It was sunny in Dallas on June 17th and 2PM in the afternoon. It was an interesting sunny for Dallas, Texas. We’d had lots of rain and the sky was actually quite dark that morning. But, when it was time for you to be baptized into the community of faith I’ve chosen for you at this point in your life, the sky was full of sunshine.
Your entire God Squad was there for you that day. Lindy and Pop Pop were there, wearing a corsage and boutonniere, respectively. Your Auntie and The Dude were there. The Ayres Little Men were Mother Amy’s helpers. You were surrounded in love.
You were baptized in All Saints chapel at the school your family always supported, even when it was not easy to do so. A mere hop, skip, and jump from the chapel is the Ayres Physics Lab. ESD sometimes forgets how deeply our family has loved it and I do not know why. Regardless of this sporadic amnesia, I am pleased you were baptized there.
In the ESD memorial pew were five roses – representing your great grandparents and a classmate of Mommy’s.
In the baptismal font was a special blend of holy water – some from Dallas, some from Mommy’s church in Luzern, and some from the holy River Jordan from Momma Sproaty’s trip to the Holy Land. You were blessed by water and God’s armor will protect every hair on your head.
There were two baptismal candles, including one from Lindy’s baptism. She has kept it for years, not even using it during the baptisms of her own children. It shone brightly, decades later, on your baptism, as if it was holding in so much of its glory in anticipation of that day.
Your godfathers were there. Your grandfather and uncle were there. Uncle Robert was there. Bop, Joe, Joe-L, Davey, your cousins, Rob, Bob, Hollye, Mike, Taffy, Rob, Father Casey, Larry, and a few others were there. Your father was not there. He did not call or write to Mommy because he will not speak to me. He does not accept my emails or my phone messages. I sent him a Tweet, which broke my heart. He did not respond. There were good men at your baptism, my son.
Godpoppa and Mommy sang the hymn from Switzerland we sang at the Hospice two years ago. Mommy sang in German, then in French, and then we sang in English. Just as we did. Mommy held her Luzern rosary. Switzerland was well represented in water, song, and body. That made Mommy so happy.
Godmomma, Sproaty, and Godmum dressed you, as is the tradition. They robed you in the christening gown purchased in Firenze (Florence, Italy) in 2007 by Lindy. This gown will, we hope, be worn by Ayres children in the future.
You slept. You were so peaceful, you slept. Even when Mother Amy dropped the holy water on your brow, you barely stirred. You were the incarnation of the peace of Christ, my Bärli.
We all promised to support you during your faith journey. No one will do so more than Mommy. Whatever path you choose for yourself, after we have walked the first leg of your path together in the Episcopal Church, I will support you. I only pray you choose a path paved with the virtues of peace, tolerance, and love.
What a blessing you are.
Here is the God Squad: