Friday, January 24, 2014

A Cuban Baptism

Some important history about the baptisms with the Episcopal Church in Cárdenas is that recently, with the arrival of Aurelio (my host father), he has been stricter with the requirements needed for someone to be baptized. Before the Episcopal Church was the place that people could go to to be baptized “easily.” Now he requires people to attend the Alpha Course, which is a basic course in Christianity, as well as an introduction to the Episcopal Church and its traditions. Another way people can be baptized is to attend church regularly and attend the Bible studies that are held every Monday. The reason for this is to show and teach about why it is important to be baptized. Recently, a few weeks ago, we baptized two people. The community and people being baptized really understood what the whole event was about. At first the community did not accept this “strict” practice, but now people are starting to understand why it is important to teach before baptism. The following pictures are from the ceremony that was held a few weeks ago -- my first baptism in Cuba. 
Aurelio pouring the holy water into the font
Gospel procession
The godparents and the candidates for baptism 

Presenting a candle to the newly baptized, representing
the light of Christ
The passing of the Peace normally lasts about 10-15 minutes 
Aurelio celebrating the Eucharist

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