The Baptism of the Lord Jesus January 9, 2022
Is 42:1-4, 6-7; Ps 29: Act 10:34-38; Lk 3:15-16, 21-22

It’s dry
We need a rain…

I think I’ve been saying that all of my life
Isn’t it amazing
It can clean
You can cook with it
It’s good to drink

The water from rain
Soaks the ground
Nourishes our crops
And brings the flowers to bloom

Rain on the day of the funeral of a farmer…
Is a blessing from God

Today, we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord

“At Christmas he was born a man; today he is reborn sacramentally. Then he was born from a Virgin; today he is born in mystery.
When he was born a man, his mother Mary held him close to her heart; when he is born in mystery, God the Father embraces him with his voice when he says: This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased…” (Sermon by St. Maximus of Turbin, bishop)

“The symbolism of water signifies the Holy Spirit’s action in Baptism…” (CCC 694)
“The word baptism in its origins is Greek and means ‘immersion’ and ‘bath’. 
Immersion in water is a sign of death, and emersion out of water means new life.” (U.S. Catechism for Adults p.183)

“The origin and foundation of Christian Baptism is Jesus.” 
“Jesus’ immersion in the water is a sign for all human beings of the need to die to themselves and to do God’s will”  (U.S. Catechism for Adults p.184)

We remember our baptism during the Easter Vigil “during the blessing of the baptimsmal water” 
“In Baptism we use your gift of water
which you have made a rich symbol
of the grace you give us in this sacrament” (CCC 1217)

“At the very dawn of creation
your Spirit breathed on the waters,
making them the wellspring of all holiness” (CCC 1218)

“The waters of the great flood
you made a sign of the waters of Baptism,
that make an end of sin and a new beginning of goodness” (CCC 1219)

“You freed the children of Abraham from the slavery of Pharoh,
bringing them dry-shod through the waters of the Red Sea,
to be an image of the people set free in Baptism” (CCC 1221)

“In Baptism, the Holy Spirit moves us to answer Christ’s call to holiness.
In Baptism, we are asked to walk by the light of Christ and to trust in his wisdom.
We are invited to submit our hearts to Christ with ever deeper love.” (U.S. Catechism for Adults p.196)

When we bless ourselves with Holy Water, we remember our baptism
Our call to holiness
Our call to follow Christ

I can still remember when I was baptized
It was the summer between fourth and fifth grade
I remember thinking that I was a sinner
And the overwhelming feeling that I needed to be baptized

I remember after I was baptized
Feeling joyful and lighthearted
And then someone asked me…
Why? Why were you baptized?

I was caught off guard
I was confused
And a little embarrassed 
I didn’t know the answer

I bet I have read from over six different sources as I wrote this homily
And I am sure there are countless books written about baptism
And I don’t still don’t understand it all
And it’s hard to explain

But I believe that Baptism and the Sacraments are gifts from God
We need baptism 
We need it to come closer to God
To come closer to Jesus

Jesus has shown us the way to the Father
And his Baptism was his first act 
His first step in his public ministry
He is showing us the way
The Way to the Father…
The Way to Holiness…

About dwinger

Former farmer, now college instructor
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