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Order of Centurions

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you

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Baptism and Communion are the sacraments commanded by Christ. In St. Matthew 28:19-20, he said: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. Salvation security is assured when we confess Jesus as Lord and Savior with our mouth, and believe God raised him from the dead in our hearts [Rom 10:9], and abide in him [John 15:6]. In obedience to Jesus' command [Matthew 28:19], the Church has always baptized believers with water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit into the Church. Baptism is a sacrament for regeneration, removal of sin, and with Confirmation the infilling of the Holy Spirit. In Baptism, believers are sanctified (set apart) as Holy for the Church and marked as Christ's own. Baptism is a sign of full membership and communion in the Church community. Baptism is normally performed by an ordained minister, but may be performed by any Christian if need be. A form of Baptism in the Early Church may be used. There is only one baptism in the Church Militant. Baptism is obligatory in obedience to Jesus' command: Remember the words of our Lord who said, "And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God; but whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God" and "Except a man be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God".

Baptism was performed in the earliest days of the Church. Indeed, St. John the Baptist baptized with water, and at his hand our Lord was baptized with water and God baptized him with the Holy Spirit. This Order honors the first Gentile to be baptized into the New Church, Cornelius the Centurion of Caesarea.

All Christian Churches conduct baptisms. Therefore anyone baptized according to the formula in Matthew 28 is considered a Christian and a member of the Holy Universal Christian Church - the Church Militant.

Although baptism is acceptable in any season, a Cohort wishing to follow the ancient tradition that the Centurions saw, would choose the Easter Vigil as the time for the baptism.

(The manner of baptism is not specified in Scripture except that it be done in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit with water, and by the example of our Lord who was batized in the Jordon River. Early tradition in the Church preferred cold running water and immersion, but allowed for other methods) The Apostles Tradition, published about 215AD, records the historic rite used in Rome. Cohorts wishing to adopt this ancient form should adopt it so that it is appropriate for their culture. Cohorts may adapt this baptismal liturgy to suit local situations, but should always have three times that the water is applied in the baptism: for the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with water and a form of examination and renunciation of evil.

Homily of Ambrose on the nature of the Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist | Cyril of Jerusalem on Chrism at Baptism


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