In Jesus Christ, and through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit, God calls people to faith and into the body of Christ. Baptism is the visible sign of that call and the active presence of the Holy Spirit in a human life. Baptism is thus an public acknowledgement and an outward response to what God is doing in the hearts and souls of His Children.
In Baptism, we participate in Jesus’ death and resurrection. In Baptism, we die to what separates us from God and are raised to newness of life in Christ. Baptism points us back to the grace of God expressed in Jesus Christ, who died for us and who was raised for us. Baptism points us forward to that same Christ who will fulfill God’s purpose in God’s promised future.
Baptism is received only once. The efficacy of Baptism is not tied to the moment when it is administered, for Baptism signifies the beginning of life in Christ, not its completion. God’s grace works steadily, calling to repentance and newness of life.
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) recognizes all Baptisms with water in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit administered by other Christian churches
Both believers and their children are included in God’s covenant love. Baptism, whether administered to those who profess their faith or to those presented for Baptism as children, is one and the same Sacrament.
The Baptism of children witnesses to the truth that God’s love claims people before they are able to respond in faith. The baptized child enters the body of Christ whose members take on the responsibility of teaching and demonstrating the love of God in Christ Jesus.
If you feel that God has called you and the Holy Spirit is leading you to respond to His work in you through the Sacrament of Baptism, or if you are a baptized believer in Jesus Christ our Lord and wish to present your child for the Sacrament of Baptism, please contact the pastor.
The church nurtures those baptized as children and calls them to make public their personal profession of faith and their acceptance of responsibility in the life of the church. When these persons are ready, they are examined and received as active members. They will then be presented to the congregation during a service of public worship. In that service the church shall confirm them in their baptismal identity. They shall reaffirm the vows taken at Baptism by professing their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, renouncing evil and affirming their reliance on God’s grace, declaring their intention to participate actively and responsibly in the worship and mission of the church. They are commissioned for full participation in the mission and governance of the church and are welcomed by the congregation.
Marriage is a gift from God to all humankind and a covenant that serves the well-being of the entire human family. For Christians, marriage is a choice of free will to commit to live in a self-sacrificial love relationship before God. Like other milestones in our tradition, this covenant is solemnly celebrated, publicly witnessed, and acknowledged by the community of faith. Weddings at Gilwood Presbyterian Church are not limited to members; we truly welcome the opportunity to help facilitate and celebrate this joyous gift of God in the lives of His children. For more information about weddings in our congregation, please consult our Wedding Policy or contact our church office.
As Christians, we believe that our eternal life with God begins at Baptism. All we are, body, mind, and spirit; lives in the presence of God. While we walk with God in this His beautiful garden of Eden, we have the opportunity to love and serve Him through loving and serving one another. When our work here is done, we are welcomed home into God’s eternal kingdom. All life is a celebration, and our transition to Heaven is no exception. We grieve the temporary loss of those we love, but are comforted in the knowledge that we are safely in the hands of God who never leaves us nor forsakes us, and works all things for our good and His glory. Funerals at Gilwood Presbyterian Church are not limited to members; we truly welcome the opportunity to celebrate the life of your loved one and help facilitate this difficult yet important time in the life of your family. For more information about funerals in our congregation and our cemetery, please consult our Cemetery Policy and contact our church office.