Baptism

In the liturgy of the Baptism of Children the child is presented by the parents, who publicly declare their intention "to bring up the child in the fear and admonition of the Lord." Sponsors, by their presence, join in undertaking this duty. The minister baptizes the child by pouring or sprinkling water on its head and pronounces the admonition: "therefore live, yet not you, but Christ live in you; and the life which you now live in the flesh, live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved you, and gave Him- self for you." This is followed by the Old Testament benediction. Infant Baptism makes a child a non-communicant member of the congregation. It must be followed by public profession of faith and confirmation in later years to admit him to full communicant mem- bership. In Adult Baptism a person who has not been baptized in infancy makes public profession of faith in Christ and of his desire to "live under Christ in His kingdom, and serve Him in holiness and righteous- ness" throughout life.

Sunday School

In 1780, Robert Raikes established a Sunday school at Gloucester, England. Into his school he gathered poor, uneducated boys and taught them to read, especially to read the Bible. This type of Sunday school lasted at various places until primary education became general in the establishing of public schools. Moravian children did not need this kind of a school. In their dayschools they were taught to read and in regular periods of religious instruction they were well grounded in the doctrines of the Christian faith. In the first quarter of the nineteenth century Moravian members became interested in opening the Raikes type of Sunday school for underprivileged children. Bethlehem commenced such a school in the spring of 1816; Salem followed with a school at Hopewell in Septem- ber of the same year. It was the middle of the century before Sunday schools along more modern lines were commenced for children of Moravian congregations. Today the Moravian Church considers the Sunday school an im- portant feature of its congregational life. The more intricate pattern of living has curtailed opportunities for religious instruction of chil- dren and has thrown much of it upon the Sunday school.

Services

Come Worship With Us!
Sundays

9:30 Sunday School

10:45 Worship

Weddings

The Moravian Church considers marriage "to be honorable among all men," and "not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but rev- erently, discreetly, and in the fear of God." As early as 1764 a special Marriage Liturgy was prepared for use at Moravian weddings. In response to the solemn questions of the marriage ceremony (Hymnal, pp. 116, 117) the man and woman pledge themselves "to live together, in the holy bond of marriage," and to be "faithful Christian husband and wife so long as both shall live." A Moravian member is not forbidden to marry a member of another church, but young people are urged to choose Christian part- ners for their journey through life and to abide faithfully by their marriage vows. If the bride is a Moravian, her own pastor should per- form the ceremony.

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402 Third Avenue

Bethlehem, PA 18018

Telephone: 610-865-0256

Church Office Email: westsidemoravian@gmail.com

Pastor Christine Johnson: moravianpastorchris@gmail.com

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© 2015 by West Side Moravian Church

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