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Author Topic: question about baptism  (Read 1028 times) Average Rating: 0
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Victoria
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« on: December 21, 2011, 03:48:59 PM »

I was wondering what is the "normal" practice for baptism in OC-my understanding is that baptism can be performed by emersion, pouring or sprinkling of the water. When I asked my priest, he adamantly declared that HE only baptizes by emersion and its the ONLY proper way(by "being dipped" three times to be exact). Does anyone know whether this is the standard practice or do some priests do baptize by pouring/sprinkling? What is the "official" practice?
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« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2011, 03:56:23 PM »

"Concerning baptism, baptise thus: Having first rehearsed all these things, 'baptise, in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,' in running water; but if thou hast no running water, baptise in other water, and if thou canst not in cold, then in warm. But if thou hast neither, pour water three times on the head 'in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit."

 -Didache 7:1-3

Many baptize via triple aspersion (sprinkling/pouring), especially with babies, in the Old World and in Greek parishes here, from what I understand. Many also consider this an aberration.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2011, 03:58:07 PM by NicholasMyra » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2011, 04:55:35 PM »

Yes, triple immersion is the Orthodox practice. I have a friend who got baptized in a Rubbermaid horse trough. Our parish's baptismal fount is outside and one year we had a baptism in January. Although the guy was Russian, so what we thought was an exceptionally cold winter day here in the South was probably a mild spring day to him.
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« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2011, 10:41:53 AM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.
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« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2011, 11:14:57 AM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Many of us over the age of 50 who were baptized in a then - Metropolia parish(now OCA) and over the age of 30 in an ACROD parish were likely baptized by means of pouring. This was a lingering result of Latin influences as well as a desire to more fully 'Americanize' the church (particularly given public health issues in the USA following the 1918 influenza pandemic (remember that hysteria was rampant and medical knowledge regarding transmittable diseases was not what it is today).

Just look at the parish records of any immigrant parish founded between 1890 and 1930 and you will be shocked at the infant mortality rates - many immigrants (including clergy) probably thought that the Old World practices contributed to that rate. Of course we now know that was in error, but one should not be overly judgmental on the subject.
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« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2011, 12:31:09 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Many of us over the age of 50 who were baptized in a then - Metropolia parish(now OCA) and over the age of 30 in an ACROD parish were likely baptized by means of pouring. This was a lingering result of Latin influences as well as a desire to more fully 'Americanize' the church (particularly given public health issues in the USA following the 1918 influenza pandemic (remember that hysteria was rampant and medical knowledge regarding transmittable diseases was not what it is today).

Just look at the parish records of any immigrant parish founded between 1890 and 1930 and you will be shocked at the infant mortality rates - many immigrants (including clergy) probably thought that the Old World practices contributed to that rate. Of course we now know that was in error, but one should not be overly judgmental on the subject.

True and understandable. I can live with the fact that we had to rid ourselves of some Latin influence or that there were health concerns in the past. While unfortunate, we can move forward...and by no means do such practices render a baptism "invalid."

I was more speaking to modern practice in parishes that have the resources to "do more" for a baptism, such as a proper triple immersion, but instead decide to execute baptism by a less-preferable means, like sprinkling or pouring. Again, it doesn't mean the baptism is "invalid" or anything, but when you can obtain the ideal...shouldn't you? That's all I'm saying.
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« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2011, 12:33:21 PM »

I was wondering what is the "normal" practice for baptism in OC-my understanding is that baptism can be performed by emersion, pouring or sprinkling of the water. When I asked my priest, he adamantly declared that HE only baptizes by emersion and its the ONLY proper way(by "being dipped" three times to be exact). Does anyone know whether this is the standard practice or do some priests do baptize by pouring/sprinkling? What is the "official" practice?

The norm is triple immersion. Anything less than this is less than desirable, but can be done according to economia. Sadly, however, we have come to re-define laziness as economia.
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« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2011, 12:34:29 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Also, the Didache, while ancient, was only recently discovered. It seems to me it's not in the corpus of holy tradition.
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« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2011, 12:42:57 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Also, the Didache, while ancient, was only recently discovered. It seems to me it's not in the corpus of holy tradition.

It seems to me that it was known earlier on. Eusebius mentions it as a possible canonical book. It is also accepted by Athanasius, Rufinus and the Apostolic Canons. Later on, John of Damascus will accept it, and I believe it is in the canon of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
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« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2011, 12:53:34 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Also, the Didache, while ancient, was only recently discovered. It seems to me it's not in the corpus of holy tradition.

It seems to me that it was known earlier on. Eusebius mentions it as a possible canonical book. It is also accepted by Athanasius, Rufinus and the Apostolic Canons. Later on, John of Damascus will accept it, and I believe it is in the canon of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.

Thanks. Didn't know that.
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« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2011, 02:10:36 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Also, the Didache, while ancient, was only recently discovered. It seems to me it's not in the corpus of holy tradition.
True, but it exists in a modified form called the Didascalia.
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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2012, 01:49:07 PM »

"And concerning baptism, baptize this way: Having first said all these things, baptize into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, in living water. But if you have no living water, baptize into other water; and if you cannot do so in cold water, do so in warm. But if you have neither, pour out water three times upon the head into the name of Father and Son and Holy Spirit. But before the baptism let the baptizer fast, and the baptized, and whoever else can; but you shall order the baptized to fast one or two days before."

I am curious, why is it that i never hear/see baptisms being done in local rivers?
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« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2012, 02:48:49 PM »

"Water", not "sewage".
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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2012, 02:49:54 PM »

"Water", not "sewage".
ok worthy of a LOL Wink laugh
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« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2012, 03:10:06 PM »


I am curious, why is it that i never hear/see baptisms being done in local rivers?

I have been told that baptisms in rivers do happen in Africa.
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« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2012, 05:44:53 PM »

"Water", not "sewage".
People used to use rivers for bathrooms, cremation ash disposal, clothes washing, etc.

In some areas, they still do.

Perhaps our rivers are clean by comparison.
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« Reply #16 on: February 12, 2012, 05:56:54 PM »

Triple immersion is the standard practice. But, as the quote from the Didache states, there are other methods available to use if such a practice is not possible at the time. Unfortunately, though, I have seen parishes that are more than capable of performing a triple immersion baptism instead pour or sprinkle their newly-illumined.

Also, the Didache, while ancient, was only recently discovered. It seems to me it's not in the corpus of holy tradition.

It seems to me that it was known earlier on. Eusebius mentions it as a possible canonical book. It is also accepted by Athanasius, Rufinus and the Apostolic Canons. Later on, John of Damascus will accept it, and I believe it is in the canon of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.

True
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