Friday, May 23, 2014

How Secure is the Baptismal Area?

It's beginning to be that time of year again. The weather is warmer so many start thinking of swimming pools as a way to beat the heat. With swim season upon us, along comes the advice: keep your children safe in and near the water. Accidental drownings occur and put us all on edge and we are hyper vigilant. But, have we given thought to how safe our baptismal areas are in our church buildings?

As parents we know that it only takes a second or two for a child to slip away. Inside our houses of worship we are still aware of that fact, yet we feel safer because in most cases we know the families who meet there. We feel safe and we watch out for one another. In many cases, not much thought is given to the accessibility of the baptismal area. After all, we want to make it as easy as possible to help someone to obey the gospel. Unfortunately, even in a church setting though, children can get away. I lost my oldest son to drowning, twenty one years ago this July. 

At the time there were no doors leading to the baptismal pool, and other than bubble wrap to keep out bugs, no covering over the pool itself. We were told afterward that it had been that way for over 50 years. No one had given thought to what might happen. After my son's death,  locked gates were put up and only certain men had access to the key.  The congregation where my husband and I met and later married, also realized that the doors leading to their area needed to be locked. I know during that time several people contacted my husband and me, saying because of our son's death they made the baptismal pool more secure.

I just read on a Facebook group the request for prayer by a young mom who lost her child in a similar manner nine years ago. Please, ladies. Let us work to stop this from happening again. On the next Lord's day, please check to see how accessible the baptismal pool is. Let the elders or the men of the congregation know that it needs to be safer if it isn't already locked. 

photo credit: jcsullivan24 via photopin cc