Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Day Everything Changed

Good Wednesday to you all.

Most of you who follow this blog know that I am into Baptism, big time. As a matter of fact, about ten or so years ago, I lead a pilgrimage of about 35 people (other Baptism "geeks") to spend two weeks searching for ancient baptism sites and fonts throughout Italy. It was a wonderful trip.

You also know that I have made my own personal pilgrimage to the place where I was baptized: St. Anthony of Padua in New Bedford, Massachusetts. A few weeks ago, I asked the pastor if he could send me some recent photos of the font. He had it moved from the sacristy (where it was rarely used for years (although I was baptized in that sacristy)—the parish used a glass bowl in the sanctuary for baptisms for years) to a prominent place in front of the altar of Saint Anne. If you don't mind, I'd like to share some of these photos with you.

First off is a photo of the interior of the church. Notice the little gizmos attached to the pew backs. I remember well my dad and grandfather using these things to clip their hats to the pew.

Here's a photo of the altar of St. Anne—kind of dark, but you can see the font.

And here's a closer look:

A view from the side:

Here's another:

And a few more:

Right there, on May 25, 1958, my life changed forever. Nothing would ever be the same again. Child of Henri and Yvette became an adopted child of God; Gerald Henri Galipeau put on Christ; Alleluia, Alleluia!

Send up a prayer of thanksgiving today for the greatest gift you were ever given. Thanks, Ma and Dad!

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.


jdonliturgy said...

Thanks for your sharing on the subject and importance of baptism, Jerry. Three of us from my parish listened to your webinar - and after processing it with the Liturgy Planning Committee, we have decided to focus our Lenten Journey on reclaiming our baptism as we accompany our catechumen to the font... One of the tags will indeed by "The Day Everything Changed".

Frajm said...

wow! great post and great inspiration. The baptismal font of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Macon is similarly placed but at Our Lady's Chapel which is very near our side door (entrance into the Church), same style, but not same material as this one--churches a bit a like but also very different. There was/is a baptistry off of the main entrance, with a stain glass over the door depicting the baptism of our Lord by St. John the Baptist--but now it has a new staircase to the choir loft and a "room of Reconciliation" which at least continues the room's tradition of cleansing from sin! Not a Jesuit church now, but designed and built by the Southern Jesuits, consecrated in 1903.
Fr. Allan J. McDonald
The website has a very good link to a very good virtual tour and as you look to the back left of the church, you see the door to the original baptistry. Also, we have the very same pew clips for hats! What a hoot!