At the Mass I attended yesterday morning at St. Thomas More church in St. Paul, a baby was baptized. As we watched the celebrant bless the water with which the baby would be baptized, I was reminded of an experience I had one day during my retreat.
Earlier in that day, I had been praying with Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist (itself a powerful prayer experience). That afternoon, as I was standing on the sand at the ocean’s edge and, reviewing the scene, I said to Jesus, “Baptize me, Lord.” And I saw Jesus held out his arm over the ocean and said, “I baptize you with the water of my father’s creation.” And I stood with my eyes closed as the waves rolled in, feeling the spray of the water (and a lot more than spray up to my knees).
In that moment, I had a deep realization that all is blessed. That all is already holy. That all of God’s creation is already sanctified by the divine touch, divine breath.
There is no need to bless the water with which we are baptized. The act of blessing the water that we call “holy water” doesn’t itself bless the water. The words of blessing are merely an outward sign of the blessing that already exists.
All is blessed by God.