Baptism has long been called the gateway to the sacraments. In the gospels, we read about how Jesus Christ himself was baptized (for example, see Mt 3:13-17). The disciples of Jesus also baptized others. Ananias baptized Paul (Acts 9:18), and Paul baptized the "household of Stephanas" (1 Cor 1:16). In Matthew's gospel we learn that Jesus commissioned his disciples to baptize: "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 you" (28:19). Last, in Mark's gospel, we are reminded that "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved" (16:16).
We say that Baptism is the gateway to the sacraments because it is the first of the three sacraments of Christian initiation. Baptism cleanses us of original sin, incorporates us into Christ and his Church, and bestows upon us the gift of the Holy Spirit. In virtue of Baptism, we are made members of the divine family as sons and daughters of God. Such a wondrous reality is made possible by the saving death of Jesus Christ.
For information on baptism for ages 6 and under, contact Carmen Fuller.
For information on baptism for ages 7 and up, contact Carmen Fuller.