Since 1988, there have been more than 160,000 baptisms of people age 16 and older in the ELCA.
That’s an average of over 7,500 per year. Plus, over 1.2 million people have been received into congregations by “Affirmation of Baptism” — affirmation of the baptized life.
Our culture increasingly has more in common with the time of the early church, when Christianity was not central to communities.
Families do not automatically baptize children, Sunday is no longer reserved for religious observations, and more and more people indicate that they are not affiliated with the Christian church.
The whole Christian community has the privilege and responsibility to celebrate and support God’s gift of baptism in a number of ways.
The congregation’s ministries — which support the formation, education, service and evangelical witness of the faithful — deepen and enliven the community’s participation in God’s mission in Jesus Christ for the sake of the world.
One process, widely called the catechumenate, is based on ancient practices of forming disciples and preparing adults for baptism over several months.
Catechumenal origins are found in the second century, when the vast majority of Christians were “made and not born” (as Tertullian, the early church father, said).
Find more information about the catechumenate today and participate in the conversation.