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BAPTISM IS FOR LEARNERS

This Sunday we’re baptising Clare, Hannah and Jackie. Three women with different stories. Clare is a law student. Hannah a professional on maternity leave. Jackie is retired.

Baptism is for learners.

Baptism isn’t something to enter into lightly – it should be thoughfully considered.  Hannah says “I’ve been putting this off for years. I know this is what Jesus is asking of me. I could’ve done this years ago.”

For Jackie baptism is about saying “I used to think Jesus was about strict rules and I wasn’t really interested. Now though, thanks to my daughter inviting me to Grace Church a couple of years ago, I’ve accepted Jesus into my life and I want to follow him.”

Or, take the story of an Ethiopian politican for example, recorded in Luke’s history of the early church. Travelling with him, Philip carefully explains the story of Jesus to this official and on the first sight of water he says: “What can prevent me from being baptised?” The answer is nothing can.

Baptism is for the journey.

In baptism Jesus stakes his claim upon those who go into the water. So we baptise them ‘in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit’. Named and claimed by Jesus as his.

Those who are baptised can “use” their baptism to comfort, encourage and strengthen their faith – as they face doubts and struggles they can say: “But, I am baptised. Jesus is mine and I am his.”

Baptism is beginning again.

In preparation for their baptism, Clare, Hannah and Jackie have considered what the Christian faith is about, what baptism means and discussed their questions together.  

Each of them has their own story with its ups and downs, each is now saying – “I belong in Jesus’ family and I want to respond to him.” As they emerge from the water that’s the story they’ll be starting again, on a lifelong journey following Jesus.

Join us as we celebrate with these three women from 10.00am-Midday on Sunday 17th May at The Maynard School.

And if you follow Jesus but haven’t yet taken this step we’ll be starting Baptism Classes again soon. Contact dave@gracechurchexeter.org to express your interest.

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