What Made Ruth so Special?

March 20, 2010

One hundred and one years ago today, baby Ruth Esther Eliza Bertha Hooge had a very special day.

On this day, she was baptized and became a child of God.

Of all the things Ruth’s parents did for her, her baptism was certainly the greatest. This small splash of water on her head and the few spoken words were testament of God’s promise: he washed away her sin and chose her as his own. Because of this, throughout her 97 years of life, Ruth had the confidence of knowing she was beloved and special.

Isn’t that awesome?!

What’s also awesome is that generations later baptism is still a tradition in our family. We still gather together and baptize our newborn babies. We still teach them they are saved children of God. It’s tradition. It’s our heavenly heritage.

Recently, my niece, Ruth Baur, talked about this with the first and second grade children she teaches at Beautiful Savior Lutheran School in Grove City, OH. Not only does Ruth share my grandmother’s name, but she also has her baptismal certificate, which now is a very old and cherished document.

“I brought it to school to show my kids a couple weeks ago for show-and-tell day during our Christian Education week,” Ruth emailed. “I told them how her (Ruth Hooge’s) parents had her baptised and taught her God’s Word. When she grew up she did the same for my grandma, who did the same for my mom, who did the same for me. We’d been talking about the concept of passing our faith down to the next generation in connection with our Old Testament Bible stories. My students thought it was cool.”

Yep, that is cool. That makes us special too, just like Ruth.

My grandmother, Ruth, knit and crocheted blankets for each of my four children’s baptisms.

She knit the tiniest, little sweaters for my twin sons when they were born two months premature.

When my mother (Ruth’s daughter, Carol) gave me her cedar hope chest, these two baptismal gowns were inside. One was mine, and I think my mother may have sewn it—she was an excellent seamstress. I’m unsure of the history of the tea-colored gown.

Aren’t these just the cutest things! The photo doesn’t convey how tiny they are.

So, tell me. What special things have you done for baptisms in your family? Got pictures? I’d love to post them!


2 Responses to “What Made Ruth so Special?”

  1. Ann Says:

    Baptism is an important tradition in my family (my family is Catholic), but most of my husband’s family belongs to Christian churches that don’t practice baptism. Their notion is that people should make the choice to commit themselves to the church, and not have parents make the choice for them.

    However, whenever a baby is born in one of these families, they have a dedication ceremony for the baby in their church within the first three or four months.

    It seems people have an innate need to welcome babies into God’s community on earth. A new person is certainly a reason for celebration!

    Thanks for the post on this topic, and the cool photos.

  2. Terri Says:

    My family also believes in the importance of baptism. So important, that 3 of my 4 babies were discharged from the hospital just in time to make the Sunday morning church service and their baptism.

    All four of my children were baptized by their Grandpa (Pastor) Baur. They also wore a baptismal gown knitted by Great Grandma Larson. Grandma Larson also knitted/crocheted a baptismal blanket for each of my babies.

    One other item that accidentally turned out to be a baptism ‘tradition’. At our wedding, the congregation sang Hymn 321, Savior Again to Thy Dear Name we Raise. Just by chance, Grandpa (Pastor) Baur chose that as the closing hymn each Sunday one of my babies were baptized.

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