Christ’s Own Forever – Eliza Ann Heinlein

At the 3rd-5th grades Easter Eucharist, it was our honor and delight to baptize Eliza Ann Heinlein, daughter of our art teacher Kristen Heinlein and her husband, an EDS basketball coach, Andy Heinlein. The Heinlein’s consider EDS to be their spiritual home, and so it was most appropriate to welcome Eliza into the Christian faith in school worship, and Easter is the ideal season for baptism since its promise and hope are at the very heart of the promises made. For Kristen and Andy, Eliza’s baptism was another sacred moment in the Church of the Good Shepherd, the place where they were married in 2013. This was our first baptism in EDS worship, so students and teachers alike were awestruck by the beauty and wonder of the sacrament, and they answered with joy and purpose the question, “Will you who witness these vows do all in your power to support this person in her life in Christ?” We also had the opportunity to renew our own baptismal vows, recalling what it means to be a Child of God who “proclaims by word and example the good news of God in Christ” and “respects the dignity of every human being.” After baptizing Eliza with water in the Name of the Trinity, and anointing her with chrism as “Christ’s own forever,” we offered this prayer: “Heavenly Father, we thank you that by water and the Holy Spirit you have bestowed upon this your servant the forgiveness of sin, and have raised her to the new life of grace. Sustain her, O Lord, in your Holy Spirit. Give her an inquiring and discerning heart, the courage to will and to persevere, a spirit to know and to love you, and the gift of joy and wonder in all your works. Amen.”

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