One might ask why Jesus needed to be baptized. Indeed, that was a question posed by John the Baptist in some of the gospels. He certainly didn’t need to be washed free of sin. So there must be another reason. Jesus’ baptism marks the beginning of his public life. He
left the shelter and safety of his home with Mary and Joseph in Nazareth and set out on his
mission as God’s “beloved Son” who could restore the world’s relationship with God. In his baptism he was anointed by the Spirit, preparing him for his God-given mission. This public and communal event helped to establish that God is with him in this ministry—it is God active in the lives of the people at that moment in time through Jesus Christ.
Like Jesus, we too are baptized by water and the Spirit. We become God’s sons and daughters. So today’s celebration isn’t just about remembering the baptism of Jesus, but it is very much about recommitting to our own baptism. “Baptism isn’t so much what is done to us as what we do because of our new relationship with God and each other.”
(Living Liturgy: Spirituality, Celebration, and Catechesis).
Last Sunday we celebrated Epiphany—the many ways God surprises us and is revealed to us all even today. The baptism of Jesus was one of these epiphanies. Our task as we leave the Christmas Season and re-enter Ordinary Time is to continually look for these surprises
from God in our daily lives. Remembering that baptism is not just a ritual that takes a few moments, but is a daily immersion in the mission of Jesus will help us to watch for God.
When are you called to heal a broken relationship or care for someone who is ill? How can you speak the words of God in forgiveness, love, and challenge to others? How will your presence at weddings, funerals, family dinners, and with friends be an opportunity for others to catch a glimpse of God? How might you feed the hungry?
Think big but remember the wisdom of Mother Teresa “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” And so we can be the vehicles for
the epiphanies of God in 2015!
Linda Arnold, Faith Formation Coordinator
He Would Love First!
October 24, 2020
A July Faith Formation Series – Part IV – APOSTOLIC