Baptism and Infant Dedication
In the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)—the denomination to which North Eaton Christian Church belongs—baptism is a decision to be made by individuals, for themselves. Adults and children as young as grade 5 are offered the opportunity to attend a 6-week educational series that touches on issues of faith and the sacraments of baptism and communion as they pertain to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).
If you’ve never been baptized, the pastor will work with you to set a date for that sacramental act. (NECC’s baptisms are a full-body immersion experience usually done during a worship service. The baptismal candidate is asked to wear a swimsuit or other modest attire under a white robe which we will provide. Immediately upon being baptized and before leaving the baptistry, the newly-baptized member of the global Christian community receives the sacrament of communion as a sign of their new life in Christ.)
If you were baptized as an infant or at any other time in your life (whether by full immersion or “sprinkling”, with the sign of the cross being made on your forehead with water), you do not need to be baptized again; your baptism, even if performed by a different faith community, remains valid.
Disciples do not baptize infants or young children. Rather, babies and children through grade 4 may be dedicated by their parents/caregivers. This spiritual ceremony involves the adult caregivers and the child’s family support group bringing the child forward during a worship service, pre-arranged with the pastor, to be prayed over by the pastor and the congregation as they pledge their support in the child’s spiritual care and in the family’s own Christian development. In turn, the parents/caregivers and supportive family pledge to raise the child to learn about the love of God which has been demonstrated through the life of Jesus, through association with and participation in the spiritual and educational practices of this Christian community. Once the child enters the 5th grade, they will have the opportunity to take a 6-week Pastor’s (membership) Class to make a decision as to their own baptism.