Friday, December 8, 2017


by Christopher R. Greenwood
and Spiritual Atrophy

“One Lord, one faith, one baptism,” (Ephesians 4: 5)

     When my oldest daughter, Casey, was getting ready to be baptized in the fall of 2003, my family and I had the opportunity to attend a picnic luncheon for LDS Humanitarian Center employees as an expression of gratitude from the Sr. management for all of our hard work we had done for the year.  I remember that it had been a pretty rough year for natural disasters around the world, which had kept us pretty busy sending out Hygiene kits, Neonatal resuscitation kits for newborns, School kits and other humanitarian aid.  There was an enormous earthquake in Algeria that required much assistance, as well as a devastating heat wave in France that had attributed to thousands of deaths and crippled the country at the time. 
     Upon arriving at the picnic spot, I introduced my family to the manager of the Humanitarian Center, Bill Reynolds. When introducing my daughter Casey to him and his wife, Bonita, I quickly volunteered that Casey was soon to be baptized.  I remember while Bill was shaking her hand, he looked her in the eye and asked “Are you sure you want to be baptized?”  I remember some momentary anxiety over the question and worried how Casey would respond, but her innocent response not only surprised me, but made me quite proud.  Without any hesitation, she looked right back at Bill and said “Of course…..don’t’ you think it’s the right thing to do?”  I remember Bill standing straight up, smiling, and looking over at Tami and I and saying “you raised her right…!”
     Although the desire to be baptized is one thing, it is another to fully understand the commitment involved and the covenant we make at baptism. When it comes to gospel principles, I have always used the “crawl, walk, run” methodology of teaching that I learned from my own parents, who learned it from their parents. For example, taking your children to see their friends and neighbors get baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a wonderful teaching opportunity. It generates gospel oriented questions from them and offers a perfect time for parents to conduct personal interviews with their children to address those questions. It also is a good opportunity to teach them by the Spirit in their own language and understanding.