Baptism: A Welcome into the Family
Baptism is a sacrament of Christian initiation, in which the congregation of the church welcomes a person into membership in its family. Baptism is not a ministry the church offers to the community at large, but a point of entry, a 'rite of passage,' an essential part of the life of the congregation. All who are baptized, whether infant, child, or adult, are entered on the roll of Baptized Members of Bad Axe First United Methodist Church.
Baptism will be a part of the regular services of worship of the gathered congregation of Bad Axe First United Methodist Church, except in highly unusual circumstances -- as when the one to be Baptized is hospitalized or incapacitated, too ill or infirm to come to worship; in such cases, representatives of the congregation should be present to affirm its participation in the Baptismal covenant. The Book of Acts states that when baptism occurred in the early church, it was the whole household, not just adults, that came forward to join the Church of Jesus Christ.
Who may be Baptized?
In the United Methodist Church, Baptism is available for people of all ages: adults and youth, children and infants.
Adults and youth
Baptism is available for those adults, youth, and older children who accept for themselves the Christian faith, and the responsibilities of membership in a congregation of the church. Such persons are entered in the roll of Professing Members of Bad Axe First United Methodist Church. Of course, children can wait until they are of age to answer for themselves.
Children and infants
Baptism is available for younger children and infants, if the parents and other sponsors ('God-parents') are Christians and active participants in a Christian congregation, and if they are willing to promise to raise the child in the extended family of the church and in an environment of Christian faith and love. We expect the child's parents and other sponsors to encourage their involvement in the church's Sunday School and Christian Education programs, and we expect that the Baptized will be given the opportunity as youth to accept for themselves in Confirmation the vows of Christian faithfulness which the parents and sponsors made on their behalf at their Baptism.
What do we require of Candidates, Parents and Sponsors?
Before Baptism, the pastor will meet with the candidate, or with the candidate's parents and/or sponsors, to be satisfied concerning their growing Christian faith and their commitment toward the candidate's involvement in the church.
Baptism in the Bad Axe First United Methodist Church family may be performed by sprinkling or by immersion, as desired by the candidate. Since we have no facilities for immersion at Bad Axe First United Methodist, we would need to 'gather at the river,' or borrow the use of another congregation's Baptistery.
Will we re-Baptize?
There is no need for anyone to be reBaptized. If a person wants to mark a renewal of faith and commitment in public worship, we can hold a service of Renewal of Baptismal Vows. We do not Baptize a person who is already Baptized. To Baptize again would imply that God's grace was deficient in the person's Baptism. Once is enough.
We honor Baptism from other Christian denominations, in cases of persons who wish to join the church family of the Bad Axe First United Methodist Church.
Baptism can be scheduled with the Church Office
1-(989) 269-7671 (Ext. 102)