Sunday 08 January, the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Baptism of Our Lord by St. John the Baptist. This brings to an end the season of Christmas. The Church recalls Our Lord’s second manifestation or epiphany which occurred on the occasion of His baptism in the Jordan. Jesus descended into the River to sanctify its waters and to give them the power to beget sons of God.
Many of the incidents which accompanied Christ’s baptism are symbolical of what happened at our Baptism. At Christ’s baptism the Holy Spirit descended upon Him; at our Baptism the Trinity took its abode in our soul. At His baptism Christ was proclaimed the ‘Beloved Son’ of the Father; at our Baptism we become the adopted sons of God.
At Christ’s baptism the heavens were opened; at our Baptism heaven was opened to us. At His baptism Jesus prayed; after our Baptism we must pray to avoid actual sin.