As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”
Matthew 3:16-17
Baptism is one of two sacraments that are practiced in the United Methodist Church. Since many denominations practice the sacraments differently, we describe below the theology and practice of baptism at Peace.

What is the significance of baptism?

Baptism signifies an individuals entry into the Church. In baptism, we are initiated into the community of Gods covenant people the body of Christ. Baptism is the sign of the New Covenant, the divine promise applied to the life of each of us. It is through water and the Spirit that we enter into new spiritual life in relationship to God in Christ.

Why do United Methodists baptize children?

In The Articles of Religion, John Wesley asserted that, Baptism is not only a sign of profession and mark of difference whereby Christians are distinguished from others that are not baptized; but it is also a sign of regeneration or the new birth. The baptism of young children is to be retained in the church. Baptism of an infant powerfully portrays the utter dependence which all of us have on God. The sacrament is the sign of Gods promise of ongoing grace, offering continual forgiveness and transformation throughout our lives. We do not receive all of the benefits of baptism at once; this is particularly obvious when infants are baptized. At whatever age it is received, baptism demonstrates our inclusion in the covenant with God and our access to the divine grace that claims, sustains, and saves us.

Can I be baptized as an adult?

Without God having acted first, we would be unable to move toward God. The good news is that in Jesus Christ, God has acted to make salvation possible. What God offers us must be accepted in repentance and faith. Confirmation and reaffirmation are our responses of commitment, profession of faith, and rededication.

What is the baptism service like?

If you would like to have your child baptized, or be baptized yourself, you will first meet with the pastor to discuss the sacrament of baptism. During one of our services you will be asked to come forward. You will be asked to respond to some simple questions on behalf of your child. Then the pastor will dip her hand into the baptismal font and place her hand on the head of the person being baptized. In the United Methodist church we do not typically baptize using immersion or pouring (although those options are available).

If you are considering baptism for yourself or your child, please contact the church office using the Contact menu above to schedule a time to talk with the pastor about the sacrament and your journey of faith.