The Sacrament of Baptism incorporates us into
the Church, the Body of Christ, and is our
introduction to the life of the Holy Trinity.
Water is a natural symbol of cleansing and
newness of life. Through the three-fold immersion
in the waters of Baptism in the Name of the
Holy Trinity, one dies to the old ways of
sin and is born to a new life in Christ. Baptism
is one's public identification with Christ's
Death and victorious Resurrection. Following
the custom of the early Church, Orthodoxy
encourages the baptism of infants. The Church
believes that the Sacrament is bearing witness
to the action of God who chooses a child to
be an important member of His people. From
the day of their baptism, children are expected
to mature in the life of the Spirit, through
their family and the Church. The Baptism of
adults is practiced when there was no previous
baptism in the name of the Holy Trinity.
Sacrament of Chrismation
(Confirmation) immediately follows baptism
and is never delayed until a later age. As
the ministry of Christ was enlivened by the
Spirit, and the preaching of the Apostles
strengthened by the Spirit, so is the life
of each Orthodox Christian sanctified by the
Holy Spirit. Chrismation, which is often referred
to as one's personal Pentecost, is the Sacrament
which imparts the Spirit in a special way.
In the Sacrament of Chrismation,
the priest anoints the various parts of the
body of the newly-baptized with Holy Oil saying:
"The seal of the gifts of the Holy Spirit."
The Holy Oil, which is blessed by the bishop,
is a sign of consecration and strength. The
Sacrament emphasizes the truths that not only
is each person a valuable member of the Church,
but also each one is blessed by the Spirit
with certain gifts and talents. The anointing
also reminds us that our bodies are valuable
and are involved in the process of salvation.
The Sacraments of initiation
always are concluded with the distribution
of Holy Communion to the newly-baptized. Ideally,
this takes place within the celebration of
the Divine Liturgy. This practice reveals
that Orthodoxy views children from their infancy
as important members of the Church. There
is never time when the young are not part
of God's people.
Information Concerning Baptisms
A Parent and Nouno or Nouna must be an Orthodox
member in good standing with his or her Orthodox
Parish and must have met their financial stewardship
obligation to the parish before we will confirm
the date of the Sacrament.
A letter from your Parish
Priest is necessary confirming your membership
if you are not a member of St. Spyridon.
The Church contribution
for a Baptism is $175 for Parish members and
$275 for non-parish members. Please arrange
to make this donation when you confirm your
It is imperative that you,
your family and guests be in the Cathedral
on time for your scheduled Sacrament. There
may be more Sacraments before or after yours.
It has been a time honored
custom in our Holy Orthodox Church to offer
a gratuity, in appreciation for services rendered,
to the Clergy, Chantor and Sexton for Baptisms
and Weddings. They are all an important part
of these Sacraments and offer invaluable assistance
before, during and after the Sacrament.
It is also customary to
light a candle when entering the Cathedral.
Please invite your guests to participate in
We urge you to keep these
customs in mind when you are celebrating these
joyous occasions with your family and friends.
Begin the process by calling the Cathedral
at 508.791.7326 and confirm the availability.
The Office Staff will confer with the Clergy
and schedule your Sacrament. If you wish to
have other Clergy present at your Sacrament
this is the time to notify the Office. There
are Diocesan regulations which must be followed.
A designated Parish Council
Member will be present to assist our staff
during the procedure. They are responsible
for keeping the Cathedral open and will lock
up the Cathedral once your Sacrament is done.
Please keep their time in mind, they are volunteers
who also have their own family obligations.
If you are interested in
creating a program to distribute to your guests
explaining the service and its significance,
the Cathedral Office can provide you with
sample programs which other families have
used. Please ask for a sample to assist you
in your endeavor.
Checklist for the Date
of the Baptism
- A Gold Cross for the
- New clothes to dress
the child/adult after their Baptism
- A hand towel, bath towel,
1 white flat sheet
- A bar of soap
- A small bottle of olive
- 1 large candle with ribbon
- 2 smaller candles (for
- favors (martirika)