanksgiving.]
Jesus Christ is living water.
Through baptism Christ calls us to new obedience:
to love and trust God completely,
to forsake the evil of the world, and
to live a new and holy life.
Yet, when we fall into sin,
we must not despair of God’s mercy,
nor continue in sin,
for baptism is the sign and seal
of God’s eternal covenant of grace with us.
The Covenant of Baptism
come/s before us to make public profession of their faith
and to receive the sacrament of baptism.
[The minister addresses the candidate/s:]
Beloved of God,
I ask you before God and Christ’s church
to reject evil,
to profess your faith in Christ Jesus, and
to confess the faith of the church.
Do you renounce sin and the power of evil
in your life and in the world?
We/I renounce them.
Who is your Lord and Savior?
Jesus Christ is our/my Lord and Savior.
Will you be a faithful member of this congregation,
and, through worship and service,
seek to advance God’s kingdom
here and throughout the world?
We/I will, and we/I ask God to help us/me.
Do you promise
to accept the spiritual guidance of the church,
to walk in a spirit of Christian love with this congregation, and
to seek those things that make for unity, purity, and peace?
We/I do, God helping us/me.
[The minister may invite the congregation to join the candidate in reciting the Apostles’ Creed.]
Let us join with those who are to be baptized in professing the faith of the church and renewing our own baptismal covenant.
[The questions may be omitted.]
Do you believe in God the Father?
I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
Do you believe in Jesus Christ?
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to hell.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty.
From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
Do you believe in God the Holy Spirit?
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.
The Prayer of Thanksgiving
Minister: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Minister: Let us give thanks to the Lord, our God.
People: It is right to give our thanks and praise.
We give you thanks,
O holy and gracious God,
for the gift of water.
In the beginning of creation your Spirit moved over the waters.
In the waters of the flood you destroyed evil.
You led the children of Israel through the sea
into the freedom of the promised land.
In the river Jordan, John baptized our Lord,
and your Spirit anointed him.
By his death and resurrection
Jesus Christ, the Living Water,
frees us from sin and death,
and opens the way to life everlasting.
We thank you, O God, for the gift of baptism.
In this water you confirm to us
that we are buried with Christ in his death,
are raised to share in his resurrection,
are being renewed by the power of the Holy Spirit, and
are united to Christ in mission.
[The minister may pour or touch the water.]
Send your Holy Spirit, we pray,
upon these here baptized [minister may prefer to use the names of the candidates],
that this water may be a spring gushing up to eternal life.
Wash away their sin,
raise them to new life, and
graft them to the body of Christ.
Pour out your Holy Spirit upon them, that they may have
wisdom to discern their gifts,
strength to obey your will,
and joy in answering your call.
To you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, one God,
be all praise, honor, and glory, now and forever. Amen.
[Standing at the font, the minister addresses the person professing faith. If the person is able, she or he is invited to kneel. The minister then immerses the individual or pours/sprinkles water visibly and generously on the individual at the declaration of each name of the three persons of the Trinity, saying:]
I baptize you
in the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
[The minister may mark the sign of the cross on the forehead with a gesture or using oil, saying to each:]
The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face to you and give you peace.
[The minister may offer this or a similar prayer:]
Father in heaven, for Jesus’ sake,
stir up in [name/s],
the gift of your Holy Spirit.
Confirm their faith,
Guide their life,
Empower their serving,
Give them patience in suffering,
And bring them to everlasting life
through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
[The minister shall make the following declaration concerning those just baptized:]
In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ,
the only King and Head of the church,
[Name/s] are now
received into the membership of the holy catholic church,
engaged to confess Christ and
to be God's faithful servant/s until life's end.