Benedict XVI Calls Baptism Stupendous

Says It Can Make Life a “Continual Grace”

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VATICAN CITY, JAN. 11, 2009 ( Baptism, says Benedict XVI, is a “stupendous thing,” and it can make of our lives a continual grace.

The Pope said this today when he reflected on the sacrament during his address before praying the midday Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

He noted that the baptism of the Lord is celebrated today. “[Christ’s baptism] was the first act of his public life and all four Gospels give an account of it. […] In these words: ‘You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased,’ the nature of eternal life is revealed: It is the filial relationship with God, as Jesus lived, revealed, and gave it to us,” the Holy Father explained.

Recalling that earlier today he administered baptism to 13 newborns, the Pontiff affirmed: “This is a stupendous thing: Through baptism the human person is brought into Jesus’ unique and singular relationship with the Father, in such a way that the words that are spoken from heaven about the only-begotten Son become true for every man and woman who is reborn from the water of the Holy Spirit: You are my sons and daughters, my beloved.”

“Dear friends,” he continued, “how great is the gift of baptism! If we make ourselves fully aware of it, our life will become a continual ‘grace.’

“What a joy for Christian parents, who have seen a new creature blossom from their love, who have brought this child to the baptismal font and seen the child be reborn in the womb of the Church, for a life that will never end! Gift, joy, but also responsibility!”

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