Religion is simply defined as an obedience to, or worship of a supernatural power or powers that are considered to be divine, and that have power over human beings. Whilst I myself have a kind of a Wall Street approach to religion (some days I have it, most days I don't), I have always admired those whose steadfast belief are not given to my personal fluctuations.
And so it was with a certain pride I was asked to attend to Baby Norah while daughter Kenzie and SIL Drew were baptized on Easter in the waters of Tampa Bay. I was happy to see Mackenzie finally achieving as an adult what I had achieved as a baby. I guess it never hurts to cross the "T's" and dot the "I's", just in case.
This was the spot: a place called "Redneck Riviera" along the Gandy Boulevard Bridge that takes you into Tampa. It is an area that is the home to folks who want to dip their feet into the water, swim, fish but don't want to do the local beach scene. It's the Wal-Mart of St. Pete beaches.
The church they attend is called the City On A Hill church and their motto is "We Make It Hard to Go To Hell". We were all told to arrive at 6:00 AM. The pictures above are of a quiet, still and beautiful time of day I call the Shank. The top pic is looking back toward St. Pete, and the bottom one is heading toward Tampa.
The sun poked through the horizon and then quickly hid behind the clouds. It was a bit chilly and I was worried about the soon-to-be-dunked, but their fervor and passion would surely keep them warm.
Norah was still sleep in the car so we family, babysitters and curious spectators were able to inch closer to the action.
This short video captured their baptism and I couldn't help but be proud of Kenzie, as embracing whatever it is you want to embrace is usually a good, and appropriate thing. And if Marx was right, that religion is the opiate of the people, then a little self-medicating in this crazy world isn't necessarily a bad thing.
Drew is the guy looking to his left straight in the back row, and Kenzie is next to him. This is a group portrait of all those dunked now trying to warm themselves with towels, hoodies and each other.
Norah slept through it all so I missed out on her fuzzies, but got enough from all the newly baptized to last awhile.
Congratulations to Kenzie and to all the others, may your beliefs help guide you through all the calm times and storms of life.