Enrolment of Candidates for Baptism

The enrolment of candidates for baptism at the Great Vigil of Easter normally takes place on the First Sunday in Lent.

This rite may be adapted to the particular circumstances.

After the sermon (or after the Affirmation of Faith) the presider  uses these or other appropriate words.

E te whanau a te Karaiti / Dear friends in Christ.
God is love, God gives us life.
We love because God first loves us.
In baptism God declares that love;
in Christ God calls us to respond.
Therefore let us welcome N,N who come to be received as candidates for Holy Baptism.

The catechumens to be enrolled come forward with their companions. A Catechist, or other lay representative of the congregation, presents them with the following or other suitable words.

I present these catechumens (N,N) who have been strengthened by God's Spirit and encouraged by the example and prayers of this congregation, and I ask that they be accepted as candidates for baptism. They have shared in worshipping God regularly with us and explored the faith and mission of God's people.

The presider asks the companions

Are they seeking by prayer, study, and example to follow the good news of Jesus Christ?

The companions reply

They are.

The presider addresses the catechumens who may respond individually as their name is called.

Presider                    Do you desire to be baptised?

Catechumen           Yes, I do.

The presider says to the people

E te whanau/ People of God,

are you willing that thesepersons (N,N) be candidates for baptism?

People                       We are. In the name of God we welcome you as candidates for baptism.

The candidates publicly write their names in the book in which the candidates for baptism are recorded. This may be the baptism register which will be completed at the baptism. Each name may be said aloud at the time of writing. The companions may also sign the book. The companions normally will be the sponsors at the baptism.

The candidates remain together at the front of the church while the deacon, or other person appointed, leads the following or other appropriate Prayers of the People.

Gracious God, we pray for these candidates for baptism (N,N), that  they may remember with thanksgiving this day when they were chosen.

God of love
grant our prayer.

Fountain of wisdom, we pray for their companion(s) and all those who will journey with these candidates, that together they may share the riches of the Word of God and follow the good news of Jesus Christ.

God of love
grant our prayer.

God our companion, we pray for the families and friends of these candidates that they may help them to follow the leading of the Spirit.

God of love
grant our prayer.

God of renewal, we pray for this congregation, that during this Lenten season we may all grow in love and persevere in prayer.

God of love
grant our prayer.

Covenant God, we pray for N our bishop, and for all Christian people.

God of love
grant our prayer.

God our creator, we pray for the leaders of the nations, and for all in authority.

God of love
grant our prayer.

Compassionate God, we pray for the sick and the suffering, and for those in need.

God of love
grant our prayer.

Faithful God, we pray for all who have died in the hope of the resurrection, and for those whose faith is known to you alone.

God of love
grant our prayer.

In union with (N and) all the saints, we commit ourselves, one another, and our whole life to Christ our God. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.

The presider says

Let us pray for these candidates (N,N) in silence.

The companions place a hand upon the shoulder of the one they are companioning.   The congregation prays in silence for the candidates and the presider may lay hands on the head of each candidate in turn. Then with hands extended over the candidates the presider says these or other appropriate words.

Blessed are you, caring God,
the fountain of all life and goodness.
You come to us before we turn to you
and run to meet us when we seek you.
Pour your abundant grace on your servants (N,N)
who thirst for new birth
by water and the Spirit
and help us all to know our need for you.
Praise be to you, O Holy One,
who was, and is, and shall be for ever and ever.


The candidates may be welcomed informally with gifts and applause as appropriate. Someone may speak on behalf of the congregation.

The candidates and companions then return to their places.

The Eucharist continues with the Ministry of the Sacrament.

It may be appropriate for some catechumens to give personal witness to their faith immediately following the question and answer, "Do you desire to be baptised? Yes, I do."
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