I attended my good friend, Felda’s son’s Rite of Baptism with my oldest
daughter and her son, Micah. We were in awe of the beauty in St. Mary’s
Catholic Church and I took some photos of the Virgin Mary, lovely stained
glass windows and most importantly, the seven little angels who were
doused with big dollops of water and the Holy Spirit.
I feel sharing the seven little cherubs’ first names will help you to picture
them better, include them for a moment in your thoughts and it will help
me later on, to remember their names in my prayers.
There was an abundance of baby boys as you can note from their names!
Zachary was blessed to have his grandmother come from New Jersey, she
is disabled and has difficulty getting places. It was so kind of her son,
Zach’s father, Jason’s brother to drive her for this special event. Felda called
it a “christening” on her invitation given to me, to share with my oldest
daughter and family. The single sheet or program, passed at the door gave
a different title, “The Rite of Baptism.”
There was a beautiful black and white (resembling pen and ink) drawing
of an angel with wide outstretched wings on the program. The priest
who performed the service was a lovely African American man named
Rev. B. Augustine Okpe. He went around to each famiy before the service
and greeted them, asked for the name of each baby so he could try to
remember their last names’ pronunciation.
The first part of the service, I felt you may be interested in knowing is called,
“Liturgy of the Word.” This part encompassed scriptures, a homily, general
intercessions and the litany of the saints. The last part of this portion included
an explanation of the “Oil of Catechumens.” This is a blessed oil by honored
and respected persons above the level of the priest, Archbishops come to
consecrate the oil.
“Celebration of the Sacrament” includes blessing of the baptismal font,
renunciation of sin and profession of faith. It also had the beautiful individual
baptisms of each baby. The first family who was presented the baby was not
the least phased by the water splashing, each one after were a little fussy but
no great wailing ensued! I wondered about the temperature of the water, I
also wondered of the ease of the babies accepting the splashes of water. It
was not like the Episcopalian baptism my oldest daughter was given, with
a sprinkle and a cross drawn on her forehead with the reverend’s thumb
gently placed. (She wondered about this, I told her after the service, she
was only three months old and her godparents were nontraditional, in
that we chose both my brothers. My youngest brother married about 12
years later, telling his wife she was a “guest godparent!”
The next part was titled “Explanatory Rites”
In this part, the anointing after Baptism, using the oil and called, “Chrism”
was performed. The words,
“In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost” are said while the oil
is put on the baby’s forehead in the sign of the cross.
Instructions regarding baptismal garment were given, the godparents
were told to come forward to light a candle from the “Baptismal Candle”
and take it back to where the baby’s families were seated. The next part
I did not hear the explanation or missed it, maybe Micah “squirmed” or
caught my eye but this part sounds interesting, you may investigate on
your own, or if Catholic, explain in the comments section:
“Prayer over Ears and Mouth,” called the “Ephphatha ” was the last of the
The Conclusion of Rite included the Lord’s Prayer, Blessings and Dismissal.
In the dismissal, attending friends and family were told that there would be
a Reception of the Children, in the rear of the sanctuary. This was more of
a receiving line, than a reception (in my mind that would include food and
We proceeded to the Fire Station, located on S.Rtes. 36/37 where we helped
prepare the room for Felda, Jason, Kridia Dawn and Zachary’s arrival. Mary
Jane, her husband, James also helped. “M.J.” looked lovely in her purple dress
and James looked very handsome in his suit. They were named Zachary’s
I have permission to use Zachary’s names (but not his last name.)
Zachary James Nelson (and there is a last name, too!)
I am going to list the delicious filipino dishes, along with the ones we
and guest brought, too.
Filipino food included:
“adobo” or “humba” (pronounced hoombah) which can be either
chicken or pork, cooked in a spicy sauce that includes soy sauce.
There were rice noodles by themselves.
“lumpia” (egg or spring rolls) where the meat is prepared ahead with
different vegetables and drained well. Then the phyllo is laid out and
the “stuffing” put in. Felda fries them in a light canola oil until they
are turned light brown on all sides. These are delicious and not heavy
tasting, the lightness in flavor is very nice indeed!
“pensit” is a mixture of rice noodles, meat and vegetables. This tastes
very good with an Asian sauce that is like sweet and sour but spicier.
Felda says they go to an Asian store on Sawmill Road in Columbus,
Ohio to purchase this. The meat used in this “pensit” is an apple cured
pork belly, it has strips of fat within the meat. It is very tasty!
There are certain gelatin squares that look like jello but are chewy that
are put in their “traditional fruit cocktail,” along with coconut milk and
The “flan” tasted much like my Mom’s recipe for Mexican or Spanish flan.
The Philippines, Felda told me, take their foods and flavors both from the
Asians and the Spanish cultures. I told her I am able to listen to her, M.J.
and May and hear many Spanish words, like “trabajo” is work, etc.
I love the caramel sauce that you make of burning sugar with butter
and the thick, custard like texture to “flan.”
Another dessert is called, “casava” which is a chewy, sweet “cake” but
is also more of a moist cake or almost like custard, too.
Felda admonished or advised to “try just small bites,” to my oldest
daughter and Micah, too. Each thing may need to be tried, since she says
the textures and flavors of filipino food is quite unique compared to our
“plain” American taste buds.
My oldest daughter went back for seconds on several of the main dishes,
but only ate small portions of the desserts, because she was getting too
full! Micah liked the potato chips, the rice noodles, the “pensit” and the
meat by itself.
The American food they had were dishes brought by us and others. This
included an apple cake, sour cream cake, barbecued chicken, barbecued
beef brisket sandwiches and cole slaw. We had brought the chips, a raw
vegetable tray and cheese, sausage slices and crackers. These appetizers
were consumed while we waited for the guests to arrive. Several people
who were not at the church came to the filipino party and we all enjoyed
lively music. While we would have liked to stay more than 3 hours, Micah
was getting tired for his nap. We missed out on some games and karaoke
Felda and I added up the number of filipino parties I have attended since
I met her four and a half years ago, to the sum total of six celebrations!!
I had given her my grandsons’ babysitter’s name in Felda’s first week of
her working in the Bin Order Filler position and she has known Skyler
and Micah for all of that time, along with my oldest daughter, too. She met
my daughter in law and my son’s family downtown, we planned a meeting
and traveled around together for a fun First Friday about two years ago.
As always, this cool but sunny Sunday afternoon was filled with laughter,
loud and boisterous voices and delectable traditional filipino foods!
“A grand time was had by all!”
(Micah fell asleep as we were driving, in his car seat. Now that he goes to
preschool, age 4, he is back to being worn out in the afternoons. My
daughter says that it is a nice change from his giving up his naps at age 2!)
I would like to request that you keep the Philippines in your thoughts still
because there have been very high after-shocks and the levels following
the earthquakes are worse than the first ones. James, M.J.’s husband, led
us in a nice prayer before we ate and included the details of the disaster
that is still going on, as of Sunday, October 20, 2013.