A family poses in Trinity Church on All Saints Sunday 2021
Photo: Leo Sorel

All Saints' Sunday: A Day of Baptisms

When a parish must navigate a once-in-a-century pandemic, and goes 22 months without public baptisms, the return of the ceremony of welcoming new members to the Church is bound to be a big deal.

And the 9am Holy Eucharist on All Saints’ Sunday at Trinity Church Wall Street did not disappoint: there were 22 baptisms, including one adult and 21 children, representing 20 families (Elleanna and Xander Maasry are siblings).

Four Trinity clergy, the Rev. Phillip Jackson, the Rev. Michael Bird, the Rev. Elizabeth Blunt, and the Rev. Kristin Kaulbach Miles, shared in the ancient ritual. Father Phil, Trinity’s priest-in-charge, promised to preach a brief sermon because “we gotta get to the baptisms.”

Father Phil took a verse from the Gospel according to John, chapter 11, the story of the raising of Lazarus: “Unbind him and let him go,” noting that it’s a call to freedom. “That’s what baptism is. It’s a loosening of our binds, and now we can be free.”

Baptisms are always special occasions, visible examples of the multi-generational nature of a congregation. It’s a day when toddlers wander out of the pews, emergency diaper changes are frequently required, and the voices of children echo through the church, in what Trinity Vicar, the Rev. Michael Bird called, “joyous chaos.”

And on this particular All Saints’ Sunday, the ceremony of baptisms with more than a hundred people to witness it demonstrated something else, something encouraging: despite the grief and disruption of the past 20 months, Trinity’s parishioners have hung in with each other, and are now welcoming the newest members of the community of faith.

The Newly Baptized

Andreas Günther 

Aleksy Chun  

Julien Cordier Clarke  

Frances Jane Cuddy  

Jonathan Morton Dooner Walker  

Darius River Dorval  

Francis Fitzgerald Quinn  

Santino Alexander Fontana-Matolcsy  

Grayson Kenneth Horton  

Daphne Rose Layne  

Elleanna Kuniko Maasry  

Xander Kai Maasry  

Olivia Ellen Mensah-Stakhursky  

Logan Nunes Abdallah  

Mayosire Olapade-Olaopa  

Rheya Anita Ortiz  

Laya Elizabeth Ramesh  

Ford Arthur Ramsdell  

James Patrick Roer  

George Atlas Rose  

Elke Forbes Slothower  

Sage West