Saturday, August 2, 2008

Baptismal Reflection

Whenever we celebrate baptisms during Sunday Eucharist, we are invited not only to actively participate in the liturgy but also to reflect on our own baptism. Couple of weeks ago when we celebrated baptisms at this mass, I talked about the seed of faith that is planted in us at baptism. Today I would like to present to you some aspects of Saint Paul’s theology of baptism --- because this year is dedicated to Saint Paul it would be good to reflect on his beautiful and rich thoughts.

Saint Paul in his Letter to the Romans developed a wonderful theology of baptism. When we are baptized, says St. Paul, we die to sin and put on Jesus Christ. Something radical happens in us. From that moment it is not us who live but Christ lives in us. In baptism our identity is changed, so to speak. How does this happen?

Saint Paul says that we are buried with Christ through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in the newness of life. Keep in mind this life and death dynamic because it is the only way we can understand baptism in the Catholic tradition. In the sacrament of baptism we died to sin and became new creation of God, namely, we became Children of God --- and this is who we are – children of God. We are called to live in the newness of life as Children of God free from sin always keeping the light of grace burning brightly.

This grace of Divine Adoption has been offered us in this sacrament but it is up to us how we are going to utilize it and use it in our daily life. One thing is for sure --- we have received that treasure not to bury it but to share it with others. Jesus Christ wants to be alive in our lives and then he wants to shine through us, his children. We must strive to live as children of God.

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