Peter walked into the Primary room and sat down with his class. But he wasn’t thinking about Primary. Peter had just turned eight, and he was thinking about how excited he was for next Saturday, when he was going to be baptized.
Sister Spencer stood up to conduct sharing time. “We’re fortunate to have Brother Lancaster of the bishopric with us today,” she said.
Peter liked Brother Lancaster. He always had a smile for the children in the ward.
“Sister Spencer asked me to tell you about my baptism,” Brother Lancaster said. “I was baptized on a very cold day in March. It was so cold that some of the pipes in the stake center had frozen and burst. The whole basement of the stake center was flooded with six inches of icy water. Unfortunately, that is where the baptismal font was.”
Peter’s friend Jeremy raised his hand. “How did they get the water out so you could be baptized?” he asked.
“Well, it took a lot of men to drain the water,” Brother Lancaster said. “And they couldn’t do it before the baptism.”
“So was your baptism canceled?” Jeremy asked.
“No,” Brother Lancaster answered. “I waded through the water to get to the baptismal font. The water in the font was so cold that I was sure I was turning blue. My father was shivering as he said the words of the baptism prayer. As cold as I was, though, I wouldn’t trade a minute of that experience. Do you know why?”
The children shook their heads.
Peter leaned forward in his seat. He was eager to hear why Brother Lancaster didn’t mind the freezing cold water.
“Because it made me think of the pioneers. They sometimes had to be baptized in frozen rivers and streams where the men had to break apart the ice. It also reminded me of the sacrifices many people make to become members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
Brother Lancaster wiped some tears from his eyes. “My baptism was 43 years ago, but I still remember every detail. It was one of the most important days of my life.”
Peter wondered what his baptism would be like. Would he still be able to remember it when he was as old as Brother Lancaster?
When Saturday came, Peter looked at the baptismal font, filled with clean, warm water. He wouldn’t have to wade through icy water like Brother Lancaster or be baptized in a frozen stream like the pioneers.
Peter looked at all the special people who had come to watch him be baptized. The bishop and Brother Lancaster were there, along with his family’s home teachers, his Primary teacher, and the Primary presidency.
Peter held on tight to Dad’s hand as he stepped into the baptismal font. He felt the warm water on his feet and legs. Then Peter’s father baptized him a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. When he came up out of the water, Peter felt his heart could almost burst with happiness.
After he had changed into dry clothes, Peter walked back to the room where his family and friends were waiting. When Brother Lancaster reached out to shake his hand, Peter smiled and said, “I’ll remember this day for the rest of my life.”
“When I was eight years of age … [my mother] took me on a streetcar to the Tabernacle baptistry. … I dressed in white and was baptized. I remember that day as though it were yesterday and the happiness I felt at having had this ordinance performed.” 1
President Thomas S. Monson
“Tabernacle Memories,” Ensign, May 2007, 41.
Illustrations by Matt Smith
Keeping a journal is another great way to remember your baptism.