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Do You Reject Satan and All His Empty Promises?

Do You Reject Satan and All His Empty Promises?

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On this day four years ago we brought Isabella to Immaculate Conception Church in Salem, MA and asked that she be baptized. I believe it was Trinity Sunday, which is why Father Murphy is wearing gold vestments. (A nice feast to be baptized on, I did think!)

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This morning I brought Isabella, Sophia, and Benedict to Mass with me. (We arrived a little late, during the responsorial psalm.) They all behaved beautifully

Today was the Fest of the Sacred Heart. The readings focused on Jesus as the Good Shepherd. By coincidence I’d brought a board book for Ben about the Good Shepherd. He shrieked at it all through Mass.

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After Mass we asked Father R to give Isabella a special blessing. It was at her request; but she clammed up and refused to say anything to him. Still, he’s so wonderful with kids. He knelt down to be at her level and he said a beautiful prayer for her. She was glowing, even if too shy to speak.

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We came home and made chocolate chip cookies. Mmmm….. The girls helped lick beaters and bowls and ate some chocolate chips. Of course.

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After dinner we lit Isabella’s baptismal candle and renewed our baptismal promises. It was so sweet hearing Bella and Sophie add their voices to the chorus of “I do”.

I got the idea from Mike Aquilina. I’ve been reading Love in the Little Things: Tales of Family Life.

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The day before yesterday, the chapter I read was about his family’s celebration of baptismal days and he mentioned that in addition to lighting their baptismal candles, they renew their promises. I thought it would make a lovely addition to our family’s ritual. It did.

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We didn’t, however, follow his other advice to read Scripture passages relating to baptism. Maybe next year when the girls are a bit older.

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We sang an Alleluia and then, at Bella’s request, the first verse of Amazing Grace.

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Then we ate our chocolate chip cookies made into ice cream sandwiches.

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They were messy but very good. Sophie got a bit distressed by the drips.

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Then we gave Bella a couple of presents: a coloring book of the life of St Francis and a little Holy Spirit medallion.

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Bella put on the necklace at once and then began to color.

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It didn’t take much preparation or planning to create a meaningful ritual in our domestic church. I hope and pray that this tradition will help create good memories and strengthen my children for the battles they will face, help them learn to cling to their baptismal promises in all of life’s tough situations.

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4 comments
  • My little sister/goddaughter is still on the trailing edge of the curve after being seriously speech-delayed when we got her (19 months and she knew 2 or 3 words), but she was perfectly capable of and willing to renew her baptismal promises at Easter, with a little prompting from me. Does she understand what she’s saying? Probably not. But she’ll grow into the understanding.

    I will have to remember to be godmotherly and suggest something for her baptismal anniversary, which is (for better or worse), two days after Christmas.

  • I forgot to mention that said little sister was 3 1/2 at Easter. So I was agreeing with you that most 3-year-olds would be able to respond for themselves, with a little help.

  • Hey, my baptismal anniversary is the day after Christmas! Which is also my little sister’s birthday and my little brother’s saint name day.

    It does complicate things a little; but we do try to keep this celebration fairly low-key. I think just the act of lighting the candle is enough to excite most three and four year-olds and make it feel special.

    I agree that she’ll grow into the understanding. The fun thing for me as a parent has been the unexpected jumps when it seems like they might “get” more than you expect.

  • I thought the whole “problem” with being two was kids’ insistence of deciding and speaking up?? So although kids wouldn’t understand everything that’s going on, or the full implications of baptism and renewal of promises, I’d expect them to be eager to respond. (Though, being two, they might come out with a big NO!)

    When you’re three, you’re practically ready to go to school, so far as oral language skills go (absent any speech therapy type problems). Fairly often, kids are reading by then also. (Everything else, not so much.) Of course, that was when my shyness really kicked in, so it’s iffy what will happen when the family spotlight turns on the kid; and comprehension is still iffy, which is why seven is the age of reason. smile

    I do clearly remember the excitement of candles as a three year old, because I burned my chin on my 3rd birthday candle while trying to blow it out. I’d just gotten glasses at 2 1/2 after being hugely nearsighted forever, and my spatial comprehension and coordination beyond my nose was very iffy. smile

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