Perspectives on Baptism

Post Author: Joy Caires

This month we feature two pieces on baptism from two of our young clergy women. They convey very different, yet equally striking, aspects of the sacrament, as you will see.


Photo contributed by Sunny B. Ridings, who writes:

“The blessings of doing ministry in rural Tennessee are abundant. One of the richest blessings for me is getting to baptize the young people I work with as Associate Minister. The lake is a meaningful spot for those in our congregation, so these three church friends decided to be baptized in the lake. I love the look on the girl’s face who has just come up out of the water, with her two wet friends behind her. I can just imagine God saying, “These are my children, with whom I am well pleased.”


A Poem For M’s Baptism Day

Her head is bundled with gauze.

Her round eyes are unblinking in her mother’s arms.

New to the world, she and her twin

(a fat and happy little creature)

Are shepherded into the light.

Her heart beats,

Her ribs contract as she breathes.

Pressed to her mother’s cheek

She is silent.

I drip sterile water into a small shell,

My hands shake.

The surgeon is silent as she sews.

The smallest of droplets upon her cheek

The Trinity…we pray.
I anoint her with oil.

Welcome to the household of God.

Joy Caires is an Episcopal Priest serving as a pediatric hospital chaplain.

Image by: Sunny Ridings
Used with permission