Baptism
 
St. John’s  Reformed Church baptizes two groups of people.
  • The first group consists of men, women, and children who demonstrate a genuine faith in Jesus Christ, renounce their sinful brokenness and desire to join the church family and have not been baptized (i.e., “believer’s baptism”).
  • The second group consists of the infants and children of St. John’s Church Reformed church members. This practice is commonly referred to as  infant baptism, and celebrates the entrance of a new-born child of Christian parents into the Covenant Community of God’s people. Those baptized as infants are not “saved” by this baptism, however. Infant baptism recognizes and celebrates the blessings and benefits of being born into Christ’s Church but it must still lead one day to a personal and public profession of faith in Jesus alone for salvation.
  
 

The sacrament of baptism reminds and assures us that “as surely as water washes away dirt from the body, so certainly [Christ’s] blood and his Spirit wash away . . . all [our] sins” (Heidelberg Catechism, Q. and A. 69). And because “infants as well as adults are in God’s covenant and are his people,” they, “no less than adults, are promised the forgiveness of sin” and thus “by baptism . . . should be received into the Christian church. . . . This was done in the Old Testament by circumcision, which was replaced in the New Testament by baptism” (Heidelberg Catechism, Q. and A. 74).

 

At St. John’s Reformed Church, baptism is performed by an ordained minister. The usual method of baptism is by the sprinkling of water on the forehead of the person to be baptized, but other methods (such as immersion) may also be used.