United Methodists do not re-baptize those who have already received Christian baptism. We believe baptism is ultimately an act of God, and God does it right the first time.
God has done all that is needed in baptism, whenever it happened in the life of the person who was baptized. Baptism is the initiation, the beginning, of Christian life. In baptism, we believe God has been faithful to start a person on the path to the fullness of life in Jesus Christ. The United Methodist Church recognizes as Christian baptism any baptism offered by an authorized person, in water, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
While God always remains faithful to the divine side, our side of the covenant relationship with God will need re-commitment and reaffirmation throughout our lives. Churches occasionally hold services that include a time to remember your baptism and reaffirm your baptismal vows. We encourage those who wish to commemorate and celebrate profound faith experiences in this ritual of reaffirmation which "uses water in ways that remind us of our baptism.”
In baptism, we receive the gift of the cleansing and re-birthing power of the Holy Spirit. In reaffirmation, we say for ourselves we wish to deepen our commitment to Christ.
This content was produced by Ask The UMC, a ministry of United Methodist Communications.