Saturday, 18 April 2015

Baptism according to the use of the Philippine Islands

Original in Spanish

Just seven hours ago, the solemn baptism of Junífera Clarita Perey Alas ended, according to the rite contained in the liturgical books of these Islands mandated and in force in 1962. She is the youngest daughter of the Alas couple, whose matrimony was likewise celebrated according to said books, in the rite appropriately called Mozarabic, and whose photos are found here.

With all necessary articles prepared for use in the rite, the solemn act starts with the commanded prayer said kneeling before the high altar.

Gathered at the threshold of the church, with the godmother carrying the baptisand (for being a girl, according to the Manuale which mentions the synod of Ferrara as the source of this custom), the priest addresses everyone the admonition before the sacrament, instructing them in the fruits of baptism and in the ceremonies that are performed in it.

The first scrutiny, the exsufflation, the insignation, the imposition of hand, and then the blessing and imposition of salt follow.

After the last minor exorcism (there are four exorcisms, including the great exorcism before the font), the priest admits the infant into the church, beneath the left end of his stole.

Then, entering into the church and walking towards the font, still sub stolam, while both godparents are supporting the infant, they transmit the faith to her in the recitation of the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer.

Before the font, the priest opens the ears and the nostrils of the baptisand, touching them with spittle, disposing them unto the Word of God, and unto divine odour and savour.

On behalf of the infant, the godparents profess the vows of baptism. The priest thereafter changes the purple cope and stole with the white stole and cope. At the font, again on behalf of the infant, they make the profession of faith. And the very act of baptism is now come! What a gladsome and moving spectacle! The priest baptises the infant, thrice pouring baptismal water upon the crown of her head.

The priest then anoints her with chrism, tracing the cross upon the crown of her head, as a physical manifestation of the gifts of the Holy Ghost.

Having made the chrismation, the priest imposes the white garment as a sign of the purity and whiteness of innocence, and afterwards the lit taper, sign of the brightness and light of good works.

After the dismissal, the priest admonishes the godparents for the last time concerning their Christian obligation in the instruction of the baptised in the rudiments of the faith.

Finally, all the bells of the church peal as a sign of the joy that at that precise moment fills all.

Junífera Clarita Perey Alas, thou art now regenerated unto new life! May God protect thee from harm amid the vicissitudes of life!

Ut in omnibus laudetur Dominus.

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