Monday, March 5, 2012

Raphael, Receive the light of Christ!

"Raphael and Tobias" by Michael O'Brien.
 Raphael is named for the angel Raphael in the book of Tobit.

Raphael was baptized last weekend. 

I am always so profoundly humbled and moved by this ritual, every time.

It was the traditional baptism of the Latin Rite...incredibly beautiful, and almost never used anymore, although it is the universal rite of baptism in the Catholic Church.

The prayer begins outside the church (the foyer, in our case, as it was so cold and windy that day)...

Priest: Receive the Sign of the Cross both upon your forehead + and also upon your heart +; take to you the faith of the heavenly precepts; and so order your life as to be, from henceforth, the temple of God.
Priest: Accipe signum Crucis tam in fronte, quam in corde, sume fidem cælestium præceptorum: et talis esto moribus, ut templum Dei iam esse possis.

There is so much depth to the symbolism of the entire ritual: the salt (tasting the nourishment of Christ), the oil (for healing and kingly anointing) and of course the water (for spiritual cleansing and rebirth).

Priest: Raphael, ego te baptizo in nomine + Patris, et Filii, +, et Spiritus + Sancti.

Raphael, my beautiful, innocent baby, right now you don't know about the ugliness of sin. Your heart is wide open and beautiful. But as you get older, you'll realize how much we need the mercy of God! May the grace of your baptism flow like a river in your heart, from the endless source that is the in-dwelling Trinity, the fountain of everlasting life.

I feel a little...shy...sharing baptism pictures here, but don't think you can get away without seeing sewing pictures! I made Rafe a little gown....out of a table cloth...and it's definitely exciting. Silk,  old. (More of that to come.)


  1. I am not Catholic, but Baptist. However I can certainly appreciate the beauty of such words and ritual. I am sure it was a very moving and symbolic day for you family. I love the name Raphael, My little boy is almost 11 months and his name is Leonardo (my oldest is Roman). I came accross your blog from the google "Blogs of Note" and so glad I checked it out. It is beautiful and a good description of family life! Best wishes with homeschooling, something I have always dreamed of, but my Husband is not on board with the idea. Roman starts school next year and will hopefully be in the local village school, rather then the large state school in town. I can't wait to see the pictures of Raphael's gown, babies always look so amazing in the beautiful gowns. :)

    1. Thanks for the note, mamashara! Home-schooling feels "right" for us, but I couldn't do it without my husband's support. But there are so many other ways to integrate learning into daily life, even if they go to a classroom during the day. I'll bet you have great opportunities for nature study, over in Australia! Nature walks is one of my favourite ways to get my kids learning.

  2. I just found your blog today and I liked it. I enjoyed this post. I am interested in homeschooling like you. But I am kind of doing something different, I am homeschooling myself as an adult so far I like it alot. I have a blog about what I am doing if you would like to check it out I think you might like it. Thanks and congratulations on the Baptism of your child, it sounds very moving.

  3. My goodness, what a beautiful painting and post! Blessings to you and Raphael. The Rite of Baptism is written in such beautiful language, and awes me every time I hear it.

  4. I really appreciated this post. I am finishing up this semester and then I will have one to go. It is awful because I see so many students here who are just lost. I believe that goes to show that a lot of parents aren't raising their children to know and love Christ. Baptism is such a wonderful and beautiful thing. We need more parents like you out there who care enough about their family to raise them in such a joyous environment.