On March 19, we welcomed Adley Grace into the family of God through the waters of baptism. Here is our family of five prior to the worship service.
Adley's baptismal dress was so beautiful! We had registered for the dress and were honored to receive it from one of Jason's co-workers at a baby shower. The bonnet that Adley wore is a special keepsake that can be taken apart and used as a hankie for Adley's wedding someday. I had one just like it for my baptismal bonnet that I later wrapped around my bridal bouquet at my wedding. I love the symbolism that this bonnet shows of God's presence with our little girl throughout her entire life.
The actual baptism was fairly early in the service. As we were getting set in our positions near the baptismal font, the church showed a brief slideshow of pictures of Adley and our family.
Pastor Dommer officiated the baptism while Adley's sponsors-- Tyler, Jennifer and Jonathan (with Aliya)-- stood close by. What a blessing it was to have these dear friends with us on this day!
Our church allows the baby's father to perform the actual baptism, if he so desires. We were so pleased that Jason had the opportunity to baptize Adley, especially since Jason is now officially on his way to becoming a pastor. What a special memory this was!
Adley didn't cry at all! After the rite of baptism, Pastor Dommer marked our little sweetie with the sign of the cross on her forehead and on her heart "to mark her as one redeemed by Christ the crucified."
I know this looks like just one more picture of the same thing, but I had to capture the moment so that we'd remember it... Do you notice everyone smiling as if we're laughing in this picture? Well, right when Pastor Dommer began the prayer for Adley, our little girl decided to let loose with all kinds of loud gaseous noises. Perfect timing, little one! :)
Later in the service, we had a special prayer time for Adley. Our church has the practice of inviting those in need of prayer up to the rail and allowing friends and family to lay hands on them and surround them with love and prayer. It's not a very typical Lutheran practice, but we have come to really appreciate this way of showing Christian care and support. Adley was certainly surrounded by many loved ones that morning! Unfortunately, Adley responded to all the prayers with loud screams. Perhaps this was her special way of thanking everyone for their presence that day. :)
Following the service, we took all the obligatory combinations of family photos. Jason and I got a kick out of this first shot of our family. Cody's random hand-on-his-hip pose and Jaden's upset, pouty expression are both quite typical in our household these days!
Still not the best shot of our family but slightly better than the first one! :)
with Adley's sponsors:
with both sets of Adley's grandparents:
The Schleicher side
The Walquist side
And finally, the whole crew:
How awesome is it that ALL members from both sides of our family, plus a few other relatives and friends, were able to join us for this special occasion? We were so humbled by everyone's presence that day!
We thank God for His amazing gift of baptism and for the forgiveness and life eternal that we as His children receive through Jesus. We know that God loves our dear Adley much more than we ever could!
"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!" I John 3:1