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Baptismal promises are only the beginning of life as a Catholic. These promises are made to God and to the child itself. We are witnessing the spiritual sunrise for the young spirit placed in my arms. I will kiss them gently and welcome them.

I will always tell people that I enjoy baptisms far more than marriage ceremonies. While the love between two people can burn brightly and beautifully. truly. The softest light we pass onto our children at baptism is the basis for our understanding of love throughout our entire life.

Sin is humankind’s estrangement and alienation from God. But the youngest babe knows nothing of this. They know nothing of the struggles about to be present in their path for decades to come.

Every time I anoint a fussing newborn I am reminded of Thomas Merton: "I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone. Amen."