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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

I love being Catholic. Even though I still have a lot to learn about my own faith, I am reminded today on the Feast of Jesus' Baptism that I am part of a beautiful family of believers, united in baptism.

I have really been enjoying our family's celebrations of different feast days - something we've never done before last year. It fills in the gaps where my own spirituality is lacking. I suppose that's why the Church holds such an eventful liturgical calendar filled with celebration and penance, because sometimes (or most of the time) we need guidance in how to spend our time and energy.

Would we ever remember to sacrifice and unite our suffering with Christ if there wasn't a Lent? Or would we remember to prepare and await for Christ's second coming if there wasn't an Advent? Or would we rejoice in Christ's resurrection and the future of our own without an Easter season? I probably wouldn't remember to do so in between my cycles of laundry and grocery shopping.

And that's also the beauty in our traditional prayers (you know what I'm talking about, Our Father who art in Heaven...). They teach us to pray when our own wills aren't able to do so and when I'm so tired of paying bills and cleaning up spit up and I've got no more words left, I'm thankful for a Hail Mary.

And you could say the same for all of the signs and symbols we use, like holy water, oil, the use of color, candles, ashes, palms, the crucifix, images or statues of Mary and the saints - because seeing, touching, smelling, and feeling can only enhance our faith and make it more real for us. Dang. It's pretty great being Catholic.

So, I'm not sure why I went off on such a tangent. But I'm glad I reminded myself of everything from above. I really just wanted to post a video and photo of our kids with their sacramentals and gifts from their baptism while we all renewed our baptismal vows (I found a guide here). First I was going to just light both of their candles but then I found all of their gifts and pictures on the same shelf so I just set it all up and reminded Joan what the different things were (as though I had been planning this for a while). It was a sweet little ceremony and something I look forward to doing again.

May the peace of the Lord be with you always. (And also with me!)


Kaitlin @ More Like Mary said...

Alisha!! This is a beautiful idea! I am definitely going to be copying this!

And what a perfect explanation of the Church calendar. I've been trying to come up with an explanation for it in my head ever since I talked with a Jehovah's Witness last month. You stated exactly what I haven't been able to put my finger on.

Jude and Alisha said...

Aw, thanks Kaitlin. Just think, next year - when your baby is almost 1 and you're still living here ;) we can have a little ceremony together... Tell that to Ted and maybe he'll let you stay.