Baptism invitations are usually sent out for infant baptisms. Infant baptism is a Christian religious procedure for newborns or even young children. Invitations are rarely sent out for the contrasting practice, believer’s baptism, because the event will usually take place in a family church with the presence and knowledge of existing churchgoers and friends. Oftentimes, for very young children, the invitations go out to relatives. Infant baptisms are common in most Orthodox churches, the Reformed Church in America, the Church of the Nazarene, the United Church of Christ, and by Presbyterians, Lutherans, Methodists, and the Roman Catholic Church. Ironically, Baptists do not usually practice infant baptism. Pentecostals, Mennonites, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Latter-day Saints don’t practice it either. You can be assured, if you’re the recipient of an invitation, that the sender is not affiliated with any of the aforementioned offshoots of Christianity.
What is baptism and why are invitations issued for the ceremonial procedure?
Baptism is a Christian practice that dates back to the time of Jesus. Only belief is necessary for salvation, according to the church fathers, notably Paul the Apostle. However, many new Christians become baptized to officially let others know of their conversion, by faith and belief. Many different sects profess that baptism means something different – either that it’s necessary for salvation or for a renunciation of sins in a formal setting or some other reason. The baptism involves a preacher or pastor walking a person out into the river or lake and reciting either of the following: “I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit”, or, “I baptize you in the name of Jesus”. Either is sufficient, but some groups have theological quarrels over which is necessary, or at the least, accurate. Baptism is a hot topic of discussion in theological and lay church circles. Not many people are fully aware that belief, alone, is sufficient, and the gospel has been under siege in this, and other, ways since the beginning of the simple message of salvation by faith alone. The parents of the child send out invitations … usually when it’s an infant baptism, because all the relatives and friends can witness the child’s formal inception into the Christian church, according to that sect’s guidelines of salvation. Most people forget that salvation is a gift and believe that a ceremony like this is necessary.
Baptism invitations come in many designs that are appealing, lovely, and angelic in color choice, illustration or photo, and adornments – like ribbons, embossed paper, or gold flecks. Each is symbolic – of the gift-like nature of salvation, of the rising to a better life after death, and the eternal nature of the new life. Generic babies in photographs are usually featured on the card with information about the time, place, date, and other information – like an after-event/ceremony party.
Baptism invitations are loosely related to christening invitations and baby shower invitations, and sometimes they’re sold in discounted packs.