Wednesday, June 10, 2015

In Six Short Years, Cue The Tears

There are a few life stages that our church celebrates with our children and youth. After baby dedication, the next big stage is entering Grade 1 where each child gets a new book dedicated to them in our church library, and these are presented to them during a worship service. Sam will get his in September but thankfully this transition isn't very emotional. Nor do the parents have to say anything!

Then comes turning twelve where each kid gets a Bible. The Bibles are made available so that  everybody in our congregation has the chance to highlight a verse which is meaningful to them to share with the kids. The parents and the kids then come forward during the worship service, the Bibles are presented, and the parents get to share a verse which they are praying for their child. This one usually makes me cry, especially if I know the kids well and six years seems like too short a time to prepare for this transition with Sam. Yikes.

At age eighteen each young adult is presented with a mug, again the parents get to share a verse or a prayer for their son or daughter, and we hear from the youth about what their plans are post-high school.

And baptism happens whenever people feel ready for it, although quite a few do get baptized around age 18. However, I have seen teens as young as fourteen be baptized (it's rare though) and I was 25 when I was baptized.
Elizabeth with Rachel in October 2011 and us on Sunday
This past Sunday was a big one at church since it was the Turning 18 rite of passage and baptisms. And seven young adults from our church were baptized, including Elizabeth who I started nannying for when she was 18 months old. We go back a long ways, Liz and I.
Isaac with Sam (and a younger brother) in June 2009 and 
Isaac and his siblings with Sam in October 2010.

Isaac was also baptized. He's another kid I did some nannying for. And when I've taken care of your children they become "mine!" So it was very emotional to see a couple of my kids be baptized (I cried all the way through Elizabeth's), and to hear their plans for past Grade 12 in the Turning 18 rite of passage. Weren't they six like five minutes ago?!?!?

I love seeing kids in our church grow up and then become baptized. They are choosing not only to become members of Christ's family but also members of our church. I feel like it affirms that we, as a church, are doing something right when these kids willingly join with us.

It makes me cry because I hope our kids feel the same love and community from our church that these kids do. It makes me cry because I know how much our church community loves my kids. I look forward to celebrating these transitions with Sam and Rachel, although I've already warned Dave that he's the one who's going to have to do the talking since I will likely be crying too hard. I should remind him now that he's also going to have to be in charge of bringing Kleenex for me since I always forget :)


  1. What a special time! I would be crying too. I teared up during my niece's graduation. I can't imagine how it will be when it's my own children, so I understand how you feel.

  2. Wow! What an interesting baptism tradition. Thank you for sharing it!

  3. I love your church's traditions. I want to find a good church where we feel this kind of connection before we dedicate Mattox. And I always prayed when we were needing nannies that God would bless us with one who would love and appreciate our kids like their own. Sadly, I never found that. I guess I just needed someone like you. ;-)


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