Baptism of the Lord

01-13-2019Weekly Reflection

Think of what it's like to wait a long time. Can you imagine what it would be like to wait for centuries? No one person lives that long, of course. But for the Israelites, they had heard the stories from generation to generation. They had been conquered time and time again, and now "the people were filled with expectation, and all were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Christ."

They had been waiting for a Messiah, one who did miraculous deeds and said profound things; someone aglow with the glory of God. We all know what it's like to hope and be disappointed. But what if your hopes were fulfilled? That day at the Jordan River, an audience had gathered. Among the crowd for baptism was an unknown man. Perhaps he was dirty from weeks in the desert. His hands had the calloused palms of a tradesman, a carpenter. He and John the Baptist may have embraced with the familiarity of the cousins they were. This man wades into the Jordan for a good, solid dunking. As he rises from the water, the One who breathed life into Adam gasps for air like any other man.  

But then "heaven was opened." The clouds in the sky part miles above. "And the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove." An apparition with substance sails through the sky. It exudes gentleness and power all at once. "And a voice came from heaven, 'You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.'" Can you imagine the sight? For the crowd, there is no doubting what they have seen, who they have seen. Can you imagine this encounter with our God who keeps His promises? What are you waiting for?

El Bautismo del Señor

La liturgia de la Iglesia concluye la Navidad con esta Fiesta del Bautismo del Señor. En su bautismo Jesús, pone el punto de partida para su misión ministerial. El Padre del cielo lo acompaña de manera especial. Se narra que se abrieron los cielos y que el Espíritu Santo bajó sobre él y se manifestó en forma de paloma...del cielo vino una voz: "Tú eres mi Hijo, hoy te he dado la vida" (Lucas 3, 21 -22). En aquel tiempo, las personas que escuchaban la predicación de Juan y de Jesús tenían que elegir seguir a Jesús o seguir a Juan. Momentos de tensión surgieron. Ahora, la Iglesia nos invita a ver que el bautismo es un segundo nacimiento donde se abre la puerta para entrar a formar parte de la de familia de Dios.

¿Has tenido la oportunidad de reflexionar lo que significa el bautismo? ¿Cuánta importancia le das al ser hijo o hija de Dios? El Papa Francisco nos dice lo siguiente acerca del Bautismo: "En el Bautismo somos consagrados por el Espíritu Santo. La palabra "cristiano" significa esto, significa consagrado como Jesús, en el Espíritu con el cual ha sido consagrado Jesús en toda su existencia terrena. Él es el "Cristo", ungido, consagrado, los bautizados somos "cristianos", es decir, consagrados, ungidos. Entonces, queridos padres, queridos padrinos y madrinas, si quieren que sus hijos se hagan verdaderos cristianos, ayúdenlos a crecer "consagrados" en el Espíritu Santo, es decir, en el calor del amor de Dios, en la luz de su Palabra. Por esto, no se olviden de invocar siempre al Espíritu Santo, todos los días". (Fiesta del Bautismo del Señor, Capilla Sixtina, domingo 11 de enero de 2015). ¿Qué te impresiona del mensaje del Papa?