In holy baptism the triune God delivers us from the forces of evil, puts our sinful self to death, gives us new birth, adopts us as children, and makes us members of the body of Christ, the church.
The Christian community at worship celebrates God's gift of baptism in a number of ways. The sacrament itself normally takes place in the midst of the worshiping assembly as a sign that in baptism we are made one with Christ and with the whole people of God On behalf of the whole church, we promise support to new sisters and brothers, confess the faith with them, and welcome them into the body of Christ. Water connected to the Word-God's saving promise in Jesus Christ--is at the center of the baptismal celebration.
Although a person is baptized once, the gift of baptism continues throughout a Christian's life. Instruction in the faith for a life of discipleship is part of the preparation of those who are to be baptized or their parents and sponsors. The ongoing nurture of that faith is part of the congregation's ministries of formation, education, service, and evangelical witness. The additional orders in this section -Welcome to Baptism, Affirmation of Baptism, and Confession and Forgiveness--provide several ways by which God's people in worship may participate in the lifelong gift of baptism. (Evangelical Lutheran Worship, p. 225)
God, whose grace is for all, is the one who acts in Baptism . Therefore, candidates for Baptism are of all ages . Some are adults and older childrenwho have heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ, declare their faith, and desire Holy Baptism . Others are the young or infant children of active members of the congregation or those children for whom members of the congregation assume sponsorship.
Baptism includes instruction and nurture in the faith for a life of discipleship. When infants and young children are baptized, the parents and sponsors receive instruction and the children are taught throughout their development . With adults and older children, the baptismal candidates themselves are given instruction and formation for faith and ministry in the world both prior to and following their baptism . The instruction and formation of sponsors, parents, and candidates prior to Baptism deals especially with faith in the triune God and with prayer. (ELCA Use of the Means of Grace)
Those who desire baptism for themselves or their children are invited to contact Pastor Jim for prayer and instruction prior to baptism..