CHRISTIANITY

Commitment, Membership & Leadership

Commitment, Membership & Leadership


Commitment and Membership in Christianity

ChristianityMost Christians are simply born into the religion, although Christianity does have an evangelical tradition which means some people work to convert others to the religion as did Jesus and the disciples.

The first ceremony for Christians is baptism, which usually happens when the initiate is an infant. Most Christians are baptised in church by a minister or a priest who sprinkles holy water on the baby and blesses it. Baptism is also a naming ceremony when people are given a Christian name.

Baptism can happen later in life, especially for converts or born-again Christians, and sometimes involves complete immersion in a lake or river. Jesus was baptised as an adult by John the Baptist in the River Jordan.

Most Christian denominations reinforce baptism by a Confirmation ceremony in late childhood or early teens, when the initiate is old enough to understand the implications of being a member of the Christian Church.

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Religious leaders

Christianity and CatholicismDifferent denominations have different names for their preachers and religious leaders. In the Church of Scotland, preachers are ministers, in the Church of England they are vicars and in the Roman Catholic Church they are priests. Some churches also have a hierarchy which includes bishops and archbishops. In England, the head of the established Church, the Church of England, is the Queen.

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