Today on the Baptism of the Lord, it is an opportunity for all of us to reflect on our own baptism. It is not something which happened a long time and which “made” us Catholics. It is not just a ceremony lasting a few minutes which produces magical effects; it is the beginning of a lifelong journey. It is the beginning of a process of growing into the Body of Christ as its members.
Our baptism is essentially a community experience; it is not just a private or a family event although in the way it was “celebrated” it may have looked like that. It involves active participation in the life of the Church and not just passive membership.
Perhaps we could paraphrase the words of John F. Kennedy in his inaugural address: “Ask not what the Church can do for you but what you can do for the Church.” Ultimately what we do for the Church who consists of our sisters and brothers in Christ, we do it for the Lord.
Each one of us is called to be a living witness to the Gospel: to be the salt of the earth, a city on a hill, a lamp radiating light for all. Our baptism is a never-ending call to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Every word of Isaiah can also be applied to each one of us who has been baptized. So let us today renew our faith in and our commitment to follow Jesus. Let us re-affirm our readiness to carry on his work.
For it is a sobering fact that without our co-operation, much of God’s work will never get done.