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January 8


The Baptism of the Lord



"The origin and foundation of Christian Baptism is Jesus. Before starting his public ministry, Jesus submitted himself to the baptism given by John the Baptist. "The waters did not purify him; he cleansed the waters"The waters did not purify him; he cleansed the waters. . . Jesus did not need to be baptized because he was totally faithful to the will of his Father and free from sin. However, he wanted to show his solidarity with human beings in order to reconcile them to the Father. By commanding his disciples to baptize all nations, he established the means by which people would die to sin—Original and actual—and begin to live a new life with God."

"In Baptism, the Holy Spirit moves us to answer Christ's call to holiness. In Baptism, we are asked to walk by the light of Christ and to trust in his wisdom. We are invited to submit our hearts to Christ with ever deeper love." 

—United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, pp. 184 and 196


"In the one Body of Christ, all the members share 'a common dignity' so that 'no inequality arising from race or nationality, social condition or sex' exists, for all are one in Christ (Lumen Gentium [Dogmatic Constitution on the Church], no. 32)."

—Sacraments and Social Mission, "Baptism," p. 3


Pray in thanksgiving for a child in your family today.


"After being baptized, we acknowledge or receive a white garment to signify that we have risen with Christ. We receive a lighted candle, which symbolizes that we are a new creation, enlightened by Christ. We are now called to carry that light into the dark world to extend the light to others (CCC, no. 1243). The gifts given at Baptism, Pope Benedict XVI writes, are for 'the building up of Christ's Body (1 Cor 12) and for ever greater witness to the Gospel in the world' (Sacramentum Caritatis, no. 17)."

—Sacraments and Social Mission, "Baptism," p. 4

At the start of this year, think about ways that you can bring more of Christ's light to the world.

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