He talks about baptismal preparation, and the practices of the ancient church. Take a look at this list and see how many of them we still use today:
To varying degrees, the role of the “sponsor” was important.
- A screening interview became common prior to admission into the catechumenate in order to assure sincerity.
- An emphasis on the “Two Ways” during pre-baptismal instruction.
- A preference for baptizing in natural or “living” water sources, with exceptions allowed.
- Immersion as the preferred mode, with allowances made for pouring.
- Baptism is in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- Baptisms are primarily held on Easter/Easter Eve.
- Lent is reserved for final catechesis and preparation for baptism.
- Repeated exorcisms, signing with the cross, and laying on of hands were common for catechumens.
- Catechumens were expected to purify their lives and engage in good deeds within the community.
- An affirmation of faith and renunciation of the devil occurred at the time of baptism.
- Partaking of the Eucharist is reserved for baptized believers only.
- Though sometimes quite brief, after-baptism mystagogy occurred
I don't mean to sound bitter, but I am chewing on this. And as we enter Advent and look forward to the return of Christ, I fear that many people who are part of our "frequent worshipers club" will be unhappy when they go to redeem their membership points card. And we will have done them a disservice.