2Our ResponsibilityTo become a Greek Orthodox Christian, we are first introduced to the Church when we are 40 days old, when our family brings us to be blessed. We are Catechumens of the Faith.In order to become a member of the Church, we are baptized in the Name of the Father, and Son and Holy Spirit.
3“As it is written in the Prophets: “Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,Who will prepare Your way before You.”+“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:‘Prepare the way of the Lord,Make His paths straight.’(Mark 1:3)
4“Why did St. John come to baptize?” “John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.”+(Mark 1:4)
5St. John prophesied……“There comes One after me who is mightier than I, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose. “I indeed baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” (Mark 1:7-8)
6…and Jesus came to St. John…. …and John tried to prevent Him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”But Jesus answered and said to him,“Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.+ (Matthew 3: 14-15)
7St. John baptized Christ and immediately… “… the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.+And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying:“This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”+
8Kontakion: (Fourth Tone) “Today You appeared to the world, and Your light, O Lord, has left its mark upon us as in fuller understanding we sing to You: “You came, You were made manifest, the unapproachable light.”
9Christ was Baptized by John the Baptist At that time, the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw Him, they worshipped Him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded to you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age. Amen. (Matt. 28:16-20)
10Apolytikion: (First Tone) “Lord, when You were baptized in the Jordan, the worship of the Trinity was made manifest. For the voice of the Father gave witness to You, calling You Beloved; and the Spirit, in the form of a dove, confirmed the certainty of His words. Glory to You, Christ our God, who appeared and enlightened the world.”
11“All those who have been baptized in Christ, have put on Christ…..” The Sacrament of Baptism incorporates us into the Church, the Body of Christ, and is our introduction to the life of the Holy Trinity
12How are we Baptized?Water is a natural symbol of cleansing and newness of life.
13The BaptizingWhen he has anointed the whole body, the Priest baptizes him (her), holding him (her) erect, and looking towards the East, says:“The servant of God (Name) is baptized in the Name of the Father. Amen. And of the Son, Amen. And of the Holy Spirit, Amen.”At each invocation the Priest immerses him (her) and raises him (her) up again.
14Father, Son and Holy Spirit Through the three-fold immersion in the waters of Baptism in the Name of the Holy Trinity, one dies to the old ways of sin and is born to a new life in Christ.
15When are we Baptized?Following the custom of the early Church, Orthodoxy encourages the baptism of infants.
16Holy ChrismationIn the Sacrament of Chrismation, the priest anoints the various parts of the body of the newly-baptized with Holy Oil saying: "The seal of the gifts of the Holy Spirit…."
17“Holy Communion”The Church believes that the Sacrament is bearing witness to the action of God who chooses a child to be an important member of His people.
18“Godparents”Our Godparents become an important part of our lives. They are also responsible for the development of our Orthodox ‘growing’. Also, our Orthodox ‘family’ helps us to become a part of our Orthodox Faith and Church Community.
19We are baptized because…. "He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration baptism and renewing by the Holy Spirit." (Titus 3:5)The Sacrament of Baptism emphasizes the truths that not only is each person a valuable member of the Church, but also each one is blessed by the Spirit with certain gifts and talents.
20“We are responsible….”From the day of their baptism, children are expected to mature in the life of the Spirit, through their family and the Church.
21As we grow in age, maturity and spiritual understanding, we become responsible for our own journey to our salvation.Having started with the guidance of our parents and Godparents, we now have grown into the realization that the Church plays a very big role in who we are and who we will become, as adults, spiritually and most especially as good examples of faithful Orthodox Christians.We now must look to our Church life and our Orthodoxy to helps us be strong and committed Christians.
22Information for this lesson comes from: Archiodiocese web site:Produced by:Maria Angeliadis, EdD