Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Celebrating new life

 In His Holy dwelling,
we gathered in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

and brought our son, Joseph, to the baptismal fount of Jesus.

On the Feast of the Holy Family, exactly two years prior, the Holy Spirit had spoken to my heart, and I knew {knew} we were to adopt another child.  It felt incredibly overwhelming and full circle. A child was conceived in my heart on this very day, and here—two years later—our son is home and would be baptized into the light of Christ. 

We joined in chorus to sing the most beautiful Christmas songs on earth, and our ears heard an inspirational message of love, hope, and respect for each other, just as the Holy family's example had given. Monsignor Tom noted what a strong man Joseph was, and how our little Joseph traveled far to know Jesus, just as the Holy Family had traveled far to deliver their son into the world and the Wise Men had traveled from afar to meet Him.

The crown of Joseph's head was anointed with the same chrism 
that was once used for Kings.
I will never be able to sufficiently describe the look in our son's eyes as the Holy waters of purity were poured onto his forehead, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him. I truly believe he felt it in his soul. He was completely engulfed by a sense of peace and calmness, and it was clear to all who witnessed. 

His beautiful Godmother wiped dry his forehead, and I wiped tears from my eyes
such a beautiful gift to behold.

The day before Joseph’s baptism, I called Carrie and asked if they would take up the gifts at Mass. They are such a special family, and we loved the idea. When it was time to bring up the gifts, Carrie and Doug, Joseph's Godparents, stepped out of the pew, and she said, “Come Joseph.” With that, we watched the three of them proceed to the back of the church. I had no idea that was coming, and it took my breath away, actually! What a I had imagined Carrie and her family with this task, and in her beautiful heart, she had planned to take the gifts up with her Godson. Joseph marched up the aisle holding a basket that was nearly his size. The expression on his face was priceless—one of sheer honor and importance.

Many friends, family members, and parishioners welcomed Joseph into the Catholic faith. We were even joined by a dear friend of a different faith who witnessed her very first baptism.

We are all born as God’s children, yes, but the sacrament of baptism transforms us—saves us—by bringing us into His family eternally. By the grace of God, we are all adopted through baptism, if you will. And until we are rescued and baptized into His family, we are all orphans, aren’t we? It is a blessing to bring our children to the light of Christ.
I recently read a quote that I fell in love with: “Choosing to defend the orphan through adoption is beautiful, and God uses the adoption experience not only to redeem one of his beloved children, but also to transform your heart in ways you cannot begin to imagine.”
Adopting our precious children has done exactly that—transformed our hearts, just as God transforms our hearts when He adopts us through baptism. And on the Feast Day that we honor the Holy family, and revere the earthly parents whose son gave us everlasting life through His saving grace, how meaningful that we were able to baptize Joseph into His family. What a special way to end one wondrous year and begin a new...with new life in Christ.
“In Love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ.”

Ephesians 1:5

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