15 February 2008

Friday Five: The Water and the Word

From the RevGals...

1. When and where were you baptized? Do you remember it? Know any interesting tidbits?

Well, we emerse as Disciples, so I remember it very clearly. I was baptized on Palm Sunday in 1986. I was in fifth grade and had just completed Membership class. I remember wanting to take communion before my friend, Becky. So I made my confession of faith, not really understanding what it meant. I stood in front of the congregation in my junior choir robe and was SO nervous, but I very clearly remember our minister, Marvin, smiling his very gentle smile as he asked me, "Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the son of the Living God and have you accepted Him as your personal Lord and Savior?"
The baptism itself was in our beautiful, but little baptistry at Eureka. I think there were at least three girls baptized that day. The baptismal seemed HUGE and deep and I remember Marvin wearing his waders over his suit. I also remember being annoyed that I didn't feel much different afterwards.

2. What's the most unexpected thing you've ever witnessed at a baptism?

I baptized a woman in our church who was a larger woman. Our baptistry is RIDICULOUSLY shallow, so I always tell folks that it is imperative that they bend their knees as I lean them back. As I dunked this lady, she lifted up both feet and kept her legs straight. Essentially, she was floating, only with more splashing. Consequently, she had some problems standing back up and I kept saying, "PUT YOUR FEET DOWN!!" as firmly as I could until she did. That was just awkward. Though it did give my youth group at the time some hilarious fodder for a very irreverent cartoon.

3. Does your congregation have any special traditions surrounding baptisms?

In our congregation, as soon as someone wants to be baptized, we do it. We don't require it to be during the service. That's a little weird to me.

4. Are you a godparent or baptismal sponsor? Have a story to tell?

I AM a godparent. First, of my nephew Rhys, who was baptized recently. I missed his baptism. I'm also a godparent of Ethan and Caitlin, children of my childhood friend and her husband, one of my dearests from seminary. Because we baptize after the "age of accountability," godparents haven't traditionally performed much function in Disciples tradition.

5. Do you have a favorite baptismal song or hymn?

It's not a baptismal hymn, per se, but I love Go, My Children with My Blessing. I love the line that says, "In my love's baptismal river, I have made you mine forever."
I especially think it's perfect for people who performed baptisms in the creek out back behind the church. Great image.


Wyldth1ng said...

Awesome stuff!

I can see that lady floating, you must laugh a little in retrospect.

Sally said...

I'd love to see that cartoon...stuff like that reminds us we are human!!!

Rev Scott said...

I keep reading about these great hymns with baptismal imagery that I've completely missed - thanks for another one.

One problem we don't have baptizing babies in the Lutheran tradition is the lady you described. Our chuckles tend to come from the "baby made a funny noise/poopy/face" camp. Either way, it's certainly an interjection of the human into the sacrament!

Silent said...

Love this song too! I didn't think about it specifically with baptism, but now that you mention it, that line is especially neat.

RevHRod said...

Being a Lutheran, I don't have as much experience with adult baptismal garments. But I was fascinated to find that there are baptismal coulottes, for when the candidate is floating.

Anonymous said...

I love that song!!! It's being sung at my son's upcoming wedding. Great play!

Becky said...

I had no idea, April! I do remember getting baptized later than I was "supposed" to - I think it was the year after you probably, but I'm a little fuzzy on that. I don't remember that we didn't take communion before that though. I just can't remember if I did or not.
I love that hymn too. I use "I Was There to Hear Your Borning Cry" a lot too.

Singing Owl said...

Big lady....oh oh oh....!
How awkward. Poor her. And poor you.

Auntie Knickers said...

I enjoyed your play and it's always good to hear from our "cousins" the Disciples (as a UCC person). Revhrod, there are all kinds of special items available for immersion baptisms -- I think there are even white waders sold in some church-stuff catalogs.