Baptized to What?

Happy Baptism of the Lord and Epiphany Sunday!  

That’s right, this week we have a two-fer!  Epiphany Day was Thursday, January 6th, and so it’s customary to celebrate it on the closest Sunday, but since January 6th doesn’t fall on a Sunday, we’re also celebrating Jesus’s baptism, which is supposed to be celebrated the first Sunday after the Epiphany.  Who made up this complicated system?  I blame Pope Gregory, personally.  Yes, we could always break from tradition, but the two things actually go together quite nicely, because they’re both Epiphanies – appearances of God on the scene and surprising everyone.  Epiphanies are eureka moments, and both the visit of the Magi and the Baptism of Jesus represent God showing up in big ways.  I’d also present to you that the same happens in our baptisms.  They are also Epiphanies, moments when God manifests personally to us in often surprising ways.   

We think of our baptisms as being for or with, but do we think about what we are baptized to?  Baptism represents the beginning of a journey of sacrificial servanthood that culminates when one passes into full fellowship with Christ in the great beyond. 

Christ lived out his baptism every day as he taught us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, care for the dying, and share the good news with a broken world. As a people who bear the name of Christian, God calls us to live out our baptisms in the same way, caring for the needy and sharing the good news. We too are baptized to a mission of welcoming and redeeming sinners.  Let’s not be baptized with the same fire and mission Jesus had and be about his work in the world. 

Sunday’s Livestream Service at 10:30—We recommend logging into your Facebook account a few minutes before 10:30 am so you can troubleshoot any issues you might have. You can access the service at stpaulsworship.org You can chat once the Livestream service has started. If you don’t have a Facebook account you can also access the Livestream at stpaulsworship.org without the chat feature. A pop-up will ask you to log in and in small letters at the bottom you can click “Not Now” and still be able to watch the service. The service will be available on YouTube either Sunday afternoon or Monday. 

Sunday’s In-Person Service at 10:30 –Our in-person, indoor worship is currently in the Sanctuary, starting at 10:30am.  Please go to our website to get the latest COVID-19 Update. There will be space for those who still wish to social distance and mask, and masks are no longer required at worship for those who are vaccinated. 

 

Our regular Children’s ministries include the nursery, SPKidz, and iClub.  They are currently meeting at 10:15 am in the Fellowship Hall.  

Our regular Youth schedule most weeks is: Praise New Generation meeting from 4:00 pm-5:00 pm every Sunday and SPYouth meeting from 5:00 pm-6:30 pm every Sunday. You can always check the calendar at childrenandyouthcalendar.org for updated info. 

We so appreciate you keeping connected with us. You may contact the church office by email at info@spocala.org or by phone at 352-694-2161 if you have any questions or need any help. We will get back to you as soon as possible.