We become members of Christ and the Church through the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Confirmation, and the Eucharist.
Each year during the Easter Vigil, the water that will be used in baptism is blessed.
Knowing that Baptism is necessary for salvation, parents have their child baptized. Baptism signifies the child’s entrance into the Church. The community of believers and the parents make a commitment to care for and teach this child as he or she is raised in the Catholic faith.
In the celebration of Baptism, water is poured over the child’s head. This action is a symbol of dying to sin and rising to new life in Christ. The celebrant proclaims “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
The child being baptized is anointed with two oils; the oil of catechumens is put on the chest, and chrism is put on the top of the head. Oil is a symbol of strength and healing.
A candle is lit during the celebration. This shows that the child baptized is asked to keep the flame of faith alive in his or her heart.
Through Baptism a child receives forgiveness of original sin as well as personal sins. The newly baptized child receives sanctifying grace and is sealed with a permanent spiritual mark. This is why Baptism can be celebrated only once.