19 November 2013

Avonlea's Baptism and Dedication

On Sunday, November 3, we baptized Avonlea Brooklyn Gamel at St. Paul's Episcopal Church.  (To see Bennett's baptism, click here.)

We have chosen to baptize all three of our children.  However, since our church home does not baptize infants (only adult baptism), we chose a church close to our hearts in which to have her baptized.

Father Chuck is a really wonderful guy.  We were honored to have him baptize our sweet baby girl.

Pictured here are the godparents (Mat and Kristin and their three boys), Father Chuck, Brian and myself with our boys and our dear friend Josh.  Josh is the our pastor of our church.  He stood with us as we presented Avonlea for baptism.  He was there at the hospital with us shortly after we found out Bennett was sick.  He was there when we gave Avonlea up for baptism. We are very thankful for his continued friendship and presence in our life.

We are extremely thankful for the gift of Avonlea to our lives.

"Just because I'm all dolled up, doesn't mean I don't still want my paci!"

Mat and Kristin are dear friends of ours.   Brian and Mat are in the same program at Baylor getting their PhDs in Religion.  Kristin and I originally met through our mutual best friend Chelsea from Durham, NC.  Kristin and Mat lost their first son, Isaiah, to childhood cancer at age 6.  We have seen them cope courageously with the loss of a child.  They have three other little boys but no little girls.  It was a gift for us to be able to ask them to be the godparents to Avonlea, our much wanted baby girl.

Avonlea's cake, which we shared with those who came out to celebrate this special day.

Although our extended families weren't able to be there, we were thankful to have Aunt Brooklyn there.  Brooklyn is Avonlea Brooklyn Gamel's namesake.  Our little boys really enjoyed Avonlea's baptism.  It helped them understand the idea of baptism so that now when we share with them about their baptism, they better understand.

After Avonlea's baptism, we headed to our church to have Avonlea dedicated.  We felt it was really important that we introduced Avonlea to our church community and made the commitment to our church body that we will raise Avonlea to love Christ and to know that she is loved by God. Kristin and Mat, who attend our church as well, prayed a prayer for Avonlea.  Our church presented Avonlea with a certificate and a Bible.

I loved seeing this photograph after we were done with the Baby Dedication.  Oliver reached up to grab Avonlea's hand while I was holding her and listening to another family in the church dedicate their son.  Avonlea has two protective and adoring big brothers!

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